Labuan to get 170 new parking lots
Published on: Tuesday, July 10, 2018
Kota Kinabalu: Labuan town or formerly in colonial era known as Victoria is to get some 170 new parking bays to help to alleviate the lack of parking space for vehicles right in the CBD centre of town.
This was disclosed by Norman Wong, the Managing Director of Wong Chik Lim Holdings Sdn Bhd to Daily Express, Labuan and Sabah’s leading the daily newspaper, recently.
The said company, founded by prominent Labuan businessman late Tan Sri Wong Chik Lim, is the owner of approximately two acres where a former vehicle showroom used to be located.
Norman said that the car park site will be landscaped with trees left intact, conducive for public social gathering, and the building converted into a public space with retail space to be let out.
“We plan a section, specially for food trucks to be stationed to ply their business there,” he revealed.
Labuan is a free port even before it became a Federal Territory, enjoys lower priced vehicles compared to Sabah and other parts of East Malaysia which led to cheaper vehicle ownership costs, encouraging traffic congestion on the island’s capital town.
“Stagnant,” was how Wong opined of the current economic situation on the island when asked by Daily Express, now well served by four ferries of four different companies plying the connection route between Menumbok and Labuan.
Asked why his company sold off the only multi-storey office block Wisma Oceanic to Datuk Joseph Ambrose Lee, Wong said with the advent of the IOFC and its building complex, they had correctly foreseen that key bank and government agency tenants would be pressured to shift to the government built complex.
Wong opined that the government should not compete with the private sector in business, but to encourage and support the private sector so that profits would be reinvested back into the local economy and grow the economic pie.
He said tourism, like the IOFC potential, has not been optimally developed to benefit Labuan.
It is hoped that the Sabah government could look into how to synergise economic ties with Labuan in all aspects long ignored in the past for mutual benefit as the island was part of Sabah, and Tun Mahathir, the leader whose idea to turn Labuan into a IOFC is now back in power as prime minister. – David Thien