IPOH: Aug 11, 2008 By HAH FOONG LIAN
Perak will adopt the open tender system to sell state land to increase its revenue and enhance transparency in its administration.
It is also the first state in the country to have a written set of guidelines, to be revealed later, for the open tender system when selling state land.
Announcing the policy during a working visit at the state Land and Mines Office here Monday, Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said:
"We want to practise transparency and at the same time increase the state revenue."
He pointed out that there were parcels of land which many applicants were interested in and awarding them through the system would prevent various accusations from being hurled at the state government.
"We don't want to award to any individual because that would open ourselves to unnecessary problems. So we are going to award the land to the highest bidder," he said.
"If we were to award the land to any company A or B, we would be accused of cronyism and not being transparent," he added.
Nizar said the state Valuation Department would determine a reserve price and all bidders must pay 25% more than the reserve price.
Priority, he said, would be given to Perak citizens to take part in the bidding.
For a start, he said, the state government had identified nine pieces of land in the nearby Hulu Kinta district for the open tender system.
"Some of them are 0.4ha, some are 4ha and 0.2ha but they fetch a high price because they are centrally located," he said, adding that the system would be extended to land in other districts.
After the state had obtained the reserve price from the Valuation Department, he said, an advertisement would be put up to announce the bidding.
According to a spokesman at the Land and Mines Office, the guideline required a survey to be conducted on a particular piece of land and a land title would be issued.
Only after the highest bidder had successfully become the rightful owner, the person's name would be written on the land title, he said.
Terengganu and Sabah also conducted the open tender system but the two states did not have a set of written guidelines or policy on the matter, he added.