Malaysian minister calls for synergy with business for biodiversity conservation
As part of its preparations for hosting the Third ASEAN Conference on Biodiversity (ACB 2020), Malaysia organised a forum on biodiversity, drawing about 60 participants from the business sector, academe, and non-government organisations.
Led by DHI Water & Environment (M) Sdn. Bhd and supported by Malaysia’s Ministry of Water, Land, and Natural Resources (KATS), the day-long event, dubbed as Biodiversity Forum for the Business and Private Sector, aimed to engage members of the business and private sectors on issues related to biodiversity and ecosystem services.
Representatives of the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) were also in attendance.
In his keynote speech, Yang Berhomat Dato’ Dr. Xavier Jayakumar, Malaysia’s Minister of Water, Land, and Natural Resources, cited the important role of the business sector in mainstreaming biodiversity, which entails integrating conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity into the country’s planning and decision-making processes.
He said that while the business sector relies on the genes, species, and ecosystem services that biodiversity provides, its activities leave a huge footprint on the environment.
“The business and private sectors should not only be viewed as stakeholders but as partners for the conservation and protection of biodiversity and ecosystem services, especially in mega-diverse countries like Malaysia,” Jayakumar said.
In bringing transformative change, Jayakumar called for active engagement with sectors, like transportation, agriculture, energy, tourism, manufacturing, mining and infrastructure to ensure the successful implementation of biodiversity agenda at both national and global levels.
Inputs from the Biodiversity Forum will be presented at the ACB 2020 on March 16 to 20 March led by KATS and the ACB.
A forum report will likewise be submitted to the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, which will contribute to the development of the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework.
The ACB 2020, the biggest biodiversity event in the region this year, will bring together 500 representatives from ASEAN national government agencies, managers of ASEAN Heritage Parks and other protected areas, members of the business and private sector, media, and the academe, non-government organisations and individuals involved in the promotion of biodiversity conservation activities in the region, and partner countries and organisations of ACB, among others.