03 June 2011 (Friday) – The Forest Research Institute Malaysia’s (FRIM) Forest Products Division team, led by its director, Dr Mohd Nor Mohd Yusoff, visited the Sabah Timber Industry Association (STIA) and conducted a dialogue with the industry in Kota Kinabalu on 23 May 2011.
The dialogue held at the STIA office was attended by 40 representatives from the upstream and downstream industry, with some from as far as Sandakan and Tawau.
The institute’s eight-member delegation, comprising five Programme Heads under the division and two representatives from the Forest Plantation Programme, took the opportunity to present FRIM’s research, development and commercialization activities.
They received positive response from the attendees, fielding various questions ranging from concerns regarding supply of raw material, potential supply from forest plantations and Acasia mangium for product development. Among others, there were also requests for FRIM researchers to visit their factories to help resolve problems.
After the dialogue, the group visited the INnovatory Furniture Sdn Bhd, located at the Kota Kinabalu Industrial Park, which produces garden furniture using solely Acasia mangium. On the same day, the FRIM researchers departed for Sibu for a visit arranged by the Sarawak Timber Association (STA).
The following day, the group was received by the STA Group Managing Director/CEO Dato K.H. Wong at the TA ANN Holdings Berhad main office, where a discussion was held and FRIM was invited to collaborate with TA ANN in joint research projects on forest plantation, timber processing and product development.
The programme in Sibu concluded with a visit to TA ANN Timber Complex which houses facilities such as sawmill, plywood mill and moulding mill.
This trip was the first of its kind organised by FRIM in response to a request from members of the Task Force on Forest Products R&D during its last meeting in December 2010. The objective was to engage these stakeholders in discussions to better understand their concerns and local issues.