Iskandar Development Berhad (IIB), the investment holding company of Iskandar Malaysia in South Johor, has opened the largest drone test site (DTS) in Southeast Asia. Located in Medini, the site covers an area of more than 1,700 acres in the Iskandar Drone and Robotic Zone (DRZ Iskandar), which is expected to bring in MYR 351 million (USD 83.84 million) worth of investments and create over 1,000 high-value jobs in drone and robotics by 2025 to support the realization of Johor State’s digital economy agenda.
During the opening ceremony, the state government through its Chief Minister Datuk Hasni Mohammad welcomed all drone technology players in Malaysia and the region to set up their businesses in DRZ Iskandar. He also shared that IIB has spent close to MYR 4 million (USD 960 000) since the inception of DRZ Iskandar in December 2020, with a sizeable budget allocated by the state government to develop the drone and robotic ecosystems in the area.
DRZ Iskandar aims to provide a safe and real environment for innovators to test, fly, learn and try out new ways for unmanned aircraft to be integrated into the skies. Medini’s DTS has two sites comprising DTS 1 measuring about 10 ha for “visual line of sight” flights and DTS 2 of 688ha for “beyond visual line of sight” flights, the first of its kind in Malaysia. Both sites are the main components of DRZ Iskandar for the National Technology and Innovation Sandbox (NTIS), with heightened regulations to act as a testbed for novice technology solutions to take off and fly, and are recognized by the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI).
(Sources: Iskandar Investment Berhad; The Malaysian Reserve)