KOTA KINABALU: State Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun has applauded the continuous collaboration between Yayasan Sabah and Danish-based NEPCon for the management of the Maliau Basin Conservation Area (MBCA) for the next 10 years.
"Such collaborations between two countries are most welcome, especially between developed countries and developing countries, like Malaysia.
"It is in the world's interests that we cooperate in preserving rainforests and our natural environment."
Masidi was speaking at the signing of a memorandum of understanding between Yayasan Sabah and NEPCon, which is a non-profit organisation in Denmark, on the revision of the MBCA Management Plan 2014 to 2023, here.
He said NEPCon, on behalf of the Danish government, had undertaken the responsibility of collaborating with the state in the preparation of the management plan 10 years ago.
"This time, they took their own initiative, in support of Yayasan Sabah, to raise funding to review the MBCA management plan, which expired last year.
"I encourage more people from Scandinavian countries to collaborate with the government in the environmental fields of strategic projects that not only influence the state, but the global community, too."
NEPCon was approached for assistance when the MBCA Strategic Management Plan 2003 expired last year.
The latter then secured funding of about RM1.17 million from Aage V. Jansen Foundation in Denmark for the purpose.
Masidi also thanked Ikea, a Swedish organisation involved in environmental projects, for being one of Yayasan Sabah's biggest sponsors for its conservation programmes in the MBCA.
The programmes, which include forest restoration and rehabilitation, were initiated through Ikea in 1998.
"Despite having no stores in the state, Ikea has been in the state for the last 10 years through efforts to conserve pristine areas, as well as forest rehabilitation.
"Malaysia, in general, and Sabah, in particular, is appreciative of the crucial contributions that the Scandinavian countries -- Denmark and Sweden -- have given to the state." Bernama