STIA’s President Extend The Timber Industry’s Appreciation To Hajiji On Log Export...

STIA’s President Extend The Timber Industry’s Appreciation To Hajiji On Log Export Ban


KOTA KINABALU, SABAH – Sabah Timber Industries Association (STIA) President Tan Peng Juan (Mr. PJ Tan) would like to extend the timber industry’s appreciation to YAB Chief Minister for his affirmation that Sabah’s log export ban will be maintained.

The decision to support Sabah based factories has come as a big relief to existing and new investors. Long term confidence in the further development of value adding processing in Sabah has been further strengthened by this announcement.

The decision will go far in maintaining job security for the approximately 24,000 employed in various sectors in the industry.

Mr. Tan stated that this eagerly awaited confirmation has come at a very important time for the industry.

Many initiatives being developed such as the STIMP (Sabah Timber Industry Masterplan) and SAFTIC (Sabah Forestry & Timber Industry Council) will now be able to be pushed forward.

With YAB CM setting the direction forward for the industry via maintaining the log export ban policy, industry now can settle down and focus on critical mid to long term plans for the state of Sabah.

With the finalization of the STIMP (Masterplan) in the coming weeks, SAFTIC (Timber Council) would then be able to work closely with the government on ensuring that the key hurdles hampering the industry can be systematically tackled.

The road forward will not be easy given that our Natural resources are diminishing and Sabah’s Tree plantation results have not been on target.

However, the confirmation by YAB Chief Minister, is the first and most important step forward.

Mr. Tan went on to elaborate that the approach towards Industrial tree plantations is one area that will see the biggest changes based on the CM’s decision.

Tan Peng Juan (Mr. PJ Tan)…

Being a expensive endeavor and taking up to 10 years to bear fruit, a policy decision that is consistent will ensure that investors have full confidence that their investment in the state is secured.

Current and new investors in a capital intensive sector such as Tree planting will also be able to plan ahead and ensure that their commercial targets matches the aspirations of the Government of the day.

The complex downstream ecosystem that depends on the plantation supply chain will definitely benefit from Government being steadfast in its policies.

What new product development, technology investment and overall additional job opportunities Sabah can expect from the Natural forest sector will be another area that will also be heavily dependent on the maintaining of the log export ban.

STIA has observed that investment have been delayed and in some instances withheld due to uncertainty on the new Government’s policies pertaining to log exports.

The change in government in 2020, resulting in uncertainty in government policies has delayed many investment decisions. Now that YAB CM has taken a stance on maintaining the log export ban, STIA believes that the right message is being shared with potential investors.

It is STIA’s wish to assist the Tropical Wood Processing industry, once deemed a sunset industry, in hope that it can be a flourishing sector again.

It cannot be denied that the Tropical log exports policy re-established in 1996 has not delivered the desired results to Sabah.

STIA realizes that issues faced by the Tree plantation and Natural forest sectors are long term challenges that need quite some time to resolve and all decisions must be studied carefully.

As such Mr. Tan hopes that CM and the relevant government agencies will assist in looking into certain supply chain issues (low hanging fruits) that can deliver some much needed short term supply solutions to the industry.

Re-activation of dormant forest concessions (FMUs) and red-tape issues holding back Plantation Rubberwood supply are two examples of what the industry can benefit from immediately without putting further burden on our existing resources.

It is STIA’s hope that due consideration will be given to these issues while the Government and Industry work hand in hand to map out the next step for the whole industry.

Mr. Tan hopes that the industry’s collaborative effort to kick start the STIMP and SAFTIC will be able to contribute to this challenging task.

With the recent affirmation on log exports, there is much to hope for the industry.