Friday, January 30, 2009

Sabah's Marginal Gas Reserves but deserves RM2billion pipeline?

Who is this idiotic John Teo?

What is wrong with Sabahans in Petronal board of directors?
Isn't Sabah a major contributor to Petronas Revenue?

And yet not a single Sabahan in Petronas board of directorship?

And what is wrong with SAbahans demanding that the GAs and Oil in
Sabah remain in SAbah's land?
It belongs to SAbah only, not to Malaysia or rather MALAYA!

Now, the irony is that SAbah does not even get a single cent of what
had been extracted from SAbah apart from the maintainance and
environmental costs to Sabah.

The gas pipleline will be even worse. As mentioned, despite being
marginal, Petronas would rather destroy the beauty of SAbah and the
livelihood of its citizens in return for a marginal revenue from
Sabah's gas.

And worse, Sabah does not even get a single share of gas subsides
being deprived of subsidised gas, while forced to take SUBSIDED COAL,
which will destroy Sabah's environment even more. The much cleaner gas
is denied to Sabah and only available to Malaysia, i.e Malaya with all
the IPP and gas pump stations available in Malaysia but not in Sabah.

The start reality is that Sabah has never been considered as
Malaysia, only a subject of Malaysia to be exploited and not to be
given any subsidies, so refering to West Malaysia as only Malaysia is
only correct. After all, that is what West Malaysians keep on calling
themselves among each other as Malaysians, never as West Malaysians
despite not even a single Sabahan being involved, let alone benefit.

As for Indonesian oil wells not being dug anymore for the last ten
years, it will benefit them in the long run. Their standard of living,
as judged by the much higher poverty index compared to Sabah is more
factual proof of this policy. Sabah will remain poor as there is not a
single project to reduce poverty in Sabah, only hard-core poverty, and
oil revenue or even subsidies continue to be denied from Sabah.

Not even a single budget had been allocated to the Sabah Development
Corridor apart from the stealing of SAbah's land, against all
constitutional provisions that land should belong to the State
Government, not Federal Government.

Relying more on private investment that will never come without any
subsidised and clean power for Sabah using Sabah's own gas and oil
reserves. The projected increase in GDP is meaningless when it is just
a normal increase in such a long time frame, and it will never reduce
the incidence of poverty in Sabah because by that time the population
of Sabah will increase tremendously as well.

Tourism is emphasised and yet a dirty Coal Power Plant from China
using highly subsidised coal is to be built in Sandakan. It will
pollute the entire seas in the East Coast of Sabah destroying the
turtle islands and sipadan Islands because the main target is to strip
mine Danum Valley for Coal.

Then SDC would have succeeded because the amount of Money collected by
the Federal Govenment will be immense thus increasing the GDP of
SAbah, just as Oil is, and yet, little of it goes to Sabahans, only to
Malaysians, i.e. Malayans.

Sabah Economy PDF Print E-mail
Sabah's economy was traditionally heavily lumber dependent, based on
export of tropical timber, but with increasing depletion of the
natural forests and ecological efforts to save remaining natural
rainforest areas, palm oil has emerged as a more sustainable resource.
Other agricultural products important in the Sabah economy include
rubber and cacao. Tourism is currently the second largest contributor
to the economy. There are other exports; like seafood & vegetable.

In 1970, Sabah ranked as one of the richest states in the federation,
with a per capita GDP second only to Selangor (which then included
Kuala Lumpur).[16] However, despite its vast wealth of natural
resources, Sabah is currently the poorest of Malaysia's states.
Average incomes are now among the lowest in Malaysia, and with a
considerably higher cost of living than in West Malaysia. In 2000,
Sabah had an unemployment rate of 5.6 per cent - the highest of any
Malaysian state and almost twice the national average of 3.1 per cent.
The state has the highest poverty level in the country at 16 per cent,
more than three times the national average. Part of the problem is the
inequitable distribution of wealth between the State and the Federal
government, and large numbers of illegal immigrants from Indonesia,
Philippines, even East Timor, whose population was estimated to be in
the region of half a million people.

The recent tabling of Ninth Malaysia Plan has allocated RM16.908
billion for Sabah, the second highest state allocation after
Sarawak's. The funds is pledged to improve the state's rural areas,
improving the state's transportation and utilities infrastructures and
boosting the economy of Sabah. The government has placed its focus on
three major areas of the economy which have the potential to be
Sabah's growth engine. These are agriculture, manufacturing and
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 12 November 2008 )

If you read these figures, it certainly contradict the UNHDP figures
of 23% when Poverty income was stated at RM690 in 2006. In 2007 the
poverty income has increased to RM820 so most probably the incidence
of poverty should increase even more instead of getting less than 16%.

And the budget has been reduce to only RM16 billion from RM20 billion
which was only 7.9% of total national budget for Sabah's population of
14% and area of 23%. Now it will be even much less. What hope is there
for SAbah.

Physical evidence supports the lack of funding for SAbah because for
more than 20 years the road to Mersilau, Kudasang, a highland region
is much worse than Batak, Sumatra in the 1980s. At least I didn't
encounter any landslides or broken roads. I though land in the Crocker
range may be too unstable but after 20 years, it still remains
unstable. The only explanation is that insufficient fund is allocated
to stabilise the roads compared to Batak highland roads 20 years ago
in Sumatra, Indonesia.

The future for Sabah is indeed very bleak.

JOHN TEO Stark choice over Sabah's gas resources
By : John Teo
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UNLIKE many fellow Malaysians who waxed unambiguously euphoric about
March 8 last year, I tend to vacillate between euphoria and
despondency, and more often than not, the latter.
It is of course to be expected that we as a nation and people think
only the best of ourselves; that collectively the good in us outweighs
the bad and that when the occasion demands, we will all rise to the
occasion. Not so fast.

My despondency is mostly a function of my observations of what happens
in our neighbourhood. It is mostly a tale of popular euphoria over the
triumph of the popular will against dark political forces, followed
soon after by a return to the sordid business-as-usual.

Sure, there are groups in the region who stand vigilant and on guard
all the time and are brave enough to always stand up to be counted if
need be.

But that is not the point. Such people on the vanguard fighting the
cause of democracy for democracy's sake may be heroic but completely
miss the point, in my reckoning. Democracy's not at fault. Not
usually, anyway. But people are.
The reason why a country such as the Philippines remains needlessly
impoverished despite literally sitting atop mounds of gold and other
precious minerals is not because of a lack of democracy but rather,
its excess.

The God-given natural wealth of the Philippines remains largely
untapped because there are any number of vested groups -- some with
purely selfish intent, others not -- willing and able to make sure the
wealth remains untouched.

Democracy in action, surely, but a poor democracy is an unstable
democracy and thus, the dismal vicious cycle turns.

When I point to the uninspiring record of our neighbours in nation-
building, the usual rejoinder is, why should we look at uninspiring
role models in the region and not more inspiring ones further afield,
such as Australia and New Zealand?

Fair enough -- except that I think we are putting laudable idealism
way ahead of the sad reality we face.

The reality, for example, that had the decision not been made well
before last March 8 to tap Sabah's offshore gas reserves, we may well
be looking now at a made-in-Malaysia Philippine scenario: that Sabah's
gas resources may remain untouched, perhaps for eternity.

For, as clearly enunciated recently by Petronas, Sabah's rather
marginal gas reserves are only commercially recoverable if piped to
the existing processing facilities serving the far richer gas patches
offshore in Bintulu, Sarawak.

But powerful political forces in Sabah, emboldened by the fact of a
severely weakened Federal Government post-March 8, are unabashedly
pandering to the populist outcry to scrap the gas pipeline from Sabah
to Bintulu.

These political groups had better be careful what they wish for, since
scrapping the pipeline may well render the expensive project to
extract Sabah's offshore gas no longer commercially viable. No
pipeline, no gas from Sabah. The choice cannot be any more stark.

But, of course, the fight to oppose the pipeline may be nothing more
than a smokescreen. There were unsubtle hints and demands about
representation for Sabahans (read: politically well-connected
Sabahans) on lucrative Petronas company boards.

Which brings me to the other unfortunate role model of a newly-
democratic Indonesia, which has also newly become a net oil importer
precisely because squabbles -- usually politically tinged -- helped
ensure the country has not invested in new oil wells for over a

Is there a real economic trade-off for political liberalisation in
these parts? You better believe it.

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