Sabah CM urges more public-private partnerships to protect state’s rainforests

KOTA KINABALU, April 17 (Bernama) — The Kuamut Rainforest Conservation Project (KRCP) could play a significant role in protecting Sabah’s biodiverse forests, says Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor.

Hajiji said that KRCP exemplifies how the public and private sectors can collaborate effectively and transparently, involving and empowering local communities from the beginning.

He therefore urged for more partnerships between the public and private sectors to protect the state’s biodiverse forests.

“I want us to build upon the achievements of KRCP to safeguard as much of our forests as possible, and to lead the world in high-impact, scientifically sound conservation efforts,” he said in a statement following a meeting with KRCP partners here Tuesday.

KRCP is  a public-private partnership between the Sabah Forestry Department, Yayasan Sabah and Permain Malaysia, a subsidiary of Permain Global.

Also present were Permain Malaysia chief executive officer Ivy Wong Abdullah, Yayasan Sabah director Datuk Ghulam Haidar Khan Bahadar and Sabah Forestry chief conservator Datuk Frederick Kugan. 

During the briefing, Permain Global chairman Stephen Ramsey highlighted that KRCP, which had its first Monitoring Report verified last month, demonstrates compliance with internationally recognised standards for Climate, Community and Biodiversity progress.

This milestone enables the conservation initiative, aimed at protecting and restoring 83,381 hectares of tropical rainforest in the Tongod and Kinabatangan districts, to generate its first tranche of Verified Carbon Units (VCU), he said.

Permain Global has provided investment for the project and has also engaged state authorities, as well as scientific and community partners such as the South East Asia Rainforest Research Partnership (SEARRP) and the community-focused organisation PACOS Trust.