Iskandar Investment launched the Net Zero Carbon Central Business District (CBD) in Medini Iskandar on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Climate Week as the first CBD in the ASEAN region.
A spokesperson from the investment company, which was established to develop the Iskandar city in the state of Johor, confirmed to ISFI that it is currently exploring Islamic and conventional partnerships to bring the initiative to life.
Iskandar Investment is looking to attract investments worth RM9 billion (US$1.92 billion) as part of its Iskandar development efforts.
As part of the launch of the initiative, Iskandar Investment signed MoUs with Maybank and Malaysia Green Technology and Climate Change Corporation. The latter MoU outlines a collaboration agreement on technology adoptions and implementation of value drivers in establishing the CBD.
While the MoU with Maybank is still in the exploratory stage, Khairussaleh Ramli, the president and CEO of Maybank Group, remarked that the collaboration will see the integration of nature-based solutions.
The nature-based solution projects will contribute to land preservation, the generation of carbon credits and creating green jobs for local communities. According to the CEO, it will set a benchmark for the Malaysian market.
Notably, the Malaysia Forest Fund (MFF) also signed an MoU as part of the CBD initiative to provide sustainable financing solutions, transition support and nature-based solutions for the carbon project under the CBD.
The MoU represents a tripartite agreement between the MFF, the Johor State Forest Department and Permodalan Darul Ta’zim, a wholly-owned entity by the Johor state government incorporated to bridge the government with the private sector.
MFF CEO Jeffri Abd Rasid told ISFI in October this year that the company was looking to sign several MoUs with Malaysian corporates to develop high-quality nature-based solution projects.
The CBD was established as part of the larger RM180 million (US$38.43 million) ‘Johor Green Deal’, which aims to accelerate Johor’s local sustainability agenda while supporting broader regional efforts in sustainable practices through public–private sector partnerships.
The CBD will contribute to the third objective of the green deal, which focuses on sustainable economic development.
“It seeks to ensure that communities benefit from fair and sustainable development while making efficient use of resources.
“The ultimate goal is to advance a low-carbon, sustainable and high-quality living environment in Johor,” Onn Hafiz Ghazi, the Menteri Besar of Johor, commented.