Pengerang, Johor, 6 Feb 2024 – Southern Reef commemorates a significant milestone with the celebration of the 1st anniversary and grand relaunch of Tanjung Belungkor Ferry Terminal (TBFT), signifying a transformative journey under its stewardship.
The relaunch of Tg Belungkor Ferry Terminal was marked by a ribbon-cutting ceremony, officiated and performed collectively by a distinguished group of leaders. Leading the ceremony were YB Mr. Raven Kumar Krishnasamy, Chairman of Johor Tourism, Environment, Heritage, and Culture Committee, and YB Mr. Mohd Hairi bin Mad Shah, Chairman of Youth, Sports, Entrepreneur Development, Cooperatives, and Human Resources Committee. Also joining the momentous occasion were Tuan Yang Terutama Bapak Sigit Suryantoro Widiyanto, Consul-General of the Republic of Indonesia in Johor, Col. Mohd Jamal Salleh, Managing Director of Southern Reef, Tuan Hj. Dickson Bin Dollah, Director of Malaysia Marine Department, Southern Region, and also Tuan Haji Rosnan Fathlal, Chairman of Johor Port Authority.
After the ribbon-cutting ceremony, a special ritual unfolded – the cutting of ‘pulut kuning’ to commemorate the first anniversary celebration of Southern Reef’s adept management and operation of Tg Belungkor Ferry Terminal. Each of the five distinguished VIPs played a crucial role in this symbolic act, signifying their collective commitment to the success and prosperity of this significant maritime endeavor.
Over the past year, Southern Reef, the new concessionaire of Tanjung Belungkor Ferry Terminal, has meticulously overseen extensive repairs, refurbishments, and enhancements. This dedicated effort has not only breathed new life into the terminal but has also revitalized a crucial maritime hub that faced the threat of prolonged closure due to the challenges posed by the pandemic.
As the pandemic cast its shadows, Tanjung Belungkor Ferry Terminal stood dormant for several years, with its operations temporarily ceased. Southern Reef stepped in as the new steward, facing the daunting task of resurrecting a facility that had weathered the storm of unprecedented times. Undertaking repairs, refurbishments, maintenance, and enhancements, Southern Reef spared no effort in meticulously restoring and elevating the terminal.
This revitalization is not just about reopening a ferry terminal; it’s a testament to Southern Reef’s dedication to the resilience and vibrancy of maritime connectivity. The terminal, once silent and still, now echoes with the promise of renewed journeys, trade connections, and the hum of bustling maritime activities. Southern Reef’s commitment extends beyond operational excellence; it’s a commitment to the revival of a vital gateway, poised to reconnect regions and reignite economic activities in the post-pandemic landscape.
Col Mohd Jamal Salleh, Managing Director of Southern Reef, expressed pride in the company’s achievements, stating, “Our journey at Tanjung Belungkor Ferry Terminal has been a testament to resilience and dedication. The ISPS accreditation solidifies our commitment to ensuring the highest standards of security, and we are proud to contribute to the maritime landscape of Johor.”
TBFT now stands as a multifaceted hub, offering essential bunkering services and pioneering innovative local tourism initiatives. The strategic move positions the terminal to provide ferry operations to Batam in Indonesia, and Singapore in the near future.
Col Mohd Jamal Salleh envisions TBFT as more than a transit point, stating, “Our vision is to not only connect destinations but to create experiences. We are focused on making Tanjung Belungkor Ferry Terminal a vibrant maritime hub that caters to diverse needs—be it business, tourism, or trade.”
Strategically located just 30 minutes from Desaru, TBFT aims to become a catalyst in boosting regional tourism. The ferry services are designed to offer a convenient and enjoyable travel experience, attracting tourists from Batam and Singapore to explore the vibrant offerings of Desaru.
Moreover, TBFT facilitates the commuting of the workforce coming into Pengerang and Desaru for employment. The efficient ferry services not only connect regions but also contribute to the ease of travel for those working in Pengerang and Desaru.
Col Mohd Jamal Salleh emphasizes, “Our terminal is not just a gateway; it’s an opportunity. We envision TBFT as a key player in not only enhancing tourism but also in supporting the workforce commuting to Pengerang and Desaru for employment.”
The advantage for travelers choosing TBFT is evident in the swift journey it offers. A ferry ride to Batam takes only one hour, providing a time-efficient option compared to other ferry terminals. This, coupled with the strategic location and enhanced facilities, positions TBFT as the preferred choice for maritime travel in the region.
Looking ahead, Southern Reef envisions TBFT as a key player in optimizing trade and supply chains. The introduction of Roll-on/Roll-off (RoRo) services, set to be launched soon, will offer a seamless transportation solution for vehicles transiting between Indonesia and the terminal.
Col Mohd Jamal Salleh highlights, “Our strategic focus on RoRo services is a step towards bolstering regional ties and fostering collaboration. We are not merely facilitating trade; we are creating bridges that connect economies.”
As Southern Reef celebrates the successes of the past year, it eagerly anticipates the future of TBFT. The grand relaunch serves as a prelude to a comprehensive range of services that will be rolled out in the coming months, including ferry operations, vessel layup, ship services, cargo and trading, and RoRo services.
Colonel Mohd Jamal Salleh, a stalwart in the tourism industry, shares a compelling vision for TBFT. Beyond its revival, he aims to propel TBFT to international acclaim, envisioning it as a dynamic hub seamlessly connecting Malaysia, Indonesia, and Singapore. More than a terminal, Colonel Jamal sees TBFT as a magnet for tourists, inviting them to explore Desaru’s scenic wonders, while also playing a pivotal role in optimizing regional supply chains. His vision underscores a commitment to operational excellence, positioning TBFT as a symbol of maritime prowess, tourism appeal, and economic connectivity. Under Colonel Jamal’s leadership, TBFT emerges not just as a transit point but as a story of growth, achievement, and the pursuit of international maritime distinction.
Colonel Mohd Jamal Salleh envisions TBFT as a transformative gateway, not just a ferry terminal but the key to elevating Desaru to international holiday destination status. Serving as a catalyst, he sees Desaru becoming synonymous with world-class leisure and tourism. The terminal acts as the bridge connecting tourists from Indonesia and Singapore to the pristine beaches and attractions of Desaru. Colonel Jamal’s commitment extends beyond operational efficiency; it’s about positioning Desaru on the global tourism map, drawing visitors with its scenic beauty, luxury resorts, and vibrant cultural experiences. TBFT, under his leadership, emerges as more than a transit point; it’s a beacon inviting travelers to explore the enchanting wonders of Desaru, setting a new standard for holiday destinations.
Colonel Jamal expresses his mission succinctly: “Our commitment transcends the mere revival; it’s about elevating TBFT to international standards. We envision a terminal that serves as a pivotal link, magnet for tourists, and a key player in optimizing supply chains.” This quote encapsulates his determination to shape TBFT into a globally recognized maritime facility.
As part of Southern Reef’s strategic initiatives, the company is actively pursuing collaborations with various ferry operators. The objective is to introduce ferry services connecting Tanjung Belungkor with Batam and Singapore, creating essential transportation links that will not only benefit the local workforce in Pengerang but also significantly contribute to the thriving tourism industry in Johor. Furthermore, Southern Reef is in ongoing discussions with counterparts at Pelabuhan Bintang 99 in Batam, with the aim of initiating barter trade and Roll-on/Roll-off (RoRo) activities. Beyond conventional trade agreements, these strategic moves are set to strengthen regional ties and foster collaboration for sustained growth.
In the vibrant world of Johor’s maritime scene, Southern Reef is ushering in a new era for Tanjung Belungkor Ferry Terminal. With a clear goal to lift the terminal to global standards, Southern Reef is on a journey to create an experience that combines efficiency, comfort, and experience.
Colonel Mohd Jamal Salleh addresses industry players and maritime experience seekers alike, saying, ‘Our terminal is more than a gateway; it’s an opportunity for industry players to leverage our RoRo and shipping services. To tourists, join us on this exciting journey as we redefine maritime travel in Johor
and beyond. Let Southern Reef and Tanjung Belungkor Ferry Terminal be your passport to new maritime experience and unparalleled connectivity.’