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Malaysia's 'Silicon Valley' suffers from four-day water cut

  • Malaysia's 'Silicon Valley' suffers from four-day water cut

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Northern Malaysia is bracing for a water crisis affecting over half a million households and businesses, as a crucial treatment plant undergoes engineering works, causing a four-day disruption which started on Wednesday, according to officials.

Zawya reports that the impact is felt acutely in Penang state, often referred to as the "Silicon Valley of the East," where numerous manufacturing facilities have been compelled to halt operations. School closures and the postponement of minor surgeries in some hospitals further underscore the severity of the situation.

Efforts to mitigate the crisis include the deployment of approximately 100 water tanks, but discontent among residents persists. Ooi Chin Hock, a former investment banker, expressed frustration over the four-day water shortage and stockpiled water in large containers at his home. He criticized the disruption as a "black dot on the state."

Northern Malaysia is bracing for a water crisis affecting over half a million households and businesses

Repair works at the Sungai Dua water treatment plant, responsible for supplying water to about 80 percent of the state, involve replacing two sizable leaking and rusted water valves. Additional repairs on leaky pipes in various locations are also scheduled during the interruption.

Penang Water Supply Corporation's CEO, K. Pathmanathan, assured reporters that the repair progress is on track.

Lee Teong Li from the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers in Penang disclosed that many members plan to close operations for the initial two days, anticipating a partial water supply resumption thereafter. The economic repercussions are significant, with potential losses running into millions of dollars, as businesses face revenue setbacks and continue paying workers during the shutdown.

Penang, relying heavily on manufacturing and tourism, hosts global electronic giants such as Intel, AMD, Hewlett Packard, Motorola, Clarion, and Flextronics.

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