Datuk Wira Idris Haron, is the Chief Minister of the government of Malacca one of the States that make up Malyasia.
He has a bold plan to turn the coastal areas of Klebang and Tanjung Kling into the next ‘Gold Coast’. He plans to build marinas and make them available to visiting yachts that pass through the Straits of Malacca.
He aims to use the construction of yet more marinas to not only boost tourism but also to create an economic spin off for the local economy. Idris told the newspaper New Straits Times that the marinas would be a private sector initiative that would be supported by government with land and other infrastructures.” He added, “With the marinas, we would also provide services such as maintenance for their vessels, medical attention, food and beverages and also other facilities.”
Yet marinas that have already been built along the coast lie deserted, washed away, or silted up completely. The domestic boating market in Malaysia is non existent. Six years ago the government set up a working group to create a local Boating License. Yet despite good intensions no license is yet available. Without one, you cannot get boat insurance and without insurance you cannot get a bank loan to buy a boat, no matter how small.
Speaking at the launching of two catamarans built by Boat Explorer the Minister suggested that up to 3000 yachts pass through the Straits each year yet records show that numbers are far less than that. Fewer than 100 yacht yachts over 24 metres used the Straits last year and around 750 or so much smaller yachts used the same waterway.