JOHOR BAHRU, Malaysia, March 29, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Forest City, the high-profile smart new city built by Chinese property developer Country Garden Holdings and now in its third year, rose up from the ground in Eurasia's southeast corner. The city has attracted significant attention from industry watchers and the media worldwide and been named by Forbes as one of "five new cities that are set to shake up the future".
Forest City receives multiple awards from the Malaysian government for its CSR contributions
Forest City received a certificate from Malaysia's Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad in February for its support of the government's affordable housing agenda plan. Among the recipients, Forest City is the only foreign invested company to receive such an honour. On March 15, the city received the coveted Best Sustainable Green Development award for its construction-focused industrial park from Housing and Local Government Minister YB Zuraida Kamarudd as part of Des Prix Infinitus ASEAN Property Awards Malaysia. The awards are a strong testament to the recognition by the Malaysian government for Forest City's CSR contributions.
Forest City facilitates the implementation of the Chinese government's Belt and Road initiative and the development of local communities
As a milestone in the implementation of the Chinese government's Belt and Road initiative in Southeast Asia, Forest City has been recognized by media organizations as an innovative model for an urban milieu that smartly integrates industry and residential communities, while making significant contributions to the overseas expansion of Chinese companies. The smart and environmentally-friendly complex integrating high-tech industries with infrastructure-based development has greatly benefited Johor in terms of economic and social development. As of January 2019, Forest City had contributed more than 200 million ringgit (approx. 50 million USD) to the Johor state coffers in taxes and awarded contracts worth 1.6 billion ringgit (approx. 40 million USD) to 150 local companies. The complex at present has over 1,500 employees, 80% of which are local hires. The build out of the complex created more than 9,200 construction jobs, leading to the contribution to the government by the workers of 50 million ringgit (approx. 12 million USD) in personal income taxes.
In the early stage of development, Forest City, in partnership with McKinsey & Company, a worldwide management consultant firm, outlined eight business and industry sectors that, as a whole, would serve as a model for city-industry integration -- tourism and MICE, healthcare, education and training, green and smart technologies, regional headquarters, near-shore finance, e-commerce, and emerging technologies. Shattuck St Mary's School Forest City, the sole campus of the leading American private boarding school outside of the US, held its first classes on 23 August 2018. The opening of a health management firm has provided Forest City's multinational resident community with access to world-class healthcare. Some 50 retailers have established a presence along Forest City's commercial streets and 230,000 visits by travellers to Johor Bahru take place annually as a result of the presence of firms that have already set up operations there, all of which have greatly boosted the development of local tourism service providers, hotels, retailers and restaurants.
With continuous contributions to environmental protection, Forest City has implemented an ecologically-friendly approach in its construction-focused industrial park. The developer minimized the ecological footprint during construction by setting up an online monitoring system for water quality, and partnering with local universities and institutions to establish protection zones for sea grass and diversify the local ecological structure. In addition to a variety of practical measures, Forest City's industrial park has insisted on sustainability in construction projects by setting up a manufacturing plant in Asia capable of producing all the materials and components needed to support one million square meters of floorspace in new construction annually. Production of the components from this Industrialized Building System is also part of the effort to make sure that all the buildings that use the components are green ones.
Looking forward to the next stage, Forest City has embarked on its industry integration blueprint 2020, which aims to draw high-tech manufacturing plants to the 417-acre Industrial Hub. Forest City will continue to support the implementation of the Belt and Road initiative and adjacent infrastructure facilities, helping leading manufacturers, equipment makers and technology providers to expand outside of their home market.
SOURCE Country Garden Holdings