Najib welcomes probes into MPP, TSGP projects

(Bernama) – Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said today that he welcomed transparent and open probes into the Multi-Product Pipeline (MPP) and the Trans-Sabah Gas Pipeline (TSGP) projects.

“To my recollection, I am confident that all necessary procedures and laws have been complied with in the negotiations and execution of the two pipeline projects raised by Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng today.

“I also note that Guan Eng had stated that all payments were made as per agreement to the China Petroleum Pipeline Bureau, a fully-owned subsidiary of one of the largest companies in the world, the China state-owned China National Petroleum Corporation — not to any other parties,” he said in a posting uploaded on his Facebook and Twitter accounts.

The two pipeline projects which will be of much economic and energy security benefits to Malaysia were negotiated on a government-to-government basis with the People’s Republic of China, he said.

“China’s Premier Li Keqiang and I had witnessed the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the pipeline projects along with other projects while in Beijing on May 14, 2017.

At the same event, China had also committed to importing goods worth US$2 trillion (RM7.98 trillion) over the next five years from Malaysia, invest up to US$150 billion in Malaysia and offer 10,000 places for training and studies in various institutes in China,” he said.

He also noted the commitment by China in assisting Malaysian oil palm smallholders and contributing to their income and welfare through the purchase of more oil palm.

“While I welcome open and transparent investigations into these two projects, I believe that great care be taken when making such serious politically-motivated public allegations involving foreign state-owned companies as it may have a negative effect on foreign relations and international trade,” he added.

Lim today was reported as asking former Treasury secretary-general Tan Sri Irwan Serigar Abdullah and Najib to explain the lopsided and questionable agreement valued at RM9.4 billion signed by Suria Strategic Energy Resources Sdn Bhd (SSER).

SSER is a wholly-owned Ministry of Finance subsidiary set up on May 19, 2016 with the specific intent to undertake the Multi-Product Pipeline (MPP) and the Trans-Sabah Gas Pipeline (TSGP) projects.

Both projects amounting to RM9.41 billion were awarded to China Petroleum Pipeline Bureau (CPPB), whereby negotiation was done solely by the Prime Minister’s Department, without involving Treasury officials.