Growth drivers have been identified in Labuan Development Blueprint 2030 (Labuan Blueprint) as the engine of Labuan's economy to keep Labuan's growth at the rapid rate as experienced in the previous years. The selected growth drivers are more diverse able to spur both economic development and inclusiveness. With Labuan's limited population and resources, the selected growth drivers are sectors that are able to export their products and services to consumers outside Labuan. Thus, their growth are not constrained by the size of domestic market, but the demand within the extended market and larger catchment. However, the success of these growth drivers must be supported by good enabling environment especially the connectivity to the immediate regional market.
Labuan is already on the right track with its function as a financial centre, duty free island and tourism destination. These functions are spelled-out in the Labuan Company Act 1990 and thus will continue to be the growth drivers for Labuan. Labuan also has become an oil and gas hub with its gas terminal, methanol plant and oil and gas supply base that support the neighbouring Sabah and to some extend Sarawak and Brunei Darussalam. Labuan has reaped the benefits of the growth of these economic drivers with its robust economy but the mission to move forward is to strengthen and diversify these existing economic drivers in order to stay resilient and not be vulnerable to global changes.
Under the Labuan Blueprint, the financial and oil & gas sectors in Labuan will be strengthened whilst education, tourism and public services, that already have foundations in Labuan but has yet to spur trickling effects, will be nurtured and stimulated to create further growth and strong enough to build their own linkages and clusters. As development is a dynamic process and the strength of the activities may shift with the change in the competitive advantage in the long run, some economic activities in Labuan can be nurtured in anticipation of the improvements in the required ecosystem. As such, Labuan Blueprint sees the potential of logistics and promotes this services as the long-term growth drivers. Logistic sector has the potential to grow when Labuan's port and airport have enough external connectivity to serve a wider region including Sabah and Sarawak. Future growth in logistics is undeniable as port and airport services are expected to grow leaps and bound due to the oil and gas industry, financial sector, tourism and education.
Several development strategies have been formulated to steer the growth of each growth driver after identifying the gaps and challenges faced by each growth driver.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.