KUALA LUMPUR,.Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali said the government will table a white paper on the Federal Land Development Authority’s (Felda) financial health and the strategic plans for its recovery.
He said the paper will be tabled in the next Parliament session, and is in line with the government’s move to improve the wellbeing of Felda settlers in line with the Land Development Act 1956.
“The immediate focus of Felda’s new board of directors and management is to restore its fiscal flow via discussions with its creditors, and to restructure its loans which have now reached over RM8.025 billion,” Azmin said at the Dewan Rakyat today.
To strengthen its fiscal flow, he said Felda will sell off certain non-strategic assets both domestically and abroad.
“Another key focus of the board and management is to implement the statutory obligations for the settlers. We guarantee them that the livelihood loans and revenue advances (‘pinjaman sara hidup & pendahuluan hasil’) will be paid on schedule,” Azmin said in a reply to Kalabakan MP Ma’mun Sulaiman’s question on Felda’s latest restructuring exercise.
Azmin was also asked by Keningau MP Datuk Jeffrey Kitingan if the government will return Felda lands in Sabah to the state government as it has failed to develop them.
He replied: “This has to be analysed in terms of the status of land ownership. If Felda indeed failed to develop the lands provided by the Sabah state government, then this is a matter which the new board and management must look at.
“However the new government’s priority is to secure Felda settlers’ interests and prosperity, including more efficiency regarding the lands which were handed to Felda.”