Breaking news, Star's sms alert 24/8: All 37 charges against Port Klang assemblyman Datuk Zakaria Deros and 5 co-directors in 2 companies for violating Companies Act dropped today.
Meanwhile, theSun and Straits Times (Singapore) and the bloggers were dead wrong: there is no bail-out for the Klang Port Authority. There is what the government calls Soft Loan. Thanks, Johorean, for the alert.
Malaysian government to bail out port stuck with US$1 billion debt
By VIJAY JOSHI
Associated Press Writer
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) -- Malaysia will give a soft loan to rescue the country's main port authority from a debt of US$1 billion (€750 million) in a free port project, the government said Thursday.
The loan to the Port Klang Authority - tantamount to a bailout - is likely to raise questions about Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's pledges to boost transparency and battle financial mismanagement in mega-projects.
The scandal centers around the Port Klang Free Zone, or PKFZ, a much-hyped shipping area that opened in western Malaysia last year. It's original cost of 1.845 billion ringgit (US$527 million; euro405 million) ballooned to 4.2 billion ringgit (US$1.2 billion; euro923 million) by the time the project was completed in four years.
However, the total amount committed to the project by its 30 investors is only 725 million ringgit (US$207 million; euro160 million).
"Because the cost of PKFC is so high, the government has agreed to give a soft loan to (Port Klang Authority). The details are being worked out," a statement by the Transport Ministry said. It did not elaborate.
Friday, August 24, 2007
Fight against Corruption
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