KOTA KINABALU: A South Korean company making copper sheets was the biggest foreign investor in Sabah in 2021.
Deputy Chief Minister Datuk, Dr. Joachim Gunsalam, said the company, SK Nexilis Malaysia Sdn Bhd, invested RM4.2 billion in the state last year.
He also said the total amount of foreign investment in the state was RM4.37 billion in 2021, eclipsing the RM11.5 million recorded in 2020.
The Covid-19 pandemic started in 2020 and had global ramifications.
“Nexilis is our biggest foreign investment so far,” Gunsalam, who serves as state minister for industrial development, said when closing proceedings for his ministry at the state assembly meeting on Wednesday 23 March.
Gunsalam said his ministry has set up a task force made up of 26 state and federal agencies to help attract big investors to Sabah.
One of the main goals, he said, was to speed up the process for investors from expressing interest to setting up operations in the state.
In the case of SK Nexilis, he said the task force helped expedite the process and secure factory land in the Kota Kinabalu Industrial Park (KKIP) in seven months.
The company is expected to create around 7,000 jobs during its construction phase and 400 jobs when commissioned by early 2024.
He also said a Chinese company producing solar panels is also expected to take off shortly after signing a deal with KKIP Sdn Bhd earlier this month.
Gunsalam said the company is expected to create 1,800 jobs at KKIP’s photovoltaic glass plant and another 300 jobs at the silica processing plant in the northern Kudat region.