KOTA KINABALU – Malaysia remain committed to implementing Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) in line with decisions reached during the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) 1992, Rio+20 Conference in 2012 and at the recent United Nations Sustainable Development Summit said Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar.
“We have held firmly to our commitment to maintain at least 50 percent of the country’s land area under forest and trees. The ability to maintain this commitment is attributed to our continuous implementation of SFM to ensure effective utilization, conservation and protection of forest resources.
“We have well-established Permanent Reserved Forest (PRF)/Permanent Forest Estates (PFE) and give priority to the concept of High Conservation Value Forests as well as the protection of critical ecosystem such as water catchment areas. In addition to the establishment of PRF, various networks of protected areas has also been established in order to secure biodiversity
protection,” he said when closing the International Conference on Heart of Borneo (HOB) here today.
His text of speech was read by the ministry’s deputy secretary-general Datuk Seri Dr Azimuddin Bahari.
Wan Junaidi said the Federal Government will continue to support Sabah and Sarawak in the implementation of the HOB Initiative.
He said in the 9th and 10th Malaysia Plan, the Federal Government had allocated about RM34.46 million to implement various projects and activities under the HOB Initiative and had further allocated RM75.07 million under the 11th Malaysia Development Plan.
“The successful implementation of all the activities under HOB also indicate the dedication and support of both state governments,” he said.
He also said the Government of Malaysia recognises the significance of HOB Initiatives, which is in tandem with the existing policies, plans and programmes pertaining to sustainable development, land use and conservation, at both the state and national levels.
“We view the HOB as an important initiative that will directly contribute towards the betterment of forest management and conservation,” he said.
The HOB Initiative is a transboundary effort between Brunei, Indonesia and Malaysia to enable conservation and sustainable development that improves the welfare of those living on the island while minimizing deforestation, forest degradation and the associated loss of biodiversity and ecosystem service. – BERNAMA