Tuesday, April 13

Institute may receive more fund for research on oil palm industry

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Lulie (right) presents a souvenir to Dr Tan.

KUCHING: The Ministry of Primary Industries is considering increasing the amount of funding for Sarawak’s Tropical Peat Research Institute (Tropi), especially in the field of research involving the sustainability of oil palm industry.

Its secretary-general Dato Dr Tan Yew Chong said this would help the oil palm industry, which contributed much to the nation’s economy.

“We will help in the research aspect, and be involved with research activities and  conferences,” he said when met after attending a briefing with Tropi director Dr Lulie Melling at their laboratory complex in Kota Samarahan yesterday.

He said the institute needed RM3 million annually for research, and that the ministry would continue to grant them RM1 million each year.

However, he said the ministry would have to take a closer look into the matter, while the institute had to produce more complete documentation in order to reach a solution together.

Meanwhile, Dr Lulie said apart from the grant, Tropi also received RM5 million from the chief minister for use during the next two years.

“The amount of grant to be given depends on project and capacity. Who is willing to work 15-18 hours a day. Researches need people who are really interested and keen in the job,” she said.