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GENTING HIGHLANDS, May 7 2024 โ€“ Dr. Hezri Adnan, the Director of Group Sustainability, Bursa Malaysia, imparted valuable insights during his keynote address on the first day of the Biodiversity Forum 2024.
The eagerly anticipated Biodiversity Forum 2024, organized by the Malaysian Palm Oil Green Conservation Foundation (MPOGCF), kicked off today at Resorts World Awana, Genting Highlands, Pahang.
The opening ceremony, graced by the esteemed presence of the Minister of Plantation and Commodities, Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani, marked the official commencement of the forum.
Before that, MPOGCF Chairman, Dato’ Haji Mad Zaidi Mohd Karli, delivered insightful opening remarks, setting the tone for engaging discussions throughout the day.
Also present during the opening ceremony were the Deputy Secretary General (Strategic Planning & Management) of Ministry of Plantation & Commodities, Datoโ€™ Abdul Hadi Omar; the Director General of Department of Wildlife and National Parks Peninsular Malaysia (PERHILITAN), Datoโ€™ Abdul Kadir Abu Hashim; the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research & Innovation) of Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris (UPSI), Prof. Dr. Suriani Abu Bakar and MPOGCF General Manager, Mr. Hairulazim Mahmud.
Earlier, the day began with a thought-provoking keynote address delivered by Dr. Ahmad Hezri Adnan, Director of Group Sustainability, Bursa Malaysia.
Dr. Ahmad Hezri emphasized the critical importance of private sector involvement and blended finance solutions in biodiversity conservation efforts.
He said, the conservation of biodiversity has long been a focus of public policy and it is widely recognized but mainly perceived as a cost to the government.
โ€œAlthough Malaysia is a biodiversity powerhouse, traditional international funding is becoming increasingly scarce, emphasizing the need for private sector involvement and blended finance solutions.
โ€œWith environmental, social and governance (ESG) funds reportedly totaling trillions of US dollars, an important question arises: how can these resources be effectively unlocked for biodiversity efforts?โ€ Dr. Hezri said.
The keynote address discusses strategic pathways for corporate and policy initiatives aimed at securing and enhancing funding for future biodiversity conservation.
The aim is to outline actionable opportunities where financial sustainability intersects with environmental stewardship to effect a shift towards a regenerative economy.
After the opening ceremony, the forum then delved into two enriching sessions. The first session, titled “Sustainability and Best Practicesโ€, featured speakers including Mr. Ahmad Shahdan Kasim, Conservation Manager at MPOGCF; Dr. Hasber Salim from Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM); Mr. Mohd Firdaus Ahmad Tarmizi from the Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) and Dr. Vijaya Subramaniam from the Malaysia Palm Oil Board (MPOB).
The second session, titled “Human-Wildlife Coexistenceโ€, brought together experts such as Dr. Nurzhafarina Othman from Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS); Mr. Khalis Afnan Abdul Rahman from the Earthworm Foundation; Mr. Jiblius Dausip from the Wildlife Rescue Unit (WRU) and Ms. Nurul Azura Mohd Naim from the Wildlife Conservation Division, PERHILITAN.
As the first day of the Biodiversity Forum 2024 drew to a close, more than 800 physical and online participants were left inspired and motivated to actively contribute towards preserving our country’s rich biodiversity and promoting sustainable practices in oil palm plantations for generations to come.
The forum will continue tomorrow, where Mr. Joseph Tek Choon Yee, Chief Executive of the Malaysian Palm Oil Association (MPOA), will deliver his keynote address followed by three more engaging sessions titled โ€œConservation Efforts by the Industryโ€, โ€œConservation Education & Awarenessโ€ and โ€œPolicy & Regulationsโ€.
As part of the forum’s side events, participants will have the opportunity to visit the National Elephant Conservation Centre (NECC) in Kuala Gandah, Pahang and the Malayan Tiger Conservation Centre (MTCC) in Lanchang, Pahang, as well as participate in fun activities such as tree planting and guided walks on May 9, 2024.
The inaugural event with the theme โ€œThe Other Malaysian: Living Together in Harmonyโ€ is hosted by MPOGCF in collaboration PERHILITAN and UPSI as strategic partners.