19/10/04 BUSINESS TIMES (MALAYSIA) - PORT Klang Authority (PKA) said itssister port relationships with several ports around the world have workedto increase trade and promote shipping and logistic services betweenMalaysia and the countries concerned.
PKA general manager Datin Paduka O.C. Phang said successful sister portrelationships forged include those with Brisbane, Marseille, San Antonio(Chile), Abu Dhabi, Ningbo (China) and Conakry (Guinea).
As an example, Phang cited PKA's sister port relationship with the Port ofMarseille Authority (PMA) in which the main focus is to develop and expandthe trade traffic and promote the shipping and logistic services betweenPKA and PMA.
"The areas of interest in establishing the sister port agreement are portstudies, training related to port operation and management, exchange ofinformation and technical assistance," she said after the signing of asupplemental agreement between PKA and PMA in Petaling Jaya yesterday. Thesigning ceremony was witnessed by Deputy Transport Minister Datuk DouglasUggah Embas.
PKA was represented by chairman Datuk Yap Pian Hon and Phang, while thefirst councillor to the Embassy of France in Malaysia, Emmanuel Bel, andPMA executive managing director Eric Brassart signed on behalf of PMA.
Earlier in her speech, Phang said the principal MOU between the two portswas signed in November 2001 as part of the broadening of the relationshipbetween Malaysia and France.
Current initiatives between PKA and PMA include developing Port Klang andMarseille as the mutual distribution centres for trade in their respectiveregions, promoting export of Malaysian palm oil and "halal" products viaMarseille, exchange of market information and trade statistics andpromotional visits and marketing conferences.
Phang said PMA has set up a palm oil and vegetable oil tank farminstallation facility at its port.
"PMA will provide a much cheaper and easier access to Europe and theMediterranean area. "In line with this plan, PKA is working with PMA touse Port Klang as the main palm oil export port and PMA as thedistribution port in Europe," she said.
Last year, the export of Malaysian palm oil to the European Union rose13.2 per cent, to 1.7 million tonnes from 1.5 million tonnes in 2002 Atthe same time, Phang said PKA has identified 75 potential "halal" foodmanufacturing companies to promote their business in Europe and Africa.These companies include Yeo Hiap Seng (M) Bhd, Nestle (M) Bhd,MameeDouble-Decker (M) Bhd and Malaysian Flour Mills Bhd.
She added that PMA is assisting in promoting the import of "halal"products to France and Africa.
Meanwhile, in his speech read out by Douglas, Transport Minister DatukSeri Chan Kong Choy said that last year, Port Klang handled 4,696 tonnesof cargo via Marseille, while the total amount of cargo handled via Frenchports was 366,007 tonnes.
Among Asean countries, Malaysia was France's second largest tradingpartner with Euro2.3 billion (Euro1 = RM4.75) last year.
France, meanwhile, is Malaysia's fourth largest trading partner in the EUwhere it accounted for 1.63 per cent of Malaysia's global trade last year.This comprised 1.74 per cent for exports and 1.49 per cent for imports.
Malaysian exports to France increased from RM2.75 billion in 2000 toRM6.66 billion last year.