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A number of factors are said to be presented to the government

FOLLOWING the renegotiations of some government projects deemed vital, submissions have been made to rescue the concession dubbed Sistem Kawalan Imigresen Nasional or SKIN.

In July 2017, a unit of Prestariang Bhd , Prestariang SKIN Sdn Bhd (PSkin), inked a 15-year concession agreement with the-then Barisan Nasional government to implement the RM3.5bil border protection project.

Last December, though, the same unit received a letter from the Home Ministry confirming the Cabinet’s decision to terminate the SKIN project by way of expropriation.

The contract’s termination took effect on Jan 22 this year.

But sources now say a number of factors are being presented to the government for it to consider reviving SKIN. These factors include a reduction in the total cost of the project, weakness in the existing immigration system, the long delay associated with a new tender process and a new ownership structure which would see a government-linked investment fund becoming the major owner of the project.

SKIN is a new core immigration system meant to replace the Immigration Department’s existing “MyIMMs” infrastructure. Built in the 1990s, MyIMMs is said to be a patchwork of different systems, which, in turn, has led to oft-reported instances of border control compromise and the inability of the government to carry out crucial threat assessments.

Another crucial part to the saga is the fact that the cancellation opens up the government to a compensation suit by PSkin, which could seek up to RM1bil in termination fees, say some.

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