GEORGE TOWN, September 1 — The Environmental Management Plan (EMP) for the ‘Silicon Island’ project has received official approval from the Penang State Department of Environment (JAS) on July 21, 2023. This approval follows the clearance of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Report for the Penang South Island (PSI) project by the central JAS office with 71 conditions, as communicated via a letter dated April 11, 2023.

On behalf of the State Government, we express our utmost appreciation to the Penang State JAS for their meticulous evaluation and approval of the related EMP.  This decision is the result of collaborative efforts to ensure that the ‘Silicon Island’ development complies with environmental standards and the safety of the local community. We would also like to extend our gratitude to all parties who provided valuable input in shaping this EMP. With the approval from the relevant agencies, preparatory reclamation work for the project will commence on September 1, 2023, and will continue until all related works are completed.

Furthermore, in line with the State Government’s commitment to provide ex-gratia payments to the fishing community affected by the project following the EMP’s approval. We are pleased to announce that 75 percent of the ex-gratia payment will be credited in phases starting from September 1, 2023, with the remaining 25 percent to be disbursed in early 2024. The payment will be phased considering the reduced scope of the PSI project, which has been downsized to a single island compared to the initial plan. The development of the ‘Silicon Island’ project is designed based on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) principles.

It is expected to become a leading technology hub in the region, providing new employment opportunities and sustainable economic benefits to the local community. Initially, around 600 sea and land-based job opportunities will be offered in the coming 18 months, with priority given to fishermen and local residents.

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