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Sabah To Come Up With Policy On Oil Palm Biomass

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah government will introduce its own policy to regulate oil palm biomass, said Sabah Industrial Development and Entrepreneurship Minister Phoong Jin Zhe.

“The creation of the policy is important for the long-term development of Sabah’s biomass industry while also contributing towards a sustainable socio-economic growth of Sabah.

“This is especially true in terms of income generation, increased investment value and the creation of decent job opportunities,” said Phoong in a statement.

The announcement was made during the inaugural Malaysia Palm Oil Expo (Mapex) in Sandakan today.

The event showcased more than 40 international and domestic companies with the latest technology and research in the palm oil industry.

Phoong said in 2021, Sabah was in the position to generate approximately 45 million metric tonnes of oil palm biomass.

“These include empty palm bunches, mesocarp fibre, palm oil kernels, palm oil effluent, palm oil stems and palm fronds. This shows the immense potential of down-streaming the biomass industry in Sabah.

“Therefore, the Sabah government has principally agreed to establish our very own Biomass Policy to regulate the supply and downstream of the palm oil biomass industry.

“The Sabah Cabinet has also agreed to utilise POIC Lahad Datu as the platform to spearhead the implementation of this policy,” he said.

Based on data, Sabah is the largest palm oil-producing state in Malaysia, with a total planted area exceeding 1.5 million hectares which accounts for 27 per cent of Malaysia’s total palm oil plantation area of 5.7 million hectares.

Sabah is also the largest producer of Crude Palm Oil in the country, contributing approximately 4.36 million metric tonnes of the country’s 18.12 million metric tons of total Crude Palm Oil production in 2021.

Phoong also noted that Sabah is also the main producer of Palm Kernels, Crude Palm Kernel Oil and Palm Kernel Cake.

Therefore, Phoong stressed the importance of the Sabah government introducing its’ own policy to regulate biomass.

The main products that can be produced from oil palm biomass includes bio-pallet, bio-ethanol, bio-palm gas, bio-based chemicals, composite wood, and furniture.

He also called upon the major oil palm industry players to look into developing the downstream of the oil palm industry in Sabah.

He expressed that the Sabah government is ready to roll out policies and incentives to help create a friendly environment for the development of the industry.

Present were Tanjung Papat assemblyman Datuk Frankie Poon, Sandakan Member of Parliament Vivian Wong Shir Yee, State Assistant Minister of Housing and Local Government cum Sungai Sibuga assemblyman Datuk Mohamad Hamsan Awang Supain, Gum Gum assemblyman Arunarsin Taib, Sungai Manila assemblyman Mokran Ingkat, Elopura assemblyman Calvin Chong and NRG Exhibition Senior Manager Celine.

Source : NST