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Pilot rubberised road in Kadamaian soon
Published on: Wednesday, October 30, 2019
By: []

KOTA BELUD: State Rural Development Minister Datuk Ewon Benedick said the pilot project to build a 2km-rubberised road using bitumen-rubber technology in Kadamaian is currently in the information gathering process.

He said this is because road construction using such technology has never been implemented in Sabah and Sarawak before.

“That is why the State Public Works Department (PWD) needs to review the technical reports and detailed information based on projects carried out in the Peninsula by the Malaysian Rubber Board (LGM) and the Ministry of Works Malaysia (KKR) before implementing it in Sabah.

“The proposal to implement the pilot project has been agreed to in principle, but the State PWD needs detailed information from the LGM and KKR,” he said after  a ceremony to hand over monsoon season aid to Kota Belud rubber smallholders here, Friday.

State Agriculture and Food Minister Datuk Junz Wong officiated the event.

Ewon, who is also Kadamaian Assemblyman, said the Federal Government had allocated RM100 million for rubberised roads across Malaysia this year.

“However, it is only being implemented on federal roads in the Peninsula and Sabah PWD has its own views, so they have not yet to embrace this technology,” he said. 

“We visited the Kuala Lumpur LGM office recently to get more information. My visit with Junz was joined by Sabah PWD, State Economic Planning Unit (Upen), Sabah Rubber Industry Board (LIGS) and the Kota Belud District Office to discuss with LGM and MOH. 

“We have also been taken to look at highways paved with this technology as well as supply factories.”

He said the discussions were crucial to enable the State PWD to learn more about the technology before implementing the pilot project.

“As the assemblyman who proposed the construction of roads using rubber technology in Kadamaian, I will seek the Federal Government’s allocation. It may also involve changes to the proposed original site subject to PWD’s final decision.”

Ewon said if the pilot project is successful in Kadamaian, it will be the first rubber road in Sabah.

However, he said, since the project is implemented only on existing roads in the Peninsula, the pilot project’s location will likely change.

“I suggested a new location for the pilot project, but PWD thinks it’s better to implement it on existing paved roads that are damaged and need to be refurbished.

“In addition, we need to take into account technical and engineering considerations before proceeding with this proposal, but in principle, we have agreed to accept this proposal for implementation in the hope that we can create demand for natural raw materials and subsequently increase rubber prices,” he said.

Ewon said discussions on the proposal had already begun with various stakeholders since last year.

Meanwhile, Junz expressed his support for the proposal and hoped that the pilot project will be implemented in Sabah as it has already been carried out on 21 roads in the Peninsula.

“If that is the way we can stabilise the price of rubber in Sabah, then we will bring this to the Cabinet to serve as the basis for building some roads using rubber technology.

“LIGS is ready to supply natural rubber raw materials if this technology is to be developed in Sabah. We have been informed by the LGM that they are in talks with a local company which has expressed interest in building a bitumen supply plant with natural rubber for road construction,” he said.

At the ceremony, Junz also held a dialogue session on Sabah’s rubber industry which touched on prices, additional economic activities for rubber planters and other issues.

Some 5,123 rubber smallholders in Kota Belud were eligible to receive the aid.

LIGS Chairman Datuk John Ghani and Kota Belud District Officer Diyanah Abdullah were also present.



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