The Truth About Sarawak’s ‘Forest Cover’ – Why Shell Should Think Twice Before Engaging With The Timber Crooks

Looking for all the world like a gruesome bunch of mafia dons, the head honchos of Sarawak dressed casual this weekend and waddled out to some turf to grin for their favourite PR organ, the Borneo Post (owned by the timber barons of KTS) in order to proclaim their belated attempt to get onto the tree planting band-waggon.

The broad face of the mysteriously wealthy deputy chief minister, Awang Tengah dominated the shot (his earlier positions included chairman and director of the Sarawak Timber Industry Development Corporation and minister of Urban Development and Natural Resources). Meanwhile, his boss Abang Johari posed planting a symbolic sapling, described as a native plant but of a ‘fast growing’ kind.  So, what is this all about?

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Cronyism, Kickbacks and An Eco-Catastrophe – The Story Of Murum Dam

One of the Governor of Sarawak’s key political henchmen cum holders of public office made a rare foray into the headlines this week to attack the appointment of a new Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission (MACC) chief, who is expected to break the log jam on corruption cases.

Idris Buang, who has himself combined various public and private offices with political roles, complained that the appointee has been a known member of PKR and would, therefore, be biased.

Perhaps the assemblyman, who has been linked to a number of high profile controversies is fearful of more active investigations into the Sarawak scene?  For example, Sarawak Report has received details of one report to the MACC last year, which has yet to be acted on, relating to the clearing of timber worth a billion ringgit from the Murum Dam basin through a contract granted by Sarawak Energy (SEB) while he was on the board.

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SEDC Taken For A Ride Or What?

Doing the rounds on social media is a story that has been raising eyebrows in Sarawak.

The public investment vehicle that is supposed to be assisting development in the state, namely the Sarawak Economic Development Corporation (SEDC), has just poured a very substantial sum into the purchase of a cattle farm over in Darwin: way over the valuation and market price, according to Australian media outlets.

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Bolstering Sarawak’s trade outlook

KUCHING: Separated from major routes by land and sea, Sarawak has always been rather left out in terms of foreign investment and trade.

However, as shown time and time again in world history, open trade policies and initiatives are essential in building up strong economies in a region.

For Sarawak, our main exports have always been bolstered by timber, palm oil, and oil and gas industries.

These industries have been the backbone of our state since the olden days.Today, these commodities are hampered by their sustainability issues in the longer-term and negative perceptions in the global market.

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MA63 and the Federal Constitution

No sooner had the first constitutional amendment bill presented by the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government failed to secure the requisite two-thirds parliamentary majority last week, the recriminations and blame game started in earnest in Sarawak.

It was an initiative to restore the constitutional text to its earlier, pre-1976, form that was primarily instigated in Sarawak and Sabah — to put back the two Borneo states in a category all their own and separate from all the other states in the peninsula.

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Why no matric for students with good SPM results?

KUCHING: Malaysians want a proper explanation as to why many students who achieved good results and have applied for a place in matriculation did not get it.

Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii said he had relayed the complaints to the Ministry of Education, and its Deputy Minister Teo Nie Ching is meeting with the matriculation board to go through the whole process and to better understand the issue.

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Frequent U-turns make dealing with Putrajaya difficult, says Sarawak minister

KUCHING: A Sarawak minister said future dealings with the Pakatan Harapan government will “likely be difficult” due to its “continuous U-turns” on promises made.

State Education, Science and Technological Research Minister Michael Manyin said this followed Putrajaya’s decision to turn down the Sarawak government’s offer of a RM1 billion loan to repair dilapidated schools in the state.

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Sabah, Sarawak leaders should stay united over Malaysian agreement

Sabah Youth Council (MBS) has urged leaders of Sabah and Sarawak to stick together in the struggle over the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) apart from ensuring their stand was in the interest of the people and not solely for their political survival.

MBS Deputy President Abqaree Fawwaz Abekan said the failure to obtain the required support in Parliament to pass the Amendment on Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution Bill recently was very disappointing even though Sabah and Sarawak leaders still have the space to focus on restoring both states as equal partners with the Peninsula as contained in MA63.

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Sabahans and Sarawakians have differing views on Agreement

Sabahans and Sarawakians have differing views on the failed attempt to pass the amendment to Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution.

While folks in Sabah are disappointed, their neighbours in Sarawak felt the amendment was vague and would not do much to restore the state’s rights.

Sabahans feel passing the amendment would spell more funds and power which would have helped to uplift the state.

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Sarawak cuts log export quota to 20pc

Sarawak’s policy of gradual reduction of log export quota instead of a total ban to support local the timber processing industry is bearing fruit as industry players assured of State support. The Log Reservation Quota was introduced in 1988 to ensure adequate supply of logs for the local primary and secondary processing industry.In 1988, the export quota was 90 per cent with the local processing quota at 10 per cent.

By 2018, the export quota was reduced to 20 per cent while the local processing quota had increased to 80 per cent. This policy has been successful in spurring the growth of the primary and secondary timber processing industry, making Sarawak the largest producer and exporter of tropical plywood in the region.

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