KUCHING: Sarawak can achieve a per capita income of more than RM45,000 by 2020 if a substantial number of young Sarawakians pursue technical education, says Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud.
In his Hari Raya Aidilfitri message, the chief minister said the state government was now working closely with institutions of higher learning from countries such as Australia and India to speed up the development of technical education.
"For Sarawak, I think the per capita income would be higher than the projected RM45,000. I think it is achievable with the condition that our young people have high ambition and involve themselves in technical education.
"Sarawak has four universities now, and we will set up more technical schools in the coming 10 years.
"I would like to urge our children, especially those from the rural areas, to take up technical education now.
"I would also like to thank Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak for giving us the approval to set up Universiti Teknologi in Sibu. This is a positive move for the development of technical education in the state."
He pointed out that the need for a huge number of technically skilled people was hastened by the development of the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE).
Giving an update on SCORE, Taib said at least 10 factories would be constructed in Samalaju soon. He said he was pleased that Samalaju had mushroomed into a new township with a capacity to accommodate at least 15,000 people.
"In Tanjung Manis (which forms a part of SCORE), a fish-cultivating company has started a project where its processes will not involve any chemicals. It will attract world attention as the products it produces will be of high quality when compared to other similar food sources.
"The product will be well received, especially by the halal market, as its biotech processes will follow all the required cleanliness procedures."
The chief minister said the smooth growth of SCORE and other development projects in the state was due to political stability in the country.
As such, he hoped that the people would continue to rally behind Najib and the Barisan Nasional (BN), especially in the coming 13th general election.
"Give your undivided support to the BN to ensure that the country achieves its goal of becoming a high income nation by 2020.
"As we all know, the minimum wage order will be fully enforced soon. I think it is a good starting point. Apart from that, the 10th Malaysian Plan (10MP) and the following plans are all aimed to increase the per capita income of the people."
The Borneo Post Online