27 lots in Kuala Lurah Industrial Site up for lease soon


THE government will soon open for lease 27 lots in the first phase of the Kuala Lurah Industrial Site, with the $24 million project just awaiting a formal handover before it opens for business.

Phase one of the project, covering an area of 33 acres, was completed in June last year and will cater mainly to the building materials industry, the Brunei Industrial Development Authority (BINA) revealed during a presentation at the 10th National Development Plan (RKN10) yesterday.

BINA noted that the location is one of the most advantageous for gaining access to the Sabah market.

"We have identified to cater this area for the building material industry because our statistics have shown that this is the second biggest sector within the manufacturing sector in Brunei," Dk Suridah Pg Haji Sulaiman, special duties officer of BINA, said.

She added that statistics have shown that the sector is flourishing. She also said that the new site would be logistically attractive for both local and foreign investors involved in building materials as well as supporting industries.

Dk Suridah explained that the site is currently awaiting formal handover from the Public Works Department, adding that there was a lot of interest being shown from the building materials sector for the land.

A 2010 report states that the project, covering a total land area of 130 hectares, was aimed at providing basic infrastructure, such as piping, sewerage, roads, electricity and water for businesses. However, the businesses would have to develop and build the structures needed.

Masni Hj Mohsin, special duties officer and head of Industrial Authority at BINA, said in the report that authorities realised leasing space at the site could potentially make it difficult for tenants with low capital, as it meant tenants would not be able to use the land as bank collateral.

But if they were given a lease of 50 or 90 years, then businesses should be able to use the leased property as collateral.

Both officials said the rent had not been finalised yet, but would average about $1,000 per acre per month for leases of around 15 to 30 years.

BINA also plans to use the location, with the road network between Brunei and Malaysia, to spur trans-border trade, officials said.

Phase two will begin once takers come to the industrial site.

"BINA would be getting its funding for the project from RKN (National Development Plan)," she said in the previous report.

Some other sectors of the primary resource industry that are of interest are downstream industries, as well as agriculture and food production and fisheries are being targeted for the industrial site.

Masni said the types of businesses that could locate at the Kuala Lurah site would depend on the businesses' needs. "Maybe, when we have a lot of producers in the fisheries area, they will need the space for quick-freezing, packaging and export as that is the purpose," she said. The Brunei Times

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