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By Karen Bong
KUCHING, Dec 4: The new Mukah Airport will be a catalyst for socio-economic growth and to support the transformation of Mukah district as an education hub, research centre and the development of Matadeng Industrial Park.
Federal Transport Minister Dato Seri Ir Dr Wee Ka Siong emphasised that the new airport will have a double impact on the socio-economic growth in the district, especially in facilitating movement of trade and export sectors of agriculture, fisheries, food and local products such as sago and umai.
“I am confident and believe that the operation of this airport will also support the development of Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (Score).
“It is not only the newest landmark in Mukah, but will also be a catalyst to drive progress and development, as well as provide a double impact on the socio-economic growth in the district,” he said.
Wee highlighted this when speaking at the launching of the new Mukah Airport by Prime Minister Dato Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob and Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg in Mukah today.
The new Mukah Airport, he continued, demonstrated the Sarawak government’s concern to ensure that the needs and interests of the local people are met, especially to enhance the transport system in rural areas of Sarawak.
“The improvement in the public transport system is not only to provide connectivity and accessibility to the population, but more than that, it can open up more business opportunities, stimulate tourism activities and increase employment opportunities through local socio-economic development that would contribute to nation-building,” he added.
According to him, the new Mukah airport, which is located about seven kilometers from the city centre that had replaced the STOLport (short take-off and landing air strip) and will cater to a capacity of 265,000 passengers a year.
In the past, he noted that only small-capacity Twin Otter (DHC-6) aircraft could land, but with the operation of this new airport, it can accommodate larger aircraft such as ATR aircraft that can carry more passengers at a time.
Apart from that, the new Mukah Airport also houses the Air Traffic Control Tower, the Office of the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM), the Metrology Department (MET) and the facilities of the Fire and Rescue Department (Bomba).
“It is the intention of the Federal government to do the best for all Malaysian Families, especially in Sarawak, no matter how far or near, as long as Malaysian Families get to enjoy the benefits and results of development implemented by the government,” he said.
Sarawak Transport Minister Dato Sri Lee Kim Shin, Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah, Sarawak DUN Speaker Datuk Amar Mohamad Asfia Awang Nassar and Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Sabah and Sarawak Affairs) Datuk Hanifah Hajar Taib were among those present. — DayakDaily