Topic : Sectors that Influence the Economic Growth in Labuan in the 21st Century. Introductory Paragraph
Labuan is an island which is situated in the heart of the fast growing South Eastern Asian region, and close to a number of major cities and economic hubs such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta. According to Department of Statistics Malaysia, as of 1st July 2009, the population of Labuan is around 90,000 people. Labuan island is based on import-export oriented economy and virtually all of its commodities are crude oil, methanol, gas, flour, animal feed, sea products and ceramic tiles which are exported either to Peninsular Malaysia or overseas. Raw materials, parts and equipments for industrial use as well as consumer products are imported. In 2004, the total value of Labuan's external trade reached RM 11.8 billion from only RM5.0 billion in 1995 for a net trade surplus of RM5.1 billion. Among its major trade partners are India, Peninsular Malaysia, Sarawak and South Korea. Out of 100 percentage, 65 percentage of its exports are comprised of petroleum and gas-based products. Over 90 percentage of Labuan's external trades are conducted through seaports. This is a clear indication of Labuan's dependency on ports for its domestic industries and consumers. Labuan’s economic existence has traditionally depended on its deep water port and position at the confluence of Eastern Asian’s trade routes. Latterly, oil and gas exploration are the main contributors to the island’s economy. However, now financial services and tourism is also a growing industry in Labuan. There are 3 sectors that contribute to the economic growth in Labuan which are oil and gas exploration , financial services and tourism sector. Background Paragraph
Labuan is an island that has historical backgrounds. Labuan had a glorious history because it was ruled by various empires. In the 14th century, after the demise of the Majapahit Empire, Labuan came under the rule of the Brunei Sultanate. On 1 August 1848 Labuan was declared a free port and open to settlers. Then, British officially declared Labuan as a colony of British Empire in 1849 and renamed it as Victoria. Port Victoria or Labuan town, was chosen as the commercial area as naval officers considered that its anchorage to be the best for shipping. The revenue seldom collected was 3,665 while expenditure totalled 4,153. Revenue was chiefly raised from retail licenses, duties on liquor and tobacco. Obviously trade did not flourish as briskly as the Labuan founders had hoped. Prahus from Sulu and North East Borneo carrying pearls and bird's nests did not find it worthwhile to call at Labuan. Coal, found at the northern end of the island, was worked by mining companies between 1847 and 1911. It was first worked by William Miles between April 1847 and July 1849, under contract for the Eastern Archipelago Company. He picked the surface of seams close to the water's edge. Miles also obtained the concession to import and sell liquor. A light railway track was built from the colliery at Coal Point or Tanjung Kubong to Port Victoria. One persistent problem that faced the coal mining companies was of labour. There were often riots and strikes. Workers from Brunei and Malaya, and convicts from India, on finishing their contracts or had served their sentences left the island quickly. The lack of basic amenities and the prevalence of malaria were cited as the causes of discontent. There was no shortage of interest in Labuan's coal as seen in the many mining companies. Among them were the Labuan Coal, the Amalgamated China Steamship and Labuan Coal and the Oriental Coal. Generally these companies were poorly managed. At the time, Labuan coal was not of the highest quality. It burned more quickly than Welsh coal, made much more smoke, was badly hewn and badly washed. Highest output was about 5000 tons a week. In 1881, only 800 tons were produced. Coal trade soon declined and coal carrying...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document