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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Sabah's seaweed industry to be High-Impact Project

SEMPORNA, June 28 (Bernama) - The seaweed industry is to be made a high-impact project in Sabah in a government move to augment the income of fishermen and raise their living standard, said Federal Agriculture and Agro-Based Industry Minister Datuk Noh Omar.

He said 102,000 hectares had been identified in Semporna, Lahad Datu, Kudat and Sandakan for the project which would be implemented soon and have initially 220 participants.

"We see a good market for seaweed in the country. The price is good and the demand exceeds supply," he told reporters after a dialogue with members of fishermen's associations in Lahad Datu, Semporna, Kunak and Tawau, here yesterday.

Noh said the project would be implemented by the Fisheries Department and the Fisheries Development Authority of Malaysia (LKIM) with the collaboration of the Sabah government which would provide the land.

On the request by existing seaweed processing entrepreneurs for the subsidised diesel and petrol now enjoyed by fishermen, he said it could be arranged as seaweed was also a marine resource.

Abdullah Urges Sabah To Set Up Body For Seaweed

SEMPORNA, July 24 (Bernama) - Former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has suggested that Sabah set up a research and development (R&D) institute specially to study the seaweed.

He said that with such a facility the potential of the seaweed in terms of production and processing of the end products could be expanded.

There should be R&D and a research body to focus on ways to improve the quality of the seaweed and to come up with more products, he said.

"We need to have all the skills so as to augment the incomes of the people involved in the seaweed industry," he told reporters after visiting the seaweed culture centre in Look Butun, Pulau Bum-Bum near here on Thursday.

He was accompanied by his wife, Tun Jeane Abdullah, Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman and Minister in the Chief Minister's Department Datuk Nasir Tun Sakaran on the visit to the project under the Sabah Rural Development Ministry.

Abdullah said the potential of seaweed in Sabah was bright in view of the high demand and the wide use of seaweed in food, drugs and pharmaceautical products.

He said seaweed culture did not need food or fertiliser and the people were lucky that Sabah, especially the waters of Semporna, Kunak and Lahad Datu, was suitable for seaweed culture.

The seaweed culture project in Look Butun, which had lifted about 80 participants above the poverty line, clearly showed that it was effective in overcoming hardcore poor problem, he said.

The project was started in 2001 and now each participant earns between RM1,000 and RM1,300 a month, depending on the price fo the seaweed.

Making Sabah seaweed match Filipino quality

Papar, July 03 (Daily Express) - A total of RM350,000 has been channelled to Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) this year to carry out research and development on improving seaweed cultivation in Sabah.

Malaysian Fisheries Development Authority (LKIM) Chairman Datuk Abdul Rahim Ismail said the funding was necessary for researchers to look for the best approach and type of technology that could increase seaweed production in the State.

"Presently the production of seaweed in Sabah is very low and its quality poor and we are uncertain about the reasons for such discouraging yields.

"In fact, our nation through Sabah only produces two per cent of the export figure," he said, adding that the Philippines is the major producer of seaweed.

Rahim was speaking after after presenting cheques for almost RM53,000 to 320 secondary students from 11 schools here at a multipurpose hall on Thursday.

He said there was a need for the transfer of technology on seaweed cultivation to enable seaweed planters and fishermen to enjoy high yields.

"If such funding is insufficient, then we will continue to provide additional funding to UMS for the same purpose next year," he said, adding that the current price of seaweed in Sabah is RM7 per kg but in Semporna, the price is less than RM2 per kg.

At the function earlier, Rahim, who is also Umno Papar Divisional Chief, reminded the 320 recipients of the Sabah Foundation scholarships not to spend the money on unnecessary things.

Instead, he said, the students should make full use of the scholarship fund to better their education through the purchase of reference books and other education materials.

Rahim said the recipients must appreciate the government assistance and work hard to excel in their studies.

The annual scholarships are given to those recommended by their principals particularly those from poor and hardcore poor families.

Of the number, 161 students were new recipients while the rest were those continuing to get scholarships through Form 1 to Form Six here.

Head of Administration for the Sabah Foundation Group's South Interior Zone, Zulkhairi Haji Ismail had earlier handed over a mock cheque for the total scholarship to Rahim.

Zulkhairi said the zone covering Papar, Kuala Penyu, Beaufort, and Sipitang involves about 600 scholarship recipients.

Also present were Local Government and Housing Assistant Minister Datuk Ghulam Haidar Khan Bahadar and Papar Education Officer Abidin Marjan.

Tun Sakaran Marine Park

The Tun Sakaran Marine Park encompasses eight islands and is the largest marine park in Sabah . It is only marine protected area in Sabah to include private land and to cater for various types of resource use not permitted in other marine parks.

Special provisions were included in the Gazette Notice to ensure that people’s rights were guaranteed. These are as follows:

1. All registered grants or titles in all the islands shall be retained and shall not be acquired by the Government.

2. The native customary rights which exists in all islands involved is recognised and shall not be disturbed. The claimant of the native customary rights may apply for the land in accordance to section 15 and 16 of the Land Ordinance.

3. All existing graveyards areas in all islands shall be retained as Muslim graveyard and shall not be affected by this declaration. The Government shall provide an estimated allocation to fence and maintain the existing graveyard in all islands.

4. One representative of heir from each island involved shall be appointed as Trustee of Tun Sakaran Marine Park.

5. Every development made in any islands shall involve the title owner or any legally identified claimant of native customary rights in the island and the development made will not cause their land to be acquired, and

6. Any form of development made either by an individual or joint venture with a developer shall be referred to Sabah Parks for comment and approval so that it is in accordance to the tourism concept of Sabah Parks.

The management aims for the Park are to:

1. protect the environment

2. safeguard livelihoods

3. promote sustainable use of natural resources

4. encourage environmentally-sensitive development
build public awareness about the importance of the Park

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