Malaysia Takes Steps To Reduce Timber Industry’s Dependence On Natural Forests.
Malaysia has taken steps to supplement supply of raw materials to the timber industry and reduce the industry’s dependence on natural forests.
This was in view of the requirement to set limits to logging in order to maintain sustainability of the forests, Deputy Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Hamzah Zainudin said Wednesday.
“My ministry has embarked on a forest plantation programme under which 25,000 hectares would be established annually over a period of 15 years to achieve a target of 375,000 hectares.
“In addition, the timber industry is also looking into developing alternative sources of raw materials such as bio-composite materials from oil palm fibre and other agro-based fibres,” he said at the Workshop on Malaysia and Indonesia Timber Trade and Adaption of Forest Governance Integrity Tools here today.
He said although the Malaysian timber policy seemed to be focusing much on efforts to enhance its trade performance, the issue of sustainable development was also of paramount importance to the country.
In fact, he said, Malaysia had over 100 years experience of managing its natural forest resources and through this focus, more than 50 per cent of the total land area was still under forest cover.
Today’s workshop is aimed at promoting understanding and efforts in enhancing legal sourcing and trade in timber between Malaysia and Indonesia, based on Customs Departments’ control mechanisms.