Author: Bryant Wong, Teddy Sius & Anastasha Arlene Junigo; Published Date: 1st April 2022

“Very nice place you have here. I do have enough experience in seedlings and nurseries and they look good. Thank you for the hospitality here. Like the clubhouse. Very comfortable.”

These were the compliments from Prof. Dr. Zakiah during her brief visit and single-night stay at Sapulut camp from the 16th to 17th of March 2022.

Prof. Dr. Zakiah is from the Faculty of Civil Engineering of UiTM Shah Alam, whose expertise is in wood engineering. One of the purposes of her visit was to gain a better understanding of Laran tree plantations beginning from the nursery until the planting stage in the field. This concerns the current collaboration project between Sapulut and UITM to develop potential Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) from forest plantation timber and Prof. Dr. Zakiah’s intention to compile a report on the importance of forest plantations.

During her time in the Sapulut camp, she visited the nursery to observe Laran and E.pellita germination, including some of the research trials being conducted by the Sapulut R&D and Nursery team. Her visit also extended to the field to see the Laran and E.pellita plantations at compartment 197 and at the trial plots.

We also got the opportunity to share information about timber and the potential for timber to be an impactful part of the economy.

We were amazed by her determination in wood engineering as a lady because men dominate mostly wood engineering. The program was an enriching information exchange between the Sapulut team and Prof.Zakiah. As quoted by Anastasha, who was one of the Sapulut team present during the visit,

“It made me aware of how our country/government severely untapped the forestry sector because of how underutilized our resources are. The forestry sector is often associated with negative impacts like deforestation when actually if given more opportunities to expand, especially downstream, it could contribute largely to our national GDP”.

We hope that these visits will further advance the development of timber planting in Sabah.

courtesy visit