The state of Sarawak in Malaysia is in the process of procuring assets and recruiting personnel for the upcoming Sarawak Coast Guard (SCG). In 2019, the Chief Minister of the state, Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg announced that the state government would establish its own coastal area enforcement unit, the Sarawak Coastal Guard. He added that the government would allocate MYR 90 million (USD 21 million) in the 2020 budget for the procurement of three patrol boats and recruitment of 50 personnel.
The SCG is going to be based on the coast guard model from Western Australia and Northern Territory in Australia. The objective of SCG’s establishment is to address security and defense issues in Sarawak’s coastal region including encroachment of foreign and local fishing vessels as well as the loss of revenues from its sea resources. The SCG will concentrate on waters around 12 nautical miles (territorial waters) and up to 24 nautical miles (contiguous zone).
SCG will be part of the State Security and Enforcement Unit (UKPN), which is tasked to manage the overall state’s security and defense program by collaborating with several agencies such as the Community Emergency Response Team and the Immune Belt Enforcement Team (IBET). The Sarawak Coastal Guard will also complement the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (APMM) and Marine Police for the coastline protection duties.
(Sources: New Straits Times; New Sarawak Tribune)