Johor Bahru, Johor – 5 January 2015: Country Garden Pacificview and the Forest City project to reclaim 1,623 hectares of sea to create land for mixed residential and commercial development is a project that, by its nature, has and will continue to generate much interest. In a move to correct any misconceptions and allay any stakeholder concerns, the company has embarked on a path of increased engagement and communication, opening the door for dialogue wherever possible.
In response to recent media reports, Datuk Md. Othman, Executive Director, Country Garden Pacificview, said: “This morning, media reported that Malaysia’s Department of Environment (DoE) had formally reduced the land development size of our project. We would like to express our thanks to the news platforms for their interest; and to clarify as there is more to the story.
“Country Garden Pacificview is fully compliant with the laws and regulations that govern the development of such projects. We have always taken into consideration the needs of the communities and those of the environments in which we operate. Country Garden Pacificview has infused responsible corporate governance into our DNA and adhering to international standards – even if they are more stringent than local rules and regulations – is an important part of our overall strategy. That said, we accept that we could have addressed questions and concerns more expediently, and we will be more engaging in explaining the project, moving forward.”
This morning’s news covered a discussion between DoE Malaysia and Country Garden Pacificview, in relation to the ‘Forest City Project.’ The clarifications to this coverage are:
DoE has verbally informed Country Garden Pacificview and will send an official letter soon, to limit the size of the project to less than 1,000 acres.
“Country Garden Pacificview is in constant communication with multiple stakeholders and regulatory authorities, ensuring that the project development always takes into consideration the needs of the communities and the needs of the environment. The DoE is one such regulatory authority that we engage and consult to ensure full compliance.
“In the most recent discussions, in late December 2014, DoE and Country Garden Pacificview discussed assessment directives and compliance to high standards. These discussions DO NOT mean that the project size is to be limited or compromised in any way.
“As a company committed to delivering quality projects that complement the environment, the community and the State’s economic growth, we welcome standards and guidelines to elevate the quality profile of the development and the surrounding communities.
“When the metrics, monitoring and assessment initiatives have been confirmed, Country Garden Pacificview will share the details in open forum.”
Reference was made to a presentation showing that work on the project had continued despite Country Garden Pacificview voluntarily stopping construction of the development.
“Country Garden Pacificview voluntarily ceased all construction at the site on the 16th June 2014. Any modification or change to the landmass is not due to construction, but due to natural displacement. We reiterate that all construction on site has ceased voluntarily, effective 16th June 2014.
“We voluntarily chose to cease construction because the DoE requested a (detailed) Environmental Impact Assessment to accompany the project’s viability assessment and State garnered approvals.
“At Country Garden Pacificview, we always ensure that our projects are compliant, adopt best practices of governance and that they fully represent the needs of the communities, the environment and the State’s economic development.
“To keep all stakeholders and interested parties up-to-date on the latest developments, and to answer any questions pertaining to the project, we are developing a dedicated online vehicle that will serve as a fully transparent FAQ and query response platform, which will be live by the end-of-the-week – Friday, 9th January. It is our commitment to answer all questions within 48 hours, subject to volume. As we anticipate a large number of questions and queries, if we don’t respond within 48 hours, please do drop us a line and let us know. It is also our commitment that no question or post will be deleted, unless it is deemed to have abusive or offensive content/language,” explained Datuk Md. Othman, Executive Director, Country Garden Pacificview.