PUTRAJAYA: Malaysia practises sustainable forest management on both production and protection of forests and promotes independent third party certification to ensure sustainability.
Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said Malaysia had also identified strategic areas for gazettement as permanent forests under the Central Forest Spine and the Heart of Borneo Initiatives.
Malaysia also hopes to enhance forest conservation and strengthen connectivity between forest types.
“Retaining land as forests has high opportunity cost, and there is always pressure from interested parties to convert forests to other land uses to generate long term economic activities. For this reason, Malaysia regards the international support for forests as vital and has implemented REDD+ to gain access to payments for result based actions,” he said at the 2nd Asia Pacific Forest Summit in Brunei Darussalam.
REDD+ stands for efforts to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, and foster conservation, sustainable management of forests, and enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing countries.
Malaysia had submitted its forests reference levels for sustainable management of forests and completed the technical assessment process.
Malaysia had kept its pledge made at Rio Earth Summit in 1992 to keep at least half of its land area under forest and green cover.
The ministry’s data for 2014, shows that Malaysia’s natural forest cover stands at 18.27 million hectares or 55.23 per cent of total land area. On the readiness to implement REDD+, Malaysia had implemented its national forest monitoring system and was in the advanced stages of preparing its Safeguards Information System (SIS) and National REDD+ Strategy. — Bernama