In May 2019 Free Malaysia Today reported that the Kedah government had earmarked 600 hectares of oil palm estate in the county of Sidam Kiri for a new airport called Kulim International Airport. Sidam Kiri is in the Kuala Muda District in the state of Kedah. Sungai Petani is the largest town in Kedah. A Sungai Petani Municipal Council spokesman confirmed that the airport would be built in Sidam Kiri although the exact site had yet to be determined. Sidam Kiri is largely composed of oil palm plantations, paddi (rice) fields and villages, surrounded by low rolling hills. There are many cottage industries such as wood carving and basket weaving. Cultural facilities include a Siamese Buddhist temple and shaman shacks. It was reported that news of the airport project met with support from local people who expressed hope it would bring more jobs and business for them. A farmer fully supported the project and said that locals should be given the chance to participate in the side projects arising from construction of the airport. He said “I hope the state government will talk to us and hear us out on what we think”. An assemblyman said the airport could bring an economic boom to Sidam Kiri and surrounding towns and that Kedah Menteri Besar (Chieaf Minister) Mukhriz Mahathir was in talks with local growers to prepare for international export of their crops via the new airport. At the state assembly the previous month Mukhriz said the airport had been included in the draft Kuala Muda District Local Plan (Replacement) 2035 which had been on display for public feedback since 1st April. The Kedah government appointed KXP AirportCity Holdings (KAHSB) to manage and coordinate construction on Kulim Airport .