With the Malaysian government committed to transforming its cities into sustainable and smart cities, Malaysia – along with the UK – jointly launched the “Smart City Handbook: Malaysia” to promote collaboration in smart city development between both countries.
The handbook, which was launched virtually by Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Zuraida Kamaruddin, outlines the smart city landscape in Malaysia, while providing examples of UK smart city projects and expertise, reported Bernama.
It also offers suggestions on where and how UK companies can assist Malaysia in solving and managing various issues in developing sustainable and smart cities.
The virtual event was also attended by British High Commissioner to Malaysia Charles Hay.
During her opening remarks, Zuraida noted that turning Malaysian cities into sustainable and smart cities is primary in the country’s national agenda.
Launched in September 2019, the Malaysia Smart City Framework serves as a national reference and guide for cities, local governments and other stakeholders in developing and implementing smart city initiatives, she said.
She revealed that cities in Johor, Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Putrajaya and Kota Kinabalu had initiated various smart city initiatives. Some of them were made in collaboration with foreign countries such as the UK as well as international organisations like Mott MacDonald and The United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat).
The Ministry of Housing and Local Government (KPKT), which will work closely with relevant local authorities, will serve as a facilitator of the implementation of the smart cities.
“In this regard, KPKT seeks strategic partnership and investment opportunities to assist in financing smart cities,” said Zuraida.
Meanwhile, Hay shared that the UK and Malaysia had long-standing broad bilateral relationships, adding that the launch of the handbook was a great example of the modern partnership that was expanded to reflect new challenges, especially in adopting new technologies.
“Urbanisation is happening rapidly almost everywhere in the world. We have a lot of experiences to share, especially in creative fields such as innovation, digital technology, the Internet of things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI),” he said as quoted by Bernama.
He revealed that the UK is actively working with development authorities in Melaka and Iskandar Malaysia under the Global Future Cities Programme 2019-2022 of the UK Prosperity Fund.