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Dinner Welcome Remarks by Mr Danial Mah Abdullah, Director-General of Labuan FSA For The Visit by Head of State, Penang Tuan Yang Terutama Tun Dato' Seri Utama (Dr.) Haji Abdul Rahman Bin Haji Abbas

Speeches

Visit by Head of State, Penang

Tuan Yang Terutama Tun Dato' Seri Utama (Dr.) Haji Abdul Rahman Bin Haji Abbas

16th August 2020

Dinner Welcoming Remarks by

Mr Danial Mah Abdullah
Director-General, Labuan FSA 

Bismillahirrahmanirrahim
Tuan Yang Terutama
Tun Dato' Seri Utama (Dr.) Haji Abdul Rahman Bin Haji Abbas
Yang di-Pertua Negeri Pulau Pinang

Yang Amat Berbahagia Toh Puan Dato’ Seri Utama Hajah Majimor Bt. Shariff

Yang Berhormat Datuk Rozman bin Haji Isli,
Member of Parliament, Labuan

Pengerusi-pengerusi Industri Labuan IBFC
Para hadirin yang dihormati
Assalamualaikum W.B.T dan Salam Sejahtera
1. Bagi pihak Labuan FSA dan industri Labuan IBFC, saya merakamkan setinggi-tinggi penghargaan kepada Tuan Yang Terutama Tun Dato' Seri Utama (Dr.) Haji Abdul Rahman Bin Haji Abbas
Yang di-Pertua Negeri Pulau Pinang dan Yang Amat Berbahagia Toh Puan Dato’ Seri Utama Hajah Majimor Bt. Shariff, di atas kesudian untuk melawat Pulau Labuan dan meluangkan masa bersama-sama kita pada hari ini.

2. Saya juga ingin mengambil kesempatan untuk mengalu-alukan kedatangan para hadirin dan mungkin belum terlambat untuk mengucapkan selamat tahun baharu 2020 dan juga ucapan tahun baru Cina oleh rakan-rakan kita yang akan meraikannya tidak lama lagi. Semoga negara kita kekal aman dan bersatu padu dalam mencapai sasaran Malaysia sebagai negara yang maju dan gemilang menjelang tahun 2030.

3. Kami amat berharap agar kunjungan Tuan Yang Terutama Tun dan Toh Puan ke Labuan walaupun dalam masa yang singkat, akan meninggalkan kenangan manis dan memberi peluang bagi mengenali Labuan dengan lebih dekat lagi. Moga selepas pulang dari lawatan ini, Labuan walaupun jauh di mata tapi tetap dekat di hati Tuan Yang Terutama Tun dan Toh Puan.

4. Bagi pihak Labuan FSA, kami mengucapkan ribuan terima kasih kepada Tuan Yang Terutama Tun dan Toh Puan kerana meluangkan masa untuk melawat Sekolah Antarabangsa Labuan dan merasmikan ‘Art Gallery of Labuan International School’. Kami juga berharap sesi taklimat di pejabat Labuan FSA petang tadi telah memberi gambaran lebih terperinci mengenai perkembangan terkini Labuan IBFC. Semoga kunjungan kali ini akan membuka peluang-peluang baharu untuk kerjasama yang lebih erat di antara dua pulau Mutiara - Pulau Pinang, Mutiara Timur dengan Labuan, Mutiara Borneo.


Tuan Yang Terutama Tun,
saya mohon izin untuk meneruskan ucapan saya dalam Bahasa Inggeris.

Ladies and Gentlemen,


5. Indeed, 2020 has started with an auspicious beginning for Labuan with the first dignitary visit to the island by the Head of State of Penang. We are greatly honoured to welcome Tuan Yang Terutama Tun and Toh Puan to Labuan, just after four months from Labuan FSA’s event which we organised in Penang. This visit certainly symbolizes the strong bilateral ties we have established and we hope to foster further the friendship and business relationship between the two islands.

6. As some of you may be aware, although I have stayed in Labuan for 23 years, I was born in Penang. I like to say Labuan is similar to Penang, both are not short of scenic sights surrounded by blue sea. Though the two islands are geographically apart, but they share many common features such as sandy beaches and beautiful skies. And both have rich, common history and heritage from the British times and witnessed the battles between the Allied and Japanese forces during the World War II. Talking about history, I am sure there is bit of the past that many may not be aware of. In the 16th century, Admiral Cheng Ho stopped by in both Labuan and Penang during his epic voyage from China to the West. The only difference is that Penang has a temple and a footprint to mark his visit; but unfortunately Labuan didn’t have one. In fact, as history recalls of Admiral Cheng Ho’s pursuits, it was Melaka that stole the limelight. So, now Labuan FSA is commissioning a book on this story and hope this will further promote tourism in Labuan, especially to attract tourists from China.

7. Enough of history, on to the business side - Penang is regarded as the Silicon Valley of the East and has one of the largest economies in Malaysia. Comparatively, Labuan was declared as an International Business Financial Centre to complement the domestic financial sector in Kuala Lumpur. With these similarities, it is therefore opportune and timely for the two islands to forge ties and reap the benefits from such synergy.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

8. This year is special for Labuan IBFC as it celebrates its 30th year anniversary. Over the three decades, the centre has endured many challenges and attained many milestone achievements.

9. Businesses in Labuan IBFC continue to grow. The diverse business sectors in Labuan IBFC such as banking, insurance and corporate services continued to grow and fulfil the region’s financial and intermediation needs. In recent times, the growth in digital innovative financial business has gained in momentum, partly due to the business-facilitative approach adopted by Labuan FSA in embracing digital revolution. There is now a growing “digital family” of more than 30 Fintech-related companies present in Labuan IBFC conducting various digital businesses ranging from digital banking, insurtech to digital intermediaries such as robo-advisory, digital exchanges, crypto trading platforms, blockchain tokens as well as e-payment systems. And more are in the pipeline. In fact, we are also digitally enhancing the Labuan International School, which is owned by Labuan FSA, by partnering with an e-wallet service provider to enable digital transactions in the school.

10. Labuan IBFC is home to more than 6,000 active entities, employing about 5,000 people. And with substance requirements fully effected last year, we hope to see more to be employed in Labuan IBFC. Already, we are seeing a spike in demands for office space – to the extent that Financial Park Complex’s business occupancy was said to have reached its maximum capacity. Coupled with more oil rigs being deployed into operation this year, things are certainly looking positive for Labuan. While Labuan FSA demands for the industry to have higher substance in Labuan, we have also liberalised other requirements as a balancing act – For instance, Labuan entities are now allowed to set up marketing offices in more places in Malaysia, including Penang. Now, some Labuan banks are setting up Penang offices to expand their northern Malaysian market. And this is one way how Labuan could help contribute economic benefits and generate business opportunities to other cities, like Penang.

11. In addition, the various financial services offered out of Labuan can be capitalised on to facilitate businesses, financing of infrastructural developments and investments into Penang. For example, a Labuan bank specialising in infrastructure construction has or will be providing financial loans for some projects in Penang.

12. Business aside, we believe there are certainly lots of more positive synergies to be uncovered between Penang and Labuan. We will continue to work on this strategic collaboration and bring about more mutual benefits for both islands.

Tuan Yang Terutama Tun dan Toh Puan,

13. Your visit to Labuan marks a major milestone for us and it is a great honour for us to host your visit. We hope that this visit will be etched in your minds as a memorable Labuan stay for a long, long time. We also hope that you have enjoyed the unique Labuan experience for the past two days and we hope Tuan Yang Terutama Tun dan Toh Puan would have more visits to our island again in the near future.

14. I would like to once again express our utmost appreciation and gratitude to Tuan Yang Terutama Tun and Toh Puan, for visiting Labuan and for being with us tonight.

Assalamualaikum Warahmatulahi wabarakatuh. 
Mr Danial Mah Abdullah
Director-General, Labuan FSA
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