Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Taib at the official opening ceremony of Kingwood Hotel, Mukah.

Sarawak’s first railway is being planned to link Tanjung Manis in Mukah and Similajau in Bintulu Division under the development of the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE).

Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud, in announcing the project yesterday, said efficient transportation was required in the corridor to meet the demands and expectations of potential investors.

“We estimate that by 2020, cargo movement between Tanjung Manis and Similajau will be about five million tonnes annually,” Taib was quoted as saying by The Star.

However, Taib did not give details of the project between Tanjung Manis, where the state’s halal hub is situated, and Similajau, where a deep sea port is being developed.

Nevertheless, Taib said development would be accelerated in Tanjung Manis although it was one of the more difficult areas to develop in Sarawak due to the land condition.

“In three years’ time, Tanjung Manis will become a major centre for halal food and biotech industries,” he said.

Besides the railway, he said the government would begin building UiTM’s Mukah permanent campus in October. The campus would be big enough to accommodate 2,000 students.