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Sabah targets to develop 400,000ha of forest plantations by 2036
Published on: Monday, July 25, 2022
By: Bernama
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Sabah targets to develop 400,000ha of forest plantations by 2036
Chief minister Datuk Hajiji Noor (second from left) listening to a briefing on the Laran type of forest seedlings during his visit to the Sapulut plantation nursery near Keningau today. (Bernama pic)
NABAWAN: Chief Minister Datuk Hajiji Noor has urged all the timber industry players in Sabah to transform this industry by applying the economic value chain (EVC) concept which integrates both the upstream and downstream sectors.

He said the upstream and downstream timber processing industry had been a stand-alone sector all this while, meaning that the upstream product could not fully match the downstream demand.

“With the EVC concept, the output lines will be integrated and raise productivity on a bigger scale,” he said in his speech during a working visit to Jawala Plantation Industries Sdn Bhd in Sapulut here today.

Hajiji said this was his first such visit to a Sustainable Forest Management Licence Agreement (SFMLA) concession area since becoming chief minister.

He said he wanted to see for himself the physical development under the Sabah Maju Jaya (SMJ) initiative in the forestry sector, that is the forest plantation transformation under the Forest Plantation Development Action Plan 2022-2036, launched last March 22.

He said through this action plan, the state government targeted to develop 400,000ha of forest plantations in the commercial forest reserve areas by 2036.

“This timber forest development strategy is aimed at reducing dependency of the downstream timber industry on the original forests as the source of raw material supply. It will also maintain the sector’s competitiveness in the future.

“Between six and eight million cubic metres of timber supply are expected to be produced through the harvesting of 40,000ha of forest plantations each year.

“This will ensure sufficient and sustainable supply of the raw material for the timber industry, with the potential of contributing about RM11.5 billion to Sabah’s gross domestic product (GDP).

“It will create 40,000 job opportunities and further expand the timber processing industry,” he added.

Hajiji said Sabah forestry department’s statistics showed that 165,198ha of forest plantations had been developed by the SFMLA concession holders at the commercial forest reserve areas.

“This shows a progress rate of 41.3% from the targeted 400,000ha under the Forest Plantation Development Action Plan,” he said.

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