While the massive reclamation projects in Johor by marine engineering specialist Benalec Holdings Bhd have attracted much interest, analysts revealed that many issues remain unclear.

The projects resemble the plans of oil and gas service provider Dialog Group Bhd and Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) for Johor.

Measuring 1,760 acres in Pengerang and 3,485 acres in Tanjung Piai from the Johor government, Benalec’s land reclamation jobs will develop petrochemical and petroleum hubs and maritime industrial parks.

Benalec had refused to react on reports that the group was eyeing a parcel of land at the south-west of Tanjung Piai said to be ideal for deepwater petroleum terminal facility, comparable to what Dialog was developing in Pengerang.

Sources revealed that the to-be-reclaimed land in the south-east of Tanjung Piai might also include a container port to serve Petronas’s RAPID project.

However, Benalec said the Johor projects had only received approvals in principle from the state’s Economic Planning Unit (UPENJ).

Valid for six months, the approvals in principle were still subject to detailed analysis of the projects from UPENJ, including a feasibility study and an environmental impact assessment report.

"The projects in Johor will commence upon the satisfaction of the above approvals. The period of the projects would be determined upon the signing of formal agreements," said Benalec.

Benalec’s 70-percent owned sub-subsidiaries Spektrum Budi Sdn Bhd and Spektrum Kukuh Sdn Bhd have been granted the approvals.

The projected gross development value (GDV) in Tanjung Piai was RM4 million per acre and RM3 million per acre for Pengerang.

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