Sarawak offers many ecotourism attractions — DCM

Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan

KUCHING: Sarawak offers many attractions and comparative advantages for investors, as well as for ecotourism, says Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan.

In his opening keynote address before the World Islamic Economic Forum 2017 (WIEF 2017) panel discussion on Investment Opportunity in Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE), Awang Tengah said Sarawak has a lot of ecotourism products to offer.

“These include as the UNESCO World Heritage Gunung Mulu National Park, Bako National Park, Semenggoh Wildlife Centre and our cultural attractions, as well as the famous Rainforest World Music Festival.

“Sarawak is also rich in biodiversity, with flora and fauna that holds great potentials for the pharmaceutical and medicinal industry. The state is actively looking into these potentials and would like to invite investors to collaborate with the state in research and development (R&D) and the commercialisation of our biodiversity resources,” he added.

On the same note, Awang Tengah, who is also the Second Minister of Urban Development and Natural Resources and Minister of Industrial and Entrepreneur Development, highlighted that the state government places great emphasis on the sustainability of its timber resource.

“The Sarawak government has also encouraged the establishment of industrial trees with fast growing species such as acacia, in order to sustain the timber resources and relieve the pressure from natural forest. One million hectares of land are being earmarked for industrial trees. Currently more than 400,000 hectares have been planted.

“There are plenty of opportunities for wood-based industries such as pulp and paper, and furniture,” he said.

Sarawak has planted 1.5 million hectares of oil palm against the target of two million hectares by 2020, the minister said, and thus the state welcomes investment in the downstream oleochemicals production. With large potential biomass supply estimated at 19 million dry tones, Awang Tengah said Sarawak aims to be Asia’s First Integrated Biomass Hub.

“The biomass supply is available at competitive cost and concentrated in four main clusters, namely oil palm plantations, timber and rubber plantations, CPO mills and wood products,” he added.

“The state government has always been investor-friendly and we have all the legal frameworks in place to ensure the interest of investors are protected. Now, the state government is embarking on digital economy to leapfrog the state into high income economy by 2030,” he said.

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