International edition
September 20, 2021

Berjaya Group plans rejected

Malaysia dismisses casino talk

(Malaysia).- Datuk Mohamed Khaled, Malaysia’s chief executive, has rejected Berjaya Assets’ project to build a large-scale resort, possibly including a casino, in the Malaysian state of Johor. Khaled said the state will have no casinos as long as he is in office.

B

erjaya, an arm of the Berjaya Group conglomerate, had identified an 18-acre site near the Malaysia-Singapore causeway, according to Reuters, citing an unnamed source, and had developed plans for a resort including restaurants and nightclubs as part of an integrated destination aimed at a growing population of middle- and upper-income residents expected to locate in Iskandar Malaysia in the coming years.

However, Datuk Mohamed, the chief executive appointed by the sultan of Johor from the state’s majority political party, dismissed the plans, adding that he has yet to hear from Berjaya on the project one way or the other. “We did not receive any application, proposal or plans for the [casino] project,” he said.

The project would need the approval of state and some federal government agencies to proceed, including Malaysia’s Ministry of Finance, and its ability to attract a steady number of foreigners and locals, if it came to fruition, could pose a competitive threat to Singapore’s two resort casinos.

But Khaled left no doubt that if an application was received, or even if approval was granted by the federal government, Johor would oppose the project to ensure no casino ever gets built.

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