Perak should not be content with merely being producers of raw materials. In fact, they should be complemented with downstream activities to ensure that the returns are value-added and will prompt creation of high-level job opportunities for Perakeans.
HRH Sultan of Perak, Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah, however, said that health, safety and environmental factors should be prioritised and long-term benefits that can be brought upon the state cannot be compromised.
“We must heed lessons of the past, as documented by the prolonged decimation of Perak’s landscapes caused by tin mining activities, which had rendered severe damages to the state and citizens.
“There’s an estimated 1,687,500 tonnes of non-radioactive rare earth elements (NR-REE) that can be found in Perak.
“Owing to its extensive usage in countless high-tech, healthcare and defence industries, NR-REE has emerged as one of the most important minerals at present and in the foreseeable future.”
Sultan Nazrin said in his royal address while officiating the Perak State Legislative Assembly (DUN) meeting at the state secretariat building today (August 25).
Sultan Nazrin added, Menteri Besar Incorporated (MB Inc) has taken the initiative to explore available avenues in establishing collaborations with scientists and experts to undertake research on the newly discovered mineral.
“The state government has started a pioneer project in the mining of NR-REE on 213.8 hectares of land in Perak. At the same time, the government is practicing caution by not hastily granting licenses to prevent large-scale NR-REE mining.
“With that said, the desire to develop Perak more rapidly depends on the strength of the state government’s financial resources,” he mentioned.