Malaysia's state-controlled Yayasan Sabah to award 80,937-hectare timber concession in Sabah and Sarawak to Permaju Holdings; company will help clear land of timber valued at more than a billion ringgit, plant oil palm

KUALA LUMPUR , January 7, 2013 () – Permaju Holdings Bhd, which is controlled by Tan Sri Chai Kin Kong, is close to securing some 80,937 hectares of timber concession land in Sabah and Sarawak.

Business Times was told that an announcement on the matter will be made by as early as this month.

"The bulk of the land is in Sabah, near the Keningau area," said a source close to Yayasan Sabah.

State-controlled Yayasan Sabah is the one awarding the concession.

The potential concession will make Permaju the single largest land concession owner in the "Land Below the Wind".

Permaju, at its peak, had some 129ha of stategiven land concession in Sabah.

Some of the said land has now been converted for development projects, while the rest has been surrendered to the state.

Business Times was told that the new award will eclipse Permaju's previous record holdings.

The impending award will be for a period of between 30 years and 60 years.

Under the terms of the contract, Permaju will help clear the land, said to be a virgin jungle area, and then plant oil palm.

The virgin jungle is filled with valuable timber, and proceeds from timber will go directly to Permaju.

It will, however, share with Yayasan Sabah any proceeds from the planned oil palm estate.

"Gross proceeds from the timber is easily more than RM1 billion," said the source.

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