KUALA LUMPUR, 25 September 2019 – In conjunction with its 20th Anniversary themed “Pushing Boundaries Advancing Sustainability”, the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) presented the MTCC SustainabilityAwards to recognise and celebrate the hard work and commitment undertaken by forest managers and timber enterprises in meeting the stringent demand of forest management and chain of custody certification under the Malaysian TimberCertification Scheme (MTCS – a national timber certification scheme for sustainability of forests developed and operated by the MTCC).
The MTCC Sustainability Awards recognised certified organisations with exemplary leadership and had carried out inspirational initiatives in sustainability through the creation and implementation of procedures, plans, projects or initiatives that took into consideration the various aspects of sustainability.
The award categories were:
Social Sustainability and Empowerment
Product Innovation and Diversification
Biodiversity and Ecosystem Protection
Leadership in Sustainability
The judging was done by a five-member panel comprising representatives from environmental, social and economic interest groups and research institution. The winners were:
1. Social Sustainability and Empowerment
– Ulu Sg Milian & Sapulut FMU
managed by Bornion Timber Sdn. Bhd.
2. Product Innovation and Diversification
– One-Tech (M) Sdn. Bhd.
3. Biodiversity and Ecosystem Protection
– Anap Muput FMU managed by Zedtee Sdn.
4. Leadership in Sustainability – Segaliud Lokan FMU managed by KTS
Plantation Sdn. Bhd.
Each winner was presented with a certificate and a special trophy by the Minister of Primary Industries YB Puan Teresa Kok at the MTCC 20th Anniversary Dinner held at Sunway Putra Hotel here yesterday. About 300 guests mainly timber and forest industry players attended the event which also included the launch of MTCC’s commemorative book titled “Twenty Years – Pushing Boundaries Advancing Sustainability.”
WINNER’S TROPHY – AN MTCC-ROYAL SELANGOR COLLABORATION
The chic-looking trophy for the MTCC Sustainability Awards was a collaborative effort between MTCC and Royal Selangor International Sdn. Bhd. Royal Selangor, an iconic Malaysian brand of the finest pewter products, was the first non-wood based product manufacturing company to obtain the MTCS Chain of Custody Certificate in 2017. Its wood-based pewter wares carry the MTCS/PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) label, signifying that the wood components are 100% sourced from certified forests in Malaysia.
The trophy for the grand award category, Leadership in Sustainability, was sponsored by Royal Selangor.
KUALA LUMPUR, 24 September 2019 – The Malaysian Timber Certification Council(MTCC), an organisation tasked to implement the Malaysian Timber CertificationScheme (MTCS), organises a conference on timber certification at Sunway PutraHotel here today as part of the programme line-ups for its 20th Anniversary celebration. The conference is organised in collaboration with the Institute for Environment and Development(LESTARI), Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.
Themed “Pushing Boundaries Advancing Sustainability”, the one-day conference is aimed at recapping 20 years of development and progress of timber certification in Malaysia as well as envisioning the future of certification beyond 2030. The conference is also positioned as a platform for industry players to discuss how the certification scheme and processes could capitalise on the digital economy to remain credible, effective and efficient.
In her keynote speech, YB Puan Teresa Kok says timber has been a traditional source of revenue and foreign income for Malaysia for decades. However, sustainably managing the forests and timber industry is not an easy task taking into account Malaysia’s rich biodiversity, complex tropical forest ecosystems as well as the presence of indigenous communities.
“When MTCC first started, many stakeholders viewed certification with concern, scepticism and uncertainty. Reflecting on MTCC’s efforts and achievements combined with the input and cooperation from forest managers, industry players and the relevant stakeholders, timber certification has indeed come a long way. It was therefore a real achievement when the MTCS was endorsed by the world’s largest forest certification scheme, the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification(PEFC) in May 2009. The endorsement by the PEFC confirms the robustness and credibility of the MTCS in meeting international requirements and standards. Asa PEFC-endorsed scheme, the MTCS also gains international recognition and acceptance,” she says.
In 2018, the annual export of PFC-endorsed MTCS-certified timber products have increased tremendously to348,802 cubic metres, comprising a wider range of products including sawn timber, plywood, mouldings, doors, builders’ carpentry and joinery, furniture and furniture parts, finger-jointed timber, as well as veneer and flooring.
“Apart from these traditional timber products, other products such as paper and wood pellets and briquettes have also been certified, signalling that the industry is getting more innovative and the market for certified products is expanding. To date, the MTCS-certified timber and timber products have been shipped to 66 destinations across the globe,” she adds.
Since the MTCS started operations in2001, the Minister is happy to note that as at 31 August 2019, theMTCS-certified forest areas spanning 4.2 million hectares of natural forests and 109,025 hectares of forest plantation. The number of chain of custody-certified timber companies has also increased to 366.
“Twenty seven years after the Earth Summit in 1992, only a total of 495 million hectares or 12% of the world’s forests have been certified for sustainable forest management, inclusive of 44million hectares or 8.8% from tropical forests. It is therefore heartening for me to note that about 10% of the total tropical forests certified in the world is contributed by MTCS,” she says, and regards MTCC’s achievement as highly commendable given the difficult situation in the market when it started its operation in 1999.
Earlier in his welcoming remarks, MTCC Chairman Datuk K. Yogeesvaran says the idea for third-party forest certification was mooted after the Earth Summit in 1992 as one of the ways to address concerns on deforestation and forest degradation particularly in tropical forests. It eventually resulted in the development of two international forest certification schemes and many national schemes including the MTCS. Datuk Yogeesvaranalso announced the new MTCC’s Vision and Mission at the event.
About the conference
The MTCC 20th AnniversaryConference features industry dialogues on certification as a driver for disruptive innovations and the future of certification in a digital economy and beyond 2030.
In the first session, Timothy Pan of Bornion Timber talks about the influence of forest certification in a holistic management, while Harith Ridzuan, who is known as ‘The Green Carpenter’ talks about buying into the circular economy. Adela Askandar of Studio/Kedai Bikin speaks on the trend and demand for green products, followed by Dr. Antonio Brunori, the Secretary General of PEFC Italy, who presents a topic on “Making sustainability fashionable: Promoting product innovation through certification.”
The second session features a panel of experts from the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification, Forestry Department Peninsular Malaysia, SIRIM QAS International Sdn Bhd, Malaysian Timber Council, Forest Research Institute Malaysia and WildlifeConservation Society discussing the future outlook for certification and sustainability in the forest and timber industry beyond 2030.
The conference is attended by 200 participants from here as well as Singapore and Indonesia. It will be followed by an Anniversary Dinner and the MTCC Sustainability Awards ceremony later in the evening.
In 2018, the timber industry garnered 1.6% to the Gross Domestic Product and the export value of timber products recorded a 4.0% decline of RM22.29 bilion, compared to RM23.22 billion in 2017. (Source: The Malaysian Timber Industry Board)
The first shipment of 732 cubic metres of MTCS-certified sawn timber was exported to the Netherlands on July 16, 2002.
The revised Vision and Mission statements, reflecting MTCC’s commitment to take sustainability to the next level are as below:
The Vision: A nation that appreciates and internalises the full value and contribution of forest towards global sustainability.
The Mission: MTCC is committed to strengthen the MTCS to realise the full value and contribution of forest through sustainable forest management and chain of custody certification.
“Necessity is the mother of invention.” Arising from the Earth Summit in 1992, the idea for third-party forest certification to promote the implementation of sustainable forest management to tackle the issues of deforestation and forest degradation was mooted. Consequently, forest certification schemes, both international and national were developed, including the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme(MTCS) operated by the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC).
MTCC began operations in 1999 with a specific mandate to promote the implementation of sustainable forest management and to meet the demand for sustainably produced timber products in the international market. In the past two decades through the implementation of the MTCS, the MTCC has disrupted the status quo in forest management practices and supply of timber products in the country.
Twenty years on, has timber certification been able to address the global concern and fulfill the needs of the increasing demand for sustainable timber products? Has certification become a new normal or will it be deemed irrelevant in the fourth industrial revolution?
In conjunction with MTCC’s 20th Anniversary Celebration bearing the tagline “Pushing Boundaries Advancing Sustainability,” MTCC is organising a one-day conference that seeks to acknowledge, appreciate and celebrate the tremendous hard work, improvements and innovative efforts undertaken by forest managers and timber enterprises, enriched by inputs from stakeholders, that have pushed the boundaries and made advancement in meeting the stringent demands of certification in forest management and chain of custody.
Speakers and moderators will comprise several experts from the whole spectrum of the industry around the globe. Get enlightened by listening to their discussions on the urgent needs for achieving sustainability targets and increasing the availability of certified timber products for consumers in the Malaysian and global markets. Be ready to see the forests beyond timber and keep abreast with the latest initiatives as they share their experience in the innovation of forest products and services towards ensuring a credible, effective and efficient certification in the future.
Three Regional Consultations on EnquiryDraft of the MC&I Forest Management Certification were conducted in Kota Kinabalu, Kuching and Kuala Lumpur on 2 July, 4 July and 9 July 2019 respectively. A total of 127 stakeholders from various interest groups i.e. indigenous people, worker, environmental and economic as well as relevant government agencies attended the consultations.
The Regional Consultations were held in order to update stakeholders on the process and progress of the review, introduce the Enquiry Draft of the MC&I Forest Management Certification, highlight the major updates from previous standards and provide further clarification on the changes that have been made. Presentations made during the sessions can be downloaded here (Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Kuala Lumpur). Written comments and proposals received from the stakeholders during the public consultation period which is ending on 19 July 2019 will be compiled and made publicly available. The compiled comments and proposals will be considered by the SRC at its Fifth Meeting scheduled to be held in October 2019.
The consultations also provided an avenue for valuable interactions and exchange of views with stakeholders on various other matters concerning forest certification and other forestry issues in general.
MTCC as the Secretariat for the SRC would like to thank all stakeholders who have attended and provided valuable comments and inputs during the Regional Consultations held in the three regions. Send us an e-mail at email@example.com should you wish to be included in our mailing list and receive updates on the review process.
MTCC is pleased to announce that Raplex FMU Forest
Management Unit (FMU) has been awarded the Certificate for Forest Management
(Natural Forest) under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS)
following successful certification audits conducted by SIRIM QAS International
Sdn Bhd on 28 June 2019 for a period of 5 years.
Raplex FMU is the second FMU under the Ta Ann Group to be certified and it covers an area of 63,993 hectares in the central region of Sarawak within Kapit Division.
In reference to the on-going Public Consultation on theEnquiry Draftversion of the Malaysian Criteria and Indicators for Forest Management Certification or MC&I Forest Management Certification which is now underway from 20 May 2019 – 19 July 2019, the Secretariat of the Standards Review Committee is pleased to invite relevant and interested stakeholders to participate in the Regional Consultations which will be held as follows:
Date : 2 July 2019 Time : 8.30 a.m. – 5.00 p.m. Venue : Sky Hotel Kota Kinabalu, Lorong Kemajuan, Karamunsing, 8800 Kota Kinabalu Sabah
All relevant and interested stakeholders at the respective regions are invited to participate in the above consultation which aims to provide further clarification on the changes that have been made to the Enquiry Draft and to solicit feedback and comments on the Enquiry Draft.
Kindly complete the Attendance Reply Form that corresponds to the respective regions, for confirmation of attendance and return it to the Secretariat (Fax: 03-2161 2293 or E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org) latest by 28 June 2019. Financial assistance will be provided to cover the costs of transportation and accommodation for outstation participants representing the smaller and disadvantaged NGOs. Please contact the Secretariat should such an assistance is needed.
Comments and proposals on this document can be submitted until the 21st of July 2019 on the PEFC Consultation Website here. All comments and proposals submitted will be considered by the Working Group 5 in the further development of the standard.
You can find here the document which summarises the changes proposed. In addition, two webinars dedicated to explain the main changes, the background and next steps in the standard revision/development will be offered on two separate dates:
MTCC is pleased to inform that PEFC International has announced that a 60 day public consultation on the draft revised PEFC Chain of Custody and Trademark standards has started. All stakeholders are invited to send in comments and proposals.
Comments and proposals on these two documents can be submitted on the PEFC Consultation website here until 9th July 2019. All comments and proposals submitted in this consultation will be considered by the PEFC Chain of Custody and Trademarks Working Group in the further development of these standards.
PEFC also invites all stakeholders to register for a public webinar on the main changes proposed, their background and next steps in the standard revision/development by clicking here. This webinar will be offered on three separate dates:
29th May, 14.00
3rd June, 11.00
3rd July, 11.00
(Please take note that the above mentioned times are Central European Summer Time).
MTCC is pleased to announce that the Enquiry Draft version of the Malaysian Criteria and Indicators for Forest Management Certification or MC&I Forest Management Certification is now open for a 60-day public consultation starting from 20 May 2019 – 19 July 2019.
The Enquiry Draft, which is a revised and merged standard that combines the requirements of both the MC&I(Natural Forest) and MC&I Forest Plantation.v2 was finalised by the Standards Review Committee (SRC) at its Fourth Meeting held on 18-20 February 2019. The MC&I Forest Management Certification maintains the similar format as per the previous standards with updated requirements through deliberation on the feedback received from the first public consultation as well as the key requirements of the ISO 17021-1 Conformity assessment – Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of management systems – Part 1: Requirements,and the PEFC benchmark standard on sustainable forest management. The major changes to the revised MC&I Forest Management Certification are as summarised below:
Incorporation and streamlining of the requirements under Principle 10 of the MC&I Forest Plantation.v2 into the corresponding Principles 1-9 of the MC&I Forest Management to reduce redundancy. All the requirements in the standard apply to both natural forest and forest plantation, with requirements that apply only to natural forest or forest plantation clearly specified.
Inclusion of requirement on conversion of degraded forest to forest plantation that is not subject to the cut-off date of 31 December 2010 for conversion of natural forest to other land uses.
Stronger requirements on social aspects through the incorporation of all core ILO Conventions and the principle of gender equality.
Incorporation of requirements that provide guidance for internal audit and management review and improvement.
Improved clarity on the requirements for communicating claims from certified areas.
Stakeholders are invited to submit comments and/or proposals for amendments to the Enquiry Draft, providing justification for the proposals as well as the suggested wording for the proposed changes.
To provide further clarification on the Enquiry Draft, particularly to the changes that have been made, MTCC will be organising a series of regional consultation as follows:
Kota Kinabalu, Sabah :2 July 2019
Kuching, Sarawak :4 July 2019
Kuala Lumpur, Peninsula : 9 July 2019
Details on the venue of these consultations will be provided in due time.
Your kind cooperation and support in this matter is highly appreciated. Thank you.
PERUNDINGAN AWAM MENGENAI KRITERIA DAN PETUNJUK MALAYSIA UNTUK PENSIJILAN PENGURUSAN HUTAN – DRAF PERTANYAAN
20 MEI 2019 – 19 JULAI 2019
MTCC dengan sukacitanya mengumumkan bahawa Draf Pertanyaan Kriteria dan Petunjuk Malaysia untuk Pensijilan Pengurusan Hutan atau MC&I Pensijilan Pengurusan Hutan kini dibuka untuk perundingan awam selama 60 hari bermula dari 20 Mei 2019 – 19 Julai 2019.
Draf Pertanyaan adalah standard yang menggabungkan keperluan MC&I(Hutan Asli) dan MC&I Forest Plantation.v2 yang telah disemak semula dan dimuktamadkan oleh Jawatankuasa Semakan Semula Standard (SRC) pada Mesyuarat Keempat yang telah diadakan pada 18-20 Februari 2019. MC&I Pensijilan Pengurusan Hutan mengekalkan format yang sama seperti standard terdahulu dengan keperluan standard yang telah dikemaskini melalui pertimbangan maklumbalas yang diterima semasa komen umum yang pertama, keperluan utama di bawah ISO 17021-1 Conformity assessment – Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of management systems – Part 1: Requirements serta standard piawaian pengurusan hutan mampan PEFC. Perubahan utama kepada MC&I Pensijilan Pengurusan Hutan yang telah dikemaskini adalah seperti berikut:
Penggabungan dan penyelarasan keperluan Prinsip 10 dalam MC&I Forest Plantation.v2 dengan keperluan yang sepadan dalam Prinsip 1-9 MC&I Pengurusan Hutan untuk mengurangkan kelewahan. Semua keperluan dalam standard ini tergunapakai untuk kedua-dua jenis hutan asli dan ladang hutan dengan keperluan yang terpakai hanya untuk hutan asli atau ladang hutan dinyatakan secara spesifik.
Syarat tambahan untuk penukaran hutan terosot ke ladang hutan yang tidak tertakluk kepada tarikh penggalan pada 31 Disember 2010 bagi penukaran hutan asli kepada guna tanah yang lain.
Keperluan yang lebih teguh terhadap aspek sosial melalui penggabungan semua Konvensyen Teras ILO serta prinsip kesaksamaan jantina.
Tambahan keperluan yang memberikan panduan bagi pelaksanaan audit dalaman serta semakan pengurusan dan penambahbaikan.
Penambahbaikan standard dari segi keperluan bagi menyampaikan maklumat pensijilan dari kawasan yang tersijil.
Pihak berkepentingan dijemput untuk mengemukakan komen dan/atau cadangan untuk pindaan kepada Draf Pertanyaan, dengan memberikan sebab-sebab bagi cadangan serta cadangan perkataan/penyataan untuk pindaan yang dicadangkan.
Bagi memberikan penjelasan lanjut tentang keperluan dalam Draf Pertanyaan, terutamanya atas perubahan yang telah dibuat, MTCC akan menganjurkan satu siri perundingan serantau seperti berikut:
Kota Kinabalu, Sabah :2 Julai 2019
Kuching, Sarawak :4 Julai 2019
Kuala Lumpur, Semenanjung : 9 Julai 2019
Butiran lanjut mengenai perundingan ini akan dikemukakan dalam waktu terdekat.
Certificate for Forest Management issued to the Kedah State FMU (FMC 0003) against the requirements of MC&I(Natural Forest) have been suspended with effect from 8 May 2019 until further notice. SIRIM QAS International Sdn. Bhd. made this decision after the Kedah State FMU failed to close a major Corrective Action Request (CAR) following the second surveillance audit carried out by SIRIM QAS International Sdn. Bhd. It is required that any major non-conformity raised must be adequately addressed within the given time for the FMU to maintain its certification.
In light of the above development, all logs sourced from the Permanent Reserved Forests (PRFs) in the Kedah State FMU beginning 8 May 2019 (i.e. all logs accompanied by Removal Passes issued dated 8 May 2019 and onwards) will not be recognised as PEFC certified material under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS). Nevertheless, the logs originating from Kedah State FMU can be accepted as PEFC Controlled Sources, provided that a due diligence system has been implemented and does not involve sourcing of logs from conversion areas.
Nilai, 2 May 2019 – Enter into the walk ways leading to the prayer rooms or the rest rooms of every floor of the newly established Aeon Mall Nilai, you enter into a unique environment of pristine forest rich in biodiversity as the walls are beautifully decorated with winning pictures from the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) “Experience Forest, Experience MTCS–PEFC” Photography Contests.
Elliot Erwitt, one of the leading figures in magazine, advertising, and commercial photography said, “Photography is an art of observation. It has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.” To a great extent, the MTCC Photography Contests, conducted in 2017 & 2018, were organized to achieve this objective.
“MTCC hopes that through this platform and the lenses of nature enthusiasts, the winning photographs displayed at Aeon Mall Nilai will enable the general public to see the forests in a different way, to better appreciate the many roles and functions of forests, and a greater awareness that these forests could be sustainably managed, contributing to our national sustainability agenda,” said Yong Teng Koon, CEO of MTCC.
“We appreciate and are very pleased with the collaboration of Aeon Co. (M) Bhd to increase public awareness on the importance of maintaining the integrity of our precious ecosystems, the forests in particular. Such awareness is important to provide support to our work in promoting sustainable forest management through the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS),” Yong added.
Yong was impressed by the elaborate effort made by Aeon Co. (M) Bhd to incorporate sustainability concept in the building and operations of the mall including the provisions of walking spaces and pit stops to encourage its clients to walk more, making the visit to the mall both a leisure and healthy experience.
In collaboration with the Forestry Department Peninsular Malaysia (FDPM), MTCC organised a three-day enhancement course to further enhance the understanding of forestry officers from the various state forestry departments on the implementation and requirements of forest management certification under the MTCS.
A total of 33 officers from FDPM headquarters and the state forestry departments of Johor, Kedah, Kelantan, Negeri Sembilan, Pahang, Perak, Selangor and Terengganu participated in the course. The course also included a field segment which was conducted at the Sungai Durian Forest Reserve in Kelantan.
The MTCC Board took opportunity of its 79th meeting held in Kota Kinabalu on 18 March to visit the renowned Kota Kinabalu Wetlands – the first urban mangrove wetlands in the world to be given a Ramsar status, on 19 March 2019.
The visit which was organised by the Sabah Wetlands Conservation Society (SWCS) was indeed an eye opener for the trustees. The Kota Kinabalu Wetlands is located just two kilometers north-east of Kota Kinabalu and comprises of 60 acres of mainly replanted mangrove forest.
Prior to the visit to the forest, the Board was received and welcomed by the President of SWCS Datuk Hj. Zainie Abdul Aucasa who is also a Trustee of the MTCC Board representing the environment interest. The Board was briefed on the management of the KK Wetlands and how it attained its Ramsar status in 2017. The Board also visited the KK Wetlands gallery museum before embarking on a 1.5km boardwalk into the mangrove forest to appreciate the mangrove ecosystem and the numerous species of fauna and flora found there.
In line with the MTCC 20thAnniversary Celebration’s tagline “Pushing Boundaries, Advancing Sustainability”, MTCC seeks to acknowledge, appreciate and celebrate the tremendous hard work, improvements and innovation undertaken by the certified organisations in meeting the stringent demands of forest management and chain of custody certification under the MTCS. Nominations are now open for certified organisations that have shown exemplary leadership and carried out inspirational initiatives in sustainability.
The inaugural General Assembly of the Global Platform for Sustainable Natural Rubber (GPSNR) was held in Singapore today with PEFC as one of its Founding Members. GPSNR aims to provide an independent platform that will lead to improvements in the socio-economic and environmental performance of the natural rubber value chain.Development of the GPSNR was initiated by the CEOs of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) Tire Industry Project (TIP) in November 2017.
A wide range of members and stakeholders
Members of the platform include tire manufacturers, rubber suppliers and processors, vehicle makers and NGOs. Representatives from each of these stakeholder groups have contributed to the development of the Singapore-based platform and the wide-reaching set of priorities that will define GPSNR strategy and objectives.
Following a ceremonial launch in October 2018, interest in the GPSNR has seen membership grow to include civil society members. The GPSNR remains open to membership applications from natural rubber stakeholders.
The General Assembly saw the approval of the organisation’s Statutes and Code of Conduct, and the formation of an Executive Committee that has the mandate of overseeing the strategic and operational activities of the GPSNR.
As required by the Statutes, there is a multi-stakeholder committee. PEFC International Vice Chair, Genevieve Chua, attended as a voting member at the General Assembly. South East Asia Representative Richard Laity and Keterina Chong are in the Smallholder, and Strategy & objectives Working Group respectively.
Focusing on smallholders
Richard Laity drew the attention of the General Assembly to the importance of including direct representation on GPNSR of smallholders who make up to 75% of rubber producers in South East Asia.
“We need to ensure GPNSR has positive impacts for smallholders and we need to fully appreciate these impacts, as well as measure the risks to this initiative if smallholders are not adequately represented,” Mr Laity noted.
He explained that it is in PEFC’s DNA to meet the needs of smallholders in the forestry sector, and as approximately 85% of rubber production globally comes from smallholders, it is essential that they are meaningfully represented in this new platform.
Without analyzing the data globally, a recent field survey indicated that 3,000 hectares of rubber plantation in Riau Province, Indonesia are already within PEFC certified areas. In addition, thousands of cubic meters of product are being sold with a PEFC Controlled Source verified, meeting emerging market requirements.
The work can begin
The formation of the GPNSR gives strong commitment to sustainability by key market players in the rubber production and supply chain globally.
GPSNR Director Stefano Savi told the meeting: “We know that the real hard work lies ahead, but today from Singapore we send a clear message – the GPSNR is open for business.”
Following proceedings from Geneva, Peter Bakker, WBCSD’s President and CEO said “Today, our members are joined by a growing and increasingly well-balanced GPSNR membership of rubber value chain and civil society members – the actors are in place, and the foundations for transformative action along the natural rubber value chain have been laid. Now the real work can begin.”
The Fourth Meeting of the SRC was held on 18-20 February 2019 in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah and was attended by a total of 19 participants comprising Members, Alternate Members and Observers.
During the Meeting, the SRC considered the incorporation of the requirements of Principle 10 of MC&I Forest Plantation.v2 into the relevant Criteria and Indicators of Principles 1 to 9 of the new streamlined standard. The Meeting also considered and agreed to incorporate new requirements of the PEFC ST 1003:2018 Sustainable Forest Management – Requirementsinto the draft standard to ensure conformance to the PEFC Sustainability Benchmark which had been revised and approved by the PEFC General Assembly on 14 November 2018. The Meeting also reached consensus on an Enquiry Draft which shall be circulated for Public Consultation in 2019 along with the revised process and timelines for the review of MC&I(Natural Forest).
Members of the SRC participated in a field visit to Bornion Timber Sdn Bhd, a certified FMU under the MTCS on 21 February 2019. Besides being briefed on the operation of the FMU, Members of the SRC also visited sites planted with Laran (Neolamarckia cadamba) species.
Partners and initiators of the Timber Pavilion namely Assink Wood, Scantimber / Hasslacher, PEFC quality mark, Trade Journal Houtwereld, IEB, Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC), Malaysian Timber Council (MTC) and through the support of 85 companies and organisations, bags the inaugural “Outstanding Award” at the 2019 Bouwbeurs Construction Fair.
The Timber Pavilion was judged to be the most attractive stand that brought the most visitors at the Construction Fair. The collaborative effort also matches the theme of the Fair: “Time to join forces”.
The Timber Pavilion which promotes the use of wood in construction was a huge success. The Third Edition of the Construction Fair was bigger this year with 200 square meters complete with a tower located at the entrance. The Fair attracted more than 75,000 visitors comprising largely contractors, directors and business owners.
The 2019 Bouwbeurs Construction Fair was held from 4 – 8 February 2019 at Utrecht, Netherlands.
23 January, Kuala Lumpur – Financial institutions have a key role to play in leading and supporting efforts to address issues relating to sustainability and climate change. It is not only about redirecting investments to renewable energy and low-carbon businesses, but also to bolster the resilience of forests as one of the major tools in mitigating the impacts of climate change.
Taking into consideration the growing need for certification to ensure sustainable timber production and trade, Maybank Investment Bank in collaboration with Bursa Malaysia recently organised a Timber Day “Into the Woods” programme in creating awareness on what this certification means for Malaysia’s timber industry and the sustainability of our forest heritage.
The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) was delighted to be invited as one of the two speakers to speak at this event which was attended by some 50 participants representing investor, stockbroker and government-linked companies, as well as the media.
MTCC CEO, Yong Teng Koon shared his perspective on the subject matter through a presentation entitled “Why Certification?: The case of the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS).”
“The establishment of MTCC in 1998 has a two-fold objective: to provide the check and balance in ensuring that Malaysia’s rich forest resources are managed sustainably, and to ensure the availability of sustainably produced timber and timber products to meet market and consumers’ demand for such products, especially in the developed countries. Through forest management and chain of custody (CoC) certification under the MTCS, every piece of certified timber products that is being sold could be traced back to the certified forest where the timber came from,” Yong explained.
Yong pointed out currently some 4.49 million hectares of natural forest and 120,100 hectares of forest plantations have been certified under the MTCS. Additionally, some 359 companies have been certified under CoC certification. And there is still much room for further growth and expansion for both forest management and CoC certification. In this regard, the mandatory requirement by the Sarawak State Government for all long-term concessionaires to obtain certification by 2022 is certainly a step in the right direction.
“Certified timber products have mainly been exported to the European market principally due to the more progressive procurement policies that have been instituted in these countries which demand for better accountability in environmental protection and conservation. Nonetheless, there are still markets or countries that do not require such strict import scrutiny which makes it challenging to encourage more companies to obtain certification,” Yong elaborated.
Yong concluded his presentation by stressing on the importance of stronger cross-sectoral collaboration and requested Bursa Malaysia to include the MTCS-PEFC reference in its Sustainability Reporting Guide & Toolkit under the environmental themes and responsible sourcing indicators.
He also implored the banking institutions to include MTCS-PEFC reference in their Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Framework for the timber sector and promote the use of PEFC certified products in their collaterals and everyday office usage.
Kuala Lumpur, 18 January – A group of international students majoring in Wood Science Technology from Kyungpook National University of Korea, visited the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) office to learn more about the process of timber certification in the country.
The two-hour visit was warmly received by MTCC CEO, Mr. Yong Teng Koon who also briefed the students on how the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) operated and its achievement by becoming the first tropical timber certification scheme in the region to be endorsed by the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) – an accreditation body of the largest forest area in the world.
The students were also given the opportunity to discuss with MTCC management on how forest certification and the Chain of Custody (CoC) have becoming a vital role in championing the issue of sustainability.
MTCS is recognised by the Green Building Index (GBI) Malaysia under its Sustainable Timber criterion. As a PEFC-endorsed scheme, the scheme is also recognised by several green building schemes in Australia, Italy, The Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Canada, Japan and Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
As 2018 draws to a close, it is time to reflect on 2018 and welcome 2019.
The Year 2018 has been a rather refreshing year with new experience for Malaysia and MTCC. The Year saw for the first time in 60 years the formation of a new Government and for MTCC, the appointment of YB Puan Teresa Kok as the new Minister of Primary Industries and YBhg Datuk K. Yogeesvaran as our new Chairman
Besides the routine work of monitoring forest management and chain of custody certification, and conduct of activities to promote the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS), we have been actively engaged in the review of both the MTCS forest management standard, as well as the PEFC SFM and CoC standards in 2018. We are pleased to note an overall increase in the number of certified forest management units (FMUs) from 16 to 21, and a slight increase from 357 to 359 timber companies certified under the chain of custody certification. The Year also saw the successful conduct of the Second MTCC Photography Contest that had attracted much publicity through the submission of a total of 990 photographs and 12 short videos, as well as the MTCC Strategic Planning Workshop to solicit feedback from stakeholders to chart the future directions of the MTCC.
Looking forward, I wish to take this opportunity to announce that MTCC turns 20 in 2019 – a significant milestone taking into consideration the many challenges faced in the growth and development of the MTCC since it started operation in 1999. The last 20 years have seen MTCC taking the arduous task of starting from ground zero, planning, creating awareness, and building of trust and confidence amongst the various stakeholders in implementing a credible Malaysian timber certification scheme. The efforts made were duly rewarded when the MTCS received international recognition in 2009 when it was endorsed by the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), the world largest forest certification system. Today we are delighted that the PEFC-endorsed MTCS has been accepted under the public procurement policies and green building schemes of many developed countries notably in Europe.
In this context, 20 years is definitely a significant milestone for MTCC and worth celebrating. Hence I am also pleased to inform that a number of activities will be organised by MTCC throughout 2019 to commemorate its 20th anniversary. To begin with, a special 20th Anniversary Logo bearing the Tagline: Pushing Boundaries Advancing Sustainability, has been designed to promote and heighten awareness of this momentous milestone and celebration.
The overall logo in circles exhibits a notion of continuity – signifies the establishment of MTCC and its continual operation for many more decades to come, which also embodies the goal for sustainability. A multiplicity of textures and elements of nature is depicted by freestyle strokes in different shades of green, be it patterns on a soil ground, rings of a tree trunk, shadow stripes of branches under the sun, or water flow in a stream. Whilst other small words are neatly legible, the dominant font of “20th” is imbued with components of growth through the shapes of a wavy leaf and twirling stems. The MTCC logo is incorporated and forms a fruit shape that signifies fruitfulness and the accomplishments of MTCC in various aspects to reach its 20th year and beyond.
The overall logo in circles exhibits a notion of continuity – signifies the establishment of MTCC and its continual operation for many more decades to come, which also embodies the goal for sustainability. A multiplicity of textures and elements of nature is depicted by freestyle strokes in different shades of green, be it patterns on a soil ground, rings of a tree trunk, shadow stripes of branches under the sun, or water flow in a stream. Whilst other small words are neatly legible, the dominant font of “20th” is imbued with components of growth through the shapes of a wavy leaf and twirling stems. The MTCC logo is incorporated and forms a fruit shape that signifies fruitfulness and the accomplishments of MTCC in various aspects to reach its 20th year and beyond.
The Tagline “Pushing Boundaries Advancing Sustainability” aptly encapsulates what MTCC has been doing over the past 20 years and will continue to do so to advance the cause of forest sustainability through the implementation of the MTCS. Since its establishment, MTCC has been pushing boundaries to advance forest sustainability notably in the following fronts:
(i) changing mindsets of all parties involved to realise the importance of implementing sustainable forest management through forest management and chain of custody certification;
(ii) increasing stakeholders’ participation and engagement to garner better acceptance of the MTCS;
(iii) strengthening certification standards through multi-stakeholder consultation process to embrace the three pillars of sustainability covering social, environmental and social aspects;
(iv) widening recognition and acceptance of the MTCS both locally and internationally; and
(v) expanding the extent of forest areas and number of timber companies certified under the MTCS to cover all three regions in Malaysia.
You will be updated periodically on the MTCC’s 20th Anniversary Celebration which will culminate in the conduct of a MTCC Timber Certification Conference followed by an Anniversary Dinner scheduled to held in September 2019.
The achievements of the MTCC over the last two decades would not have been possible without the support and cooperation of our stakeholders representing the environmental and social interest groups, timber associations, government departments and agencies, research and academic institutions as well as the certification bodies which provided the independent third-party audit for both forest management and chain of custody certification. MTCC greatly appreciates your contributions and looks forward to your continued support to chart the future of the MTCS to advance the implementation of sustainable forest management in Malaysia.
Wishing everyone a Happy, Healthy and Productive 2019!
Heartiest congratulations to Bahau-Kahei Forest Management Unit (FMU) on being awarded the Certificate for Forest Management (NaturalForest) under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) on 19 December 2018. Bahau-Kahei FMU is the fifth FMU in Sarawak to be awarded the certificate by SIRIM QAS International Sdn Bhd.
Managed by Jaya Tiasa Holdings Bhd, the FMU covers an area of about 45,035 ha in the Upper Kapit Division and is part of the Heart of Borneo (HoB) Initiative.
MTCC organized a two-day Auditor Training Course on PEFC Chain of Custody Certification under the MTCS on 19 to 20 December 2018 in Kuala Lumpur.
The course was conducted to train new CoC auditors so that they are familiar with and knowledgeable on the requirements of the PEFC ST 2002:2013 Chain of Custody of Forest Based Products -Requirements. The course was conducted to fulfill the training requirement for auditors as stipulated in para 18.104.22.168.2 of the PEFC ST 2003:2012 Requirements for Certification Bodies operating Certification against the PEFC International Chain of Custody Standard document.
The training was conducted Ms. Sabrina Hj Mawasi, Manager (Product) of MTCC who is a PEFC qualified trainer and attended by six participants from three Certification Bodies and two participants from STANDARDS MALAYSIA.
Kuala Lumpur, 4 December 2018 – Two graduating students from the Faculty of Forestry, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) received the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) Academic Awards for outstanding academic and scholastic achievements in their overall academic performance and final year project thesis.
MTCC CEO, Mr.Yong Teng Koon said that the annual awards were jointly determined with the Faculty of Forestry, UPM to recognise graduating students who have excelled in their studies and produced a quality final year thesis based on the prescribed fields of study. It is also aimed to spur the undergraduate students to pursue academic excellence so that they could be the future award recipients.
This year, the two award recipients were: (i) Nurul Kamaliah Eddy Marman’s with her thesis titled, “Dead Wood Chracteristics Influencing Macrofungal Diversity in Fragmented Forest”, and (ii) Muhammad Khairulddin Fadzil’s with his thesis “Assessment on Soil Physico Chemical Properties of Secondary and Rehabilitated Forests in Universiti Putra Malaysia Bintulu, Sarawak”. Each of them earned RM1,000 in cash and a Certificate of Achievement from MTCC.
“I would like to thank MTCC for this award. It is truly an honour for me to be one of the recipients. I am convinced of the importance of forests and agreed that we must all do our part to protect and care for our forest, both for my own sake and the sake of our future generation,” said Muhammad.
Beaming with excitement over receiving the award, Nurul shared, “The MTCC Academic Award has motivated me to work hard and I am so happy to be recognised and receive this award. I hope to be able to contribute to our national sustainability agenda in ensuring the precious forest resources that we have will be sustainably managed.”
“The future of our forests lies in the hands of our future generations. The younger generation must be prepared and engaged to chart this future. Engaging them at the university level while they are young and eager to learn, motivating them to pursue academic excellence and raising their awareness of shared responsibility in this endeavour is definitely a significant step in the right direction,” Yong concluded.
First presented in 2016, the MTCC Academic Awards aim to recognise outstanding students from the forestry-related field of study who have distinguished themselves by demonstrating overall academic excellence and scholarship in their final year project thesis.
The Freezailah Forest Sustainability Award recognizes outstanding students in the field of forestry. (Third from left) 2018 Award recipient, Hoo Pui Kiat, is presented a cash prize of RM2,000 by (second from left) Universiti Malaysia Sabah Vice Chancellor, Professor Dato’ Dr. D Kamaruddin D Mudin; and witnessed by Dean of Faculty of Science and Natural Resources, Professor Dr Baba Musta and MTCC CEO, Mr Yong Teng Koon.
Kota Kinabalu, 26 November 2018– In an effort to promote academic excellence and inculcate the love for forests amongst university students, the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) has been collaborating with the Faculty of Science and Natural Resources, Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) in jointly determining the worthy recipient oftheFreezailah Forest Sustainability Award since 2016.
“The Freezailah Forest Sustainability Award, named after MTCC’s founder Chairman Dato’ Dr Freezailah Che Yeom, aims to recognise the achievement of outstanding students and to spur other students to pursue academic excellence in their respective fields of study. This award is given to the graduating student with the best academic achievement and a final year project thesis that meets the prescribed quality and scope of study,” explained MTCC CEO, Mr. Yong Teng Koon
Student Hoo Pui Kiat with a thesis entitled “Comparison of Tree Diversity & Species Composition Across a Multi-Land Use and Tree Diversity-Carbon Relationship in GOM-UNDP-GEF Project, Luasong, Sabah” was judged the winner for the Freezailah Forest Sustainability Award for 2018. Hoo’s research indicated that human modified land use causes negative impacts to the forest and better land use management is crucial to avoid such irreversible impacts on tree diversity, changes in species composition and carbon stock. He received RM2,000 in cash and a Certificate of Achievement from MTCC.
“I am very happy to be awarded the Freezailah Forest Sustainability Award. It is a great honour and will definitely motivate me and strengthen my resolve to do my part to contribute and promote forest sustainability in Malaysia. I hope all Malaysians will do likewise as forests are so important and crucial to our lives and well-being,” said Hoo after receiving his award at the 20thUMS Convocation.
“The future of sustainability lies in the hands of our future generations. In this regard, we must do our part in preparing and engaging our next generation so that they will be able to see and embrace our vision for full implementation of sustainable forest management in Malaysia. Engaging them at the university level while they are young and eager to learn, promoting academic excellence and raising awareness of their shared responsibility in this endeavour is definitely a significant step in the right direction,” Yong concluded.
The prevailing concern amongst the public on using wood stems mainly from the misconception that using wood would contribute to deforestation and causes adverse impacts on the environment. This is understandable given the increasing level of environmental consciousness, the negative perception associated with timber harvesting or logging, as well as the vital role of forests in mitigating climate change.
Amidst the increasing awareness on the impact of climate change due primarily to carbon emissions and the need for sustainable utilisation of nature’s resources to mitigate the impacts, sustainable management of forests and responsible use of wood products have become important mechanisms to provide solutions to address these concerns.
The general public needs to be informed that wood is our best environmental choice! In fact, wood is a carbon neutral material. Healthy forests are net producers of oxygen through photosynthesis. Growing trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. The oxygen is released back into the atmosphere, while the carbon is used by the tree and stored in the wood for the life of the tree and the products made from it. Additionally, natural wood products are among the most energy-efficient to produce, while making products from steel, aluminum, glass, concrete, and brick can require up to 126 times more energy to manufacture. Hence, utilizing timber sourced from sustainably managed forests is the way forward for a sustainable future.
Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) took this up as a responsibility and sought opportunities to engage with key actors/influencers in promoting the use of wood as a carbon-neutral material and for such material to be produced sustainably.
Believing in the crucial role of architects in specifying the use of wood in designing and constructing building, MTCC in collaboration with a renowned architect, AR Azman Zainal had recently conducted a talk with members of the Malaysian Institute of Architects (PAM) under their Continuing Professional Development programme on how the use of “good wood” inbuilt structures could provide benefits to well-being, society, and the environment.
At the talk that was attended by seventy-eight PAM members, MTCC’s Senior Manager (Forest Management), Siti Syaliza Mustapha shared information on the current status of forest cover in the country and described the practices of sustainable forest management (SFM) which were designed to ensure sustainable utilisation of forest resources, while taking into the account the need for community development, workers’ safety and wildlife and environmental protection, amongst others. She also introduced the roles and functions of MTCC and how the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) is operated to provide a credible assurance of scientific-based SFM practices through third-party verification. In emphasizing on the architects’ roles in contributing to SFM, Siti encouraged the architects to specify the use of certified wood in their projects and stressed that “wood is good, but certified wood is better.”
Following MTCC’s presentation, Ar Azman delivered his presentation titled “Wood For Wellbeing And Wellness” and shared his experience of applying timber in architecture as a structural material rather than a mere external application; explaining that timber makes a better material from a health perspective for personal well-being and wellness while exuding aesthetical beauty. To inject confidence in architects to use more timber, he addressed six challenges of using wood and familiarised the audience of architects with wood-related terms and explained the how-to of specifying timber. He concluded the presentation by showing examples of magnificent timber building structures from around the world, including his own magnificent wooden home situated in Port Dickson.
The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) as the National Governing Body of the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) undertakes periodic reviews of its standards and technical documents to ensure that they take into account the various developments concerning accreditation and certification requirements, amongst others.
The normative document titled Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) and Its Implementation Agreement (MTCS 8/2015) sets out the key components, requirements and implementation arrangement of the MTCS. At the recent 77thMeeting of the MTCC Board of Trustees held on 22 October 2018, the MTCC Board of Trustees has approved the amendment which allows for the maximum period of five (5) years for the recertification audit for forest management certification of natural and plantation forests, in line with the PEFC Normative document – Annex 6 on Certification and Accreditation Procedures and the ISO/IEC 17021-1:2015(E) Conformity assessment – Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of management systems (Clause 22.214.171.124, Note 3). With the approval by the MTCC Board of Trustees, the MTCS 8/2015 is effectively cancelled and replaced with the MTCS 9/2018.
The MTCS 9/2018 which came into force on 22 October 2018 is applicable to all new certificates issued by Certification Bodies, while existing certificate holders will be granted the five (5) years maximum validity of certificate upon successful completion of the recertification audit.
Should you need any clarification regarding this document, please do not hesitate to contact Ms Siti Syaliza, Senior Manager (Forest Management) at email@example.com or 03-2161 2298.
MTCC engages young people to love and care for forests at KLESF 2018
Kuala Lumpur, 12November 2018 – Recognising that the future of sustainability lies in the hands of the future generation, the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) participated in the Kuala Lumpur Engineering Science Fair (KLESF) 2018 for the fourth year running with the main intention of engaging primary and secondary school children to inspire them to love and care for our valuable natural resource – the forests.
“With the tagline Sustainable Forest, Sustainable Future, MTCC believes that sustainably managing our forests is crucial in ensuring a sustainable livelihood, simply because our wellbeing is so intricately linked and dependent on the myriad of services provided by the forests. When we talk of the future, it is imperative to include the younger generation as they would be the one to continue to uphold our vision for a sustainable Malaysia. MTCC’s participation at KLESF for the fourth time is aimed at connecting with the next generation who will be the future guardians of our forest resources. And we believe in engaging them young to instil in them the sense of responsibility and love to care for our forests for posterity,” said MTCC CEO, Yong Teng Koon.
This year, MTCC took the students on a journey to discover what sustainability of living and forests means through its attractive educational booth at KLESF. In addition to a 3D model depicting the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) certification process, students were shown a video on what sustainable forest management entails, and were taken on an interactive ‘forest’ journey through poster display, with information on the role of protection and production forests, sustainable harvesting of forest products, the role of MTCS in promoting forest sustainability. The students also learned about how they can contribute towards achieving sustainability, for example through making lifestyle choices that are based on the 3Rs principle of “Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.”
To instil the sense of commitment, the students were asked to write their green pledge on leaf-shaped notes and have these pasted on a ‘Green Pledge Wall’ which finally formed the image of a tree in full bloom; signifying the need for teamwork in our sustainability endeavour. To better appreciate our forests, the booth also featured a magnificent tropical forest backdrop for the students to take photographs or selfies of themselves. A total of 480 students visited the MTCC Booth over the 3-day KLSEF.
“We must believe in and start preparing our younger generation to be the change agents who can ensure our vision for a sustainable Malaysia lives on. In this regard, the decision by the Government earlier this year to include environmental education in schools to inculcate a better understanding and appreciation of the environment is timely and I hope it would be implemented as soon as possible,” Yong concluded.
Kuala Lumpur, 31 October 2018– Nothing is more awe-inspiring and mesmerizing than a photograph that captures the wonder and beauty of nature. That was precisely what the 25 winning photographs and one short video from the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) Photography Contest 2018 have done in captivating the audience at Malaysia’s largest imaging event, the Kuala Lumpur Photography Festival (KLPF), from 26 to 28 October 2018.
Bearing the theme “Experience Forest, Experience MTCS–PEFC”, the Second Edition of the MTCC Photography Contest which ran from 1 June to 10 September 2018 garnered a total submission of 990 photographs and 12 short videos from 133 participants with a good mix of entries from Sabah, Sarawak and Peninsular Malaysia.
According to Elliot Erwitt, one of the leading figures in magazine, advertising, and commercial photography, “Photography is an art of observation. It has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.”
“To a great extent, the MTCC Photography Contest was organized to achieve this objective. MTCC hopes that through this platform and the lenses of nature enthusiasts, the photographs produced and displayed at KLPF will enable both the photographers and general public to see the forests in a different way, to better appreciate the many roles and functions of forests, and a greater awareness that these forests could be sustainably managed, contributing to our national sustainability agenda,” said MTCC CEO, Mr Yong Teng Koon.
Truly capturing the essence of forest sustainability was the Grand Prize photograph titled “Germination”, which bagged Mohd Samsi Sumairi a cash prize of RM2,000 and a photobook courtesy of PCP Publications. The photograph showcasing a ray of sunlight seeping through towering trees in the dense Kanching Forest Reserve, with a budding seedling at the forefront taking center stage, symbolizing continued growth and renewal, is a picture perfect of sustainability .
Sharing his joy and message behind his winning photograph, Sumairi said, “Forests are valuable natural treasures key to maintaining sustainability of life in the aspects of economy, social and environment. My photograph of the budding seedling symbolises two things – the ability of forests to regenerate, as well as sustainability and hope for the coming generations. I am grateful to MTCC for giving me this opportunity to explore and express my love for forests through this contest. I hope that more people will learn to care for and relish our wonderful nature in Malaysia.”
Besides the original three categories: (i) Forest and People, (ii) Forest and Forest Landscapes, and (iii) Forest and Animals, the MTCC Photography Contest 2018 also included a brand new short video category in recognition of the power of videography to spark human emotion and connection to forests. The First Prize winners for the three categories of photography are as follows:
Forest and People: Redzuan Bohari
Forest and Forest Landscapes: Teoh Wen Chong
Forest and Animals: Pang Siew Peng
Bagging the RM500 cash prize for the video category was Lee Yen Phin whose short video showcased Sabah’s stunning tropical forest scenery coupled with beautiful sounds of nature.
The first prize winners in each category received RM1,000 each, while two merit prizes of RM500 and five consolation prizes of RM200 each per category were also awarded. All winners also received a photobook courtesy of PCP Publications. All winning photographs and the winning short video were exhibited at the MTCC’s booth for visitors’ viewing pleasure.
About 130 students from the Faculty of Design and Architecture, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) participated in an educational talk titled “Designing The Future With Sustainable Timber” jointly organised by the Faculty and the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) on 8 October 2018.
The half-day education talk comprising two presentations was aimed at impressing the budding architects to appreciate wood and to embrace sustainability in their designs by prescribing the use of certified timber. It was also aimed at inspiring the architectural students to do their bit for the environment by supporting the implementation of sustainable forest management through certification in Malaysia.
The first presentation by MTCC CEO, Mr Yong Teng Koon provided an update on the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS), the implementation of which has made available the supply of MTCS-certified timber and timber products, both for export and local use.
“Timber is a renewable, versatile and aesthetically appealing building material that architects should capitalise on to design creative sustainable living solutions. Currently wood has been used mainly as form works in construction. Through this talk, we hope to spark the imagination of aspiring architects to use timber and in particular MTCS-certified timber beyond the form works stage, but as building material, be it for structure or interior decoration. In this age when the world is so concerned about the impact of climate change due to greenhouse gases (GHG) emission, the use of more wood in building would enable more carbon to be locked in the buildings throughout their life time. This would also contribute to our national effort to reduce GHG emission in line with our commitment made at the Paris Agreement,” said Yong.
In the second presentation, Ar Azman Zainal Md Nor, an established home grown architect shared his experience in the use of wood in building construction. He is most qualified to give the talk as he has “walked the talk” having built his three-storey wooden house solely with recycled timber and without nails, as well as many other timber bungalows and renovations elsewhere. His immense love for wood was manifested throughout his presentation. According to Ar Azman, “Wood is the most environmentally friendly material. It’s easy to use and shape than cement. More importantly, it is also a healthier choice as wooden homes have been proven to contribute towards the wellness and wellbeing of people dwelling within.”
Kuala Lumpur, 17 October 2018 – As the nation moves towards implementing green economy and becoming a centre for green technology, the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) operated by the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) is an important partner in this endeavour. The MTCS ensures that timber and timber products manufactured and traded from Malaysia are sourced from sustainably managed forests, covering social, environmental and economic aspects of forest management.
“This is the third time that MTCC is participating in the International Greentech & Eco Products Exhibition and Conference Malaysia (IGEM) 2018 which will be held from 17 to 20 October at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre. We believe this is an ideal platform for us to reach out to more local and regional businesses, to raise awareness on the advantages of choosing certified timber as a raw material to grow the green economy,” said MTCC Chief Executive Officer, Yong Teng Koon.
According to MTCC, timber is and will remain as the most environment friendly material. It is renewable and consumes considerably less energy in its production compared to other raw materials.
“Businesses can support our national sustainability agenda as well as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 2030 by prescribing the use of certified timber. The MTCS certification allows organisations, from small-and-medium-sized enterprises to large companies, to exercise responsible sourcing throughout their supply chains. In so doing, they will be contributing towards protecting the environment, in particular our precious and biologically rich tropical forests,” Yong elaborated.
To increase the uptake of MTCS certification locally, MTCC also encourages consumers to make conscious choices to support products made using certified timber. “We are happy to witness more and more local household brands including Royal Selangor, Signature Kitchen, Setia-Wood Industries (subsidiary of SP Setia), and Dapo Kitchenware, embrace sustainability requirements in their businesses through the MTCS Chain of Custody certification,” added Yong.
Since its implementation in 2001, a total of 4.46 million ha of forest areas and 368 timber companies have been certified under the MTCS. Currently, MTCS-certified timber is exported to 65 destinations worldwide including key markets such as the Netherlands, United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, Belgium, France and Japan.
MTCC will be located at Booth 1275, Hall 2 of the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.
A one-day training will be held on 8 November 2018 at MTCC Board Room to familiarise potential peer reviewers on the requirements of MC&I(Natural Forest) and MC&I Forest Plantation.v2 standards. Peer reviewers are independent experts appointed to review forest management certification audit reports prepared by the Certification Body (CB) to ensure that the audit has been conducted professionally and in compliance with the requirements of the certification standard.
A nominal participation fee of RM30 will be charged for the training to cover the costs of the training, including lunch and tea breaks. The training is open to all professionals with the relevant expertise and experience as follows:
> 5 years’ experience in the fields of forestry, forest ecology, environmental sciences, biology, sociology, forest economics, zoology, and agriculture
Good understanding of the certification standards
Have experience in assessing adequacy of reports
Expertise or good knowledge in:
Forestry laws & regulations
Social aspects of forestry
Sustainable forest management
If you are interested to become a peer reviewer, please fill up the form and return it to MTCC via email: firstname.lastname@example.org or fax: 03-2161 2293 latest by 2 NOVEMBER 2018. Please do not hesitate to contact Mr. Haniff Salleh at 03-2161 2298 if you have any further enquiries.
Mr Kenny Looi from SGS (Malaysia), presenting the MTCS Chain of Custody to Mr Shanthan Suppiah, General Manager of Setia Wood Industries Sdn Bhd witness by Mr Yong Teng Koon, MTCC CEO
S P Setia Offers Forest-friendly Flooring Option
Through Chain of Custody Certification
Kuala Lumpur, 1 October 2018 – Setia-Wood Industries Sdn Bhd (Setia-Wood), a subsidiary of S P Setia Berhad (S P Setia), recently obtained the Chain of Custody (CoC) certification under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS), demonstrating its commitment to source sustainable materials.
With the MTCS certification, S P Setia effectively becomes the first property developer in Malaysia to showcase its support for sustainable forest management through such a certification. Setia-Wood aims to progressively increase the use of PEFC/MTCS-certified timber flooring for its residential projects. Hence, customers can make informed purchasing decisions when investing in their house that they are also contributing to the sustainable management of our forest.
“The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) applauds S P Setia’s efforts in championing green initiatives and embracing sustainability requirements in its development projects. The award of the MTCS CoC Certificate to Setia-Wood Industries Sdn Bhd further attests to S P Setia’s commitment to the cause of responsible forest management. We hope more developers in Malaysia will follow in the footsteps of S P Setia in obtaining certification and advocating the use of MTCS-certified timber in their projects,” said MTCC CEO, Mr Yong Teng Koon.
The MTCS is a national timber certification scheme operated by MTCC to promote sustainable forest management. A CoC certified company must be able to demonstrate that it has implemented and fulfilled the necessary quality standards required under the MTCS which ensures that forests from which the wood is sourced and managed sustainably. Since the implementation of the MTCS in 2001, and as of August 2018, a total of 4.45 million hectares of forest areas and 365 timber companies have been certified under the MTCS. In addition, MTCS has been endorsed by the largest forest certification scheme in the world namely the PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) providing further credibility to the scheme.
Commenting on the certification, Shanthan Suppiah, General Manager of Setia Woods said, “We are Malaysia’s leading developer in building green townships, and thus we strive to innovate and offer the latest eco-concepts while adhering to environmental sustainability requirements. The MTCS certification is another step towards our commitment to incorporate sustainability practices in S P Setia’s projects. People often forget that using renewable energy sources, reducing our carbon footprint, environmental protection, and achieving ecological health, are ways to drive sustainability without having to compromise our modern lifestyles. We want to continue leading the way in building homes embracing sustainability criteria for the public. Hence, we are pleased to join the MTCS family in its aspiration to contribute to good forest management practices”.
At S P Setia, we are always looking for more innovative ways to offer the best possible options to our customers and incorporating MTCS-certified products into our designs will definitely add value to our projects which are known for their high standard of quality”, he added.
The MTCS-certified flooring products will be used in S P Setia’s eco-friendly Viia Residences located within the KL Eco City development. S P Setia has embarked on building green townships as far back as 2005 with its first eco-themed concept development, Setia Eco Park, in Setia Alam, Selangor. The Group has since proceeded with bigger and bolder initiatives in embracing eco concepts and sustainability, as exemplified in the Setia Eco Glades, Setia Eco Templer and soon to be launched Setia Fontaines in Penang.
“MTCC is excited that Setia-Wood has achieved this milestone of offering forest-friendly flooring solutions to home buyers. Protecting our forests often comes in the form of making greener purchasing decisions, and Setia-Wood has made it possible for consumers to do their part for the environment through the MTCS certification. We hope that many more developers will also pursue timber certification for their wood-based products to help raise consumers’ awareness on sustainable forest management,” concluded Yong.
MTCC 19th Annual General Meeting was held at its office during which the Audited Accounts of the MTCC for Financial Year ended 31 December 2017 together with the Reports of the Trustees and Auditors, and the Annual Report for the year 2017, were tabled and adopted.
Contest Seeks Stunning Images and Short Videos of Malaysian Forests
Kuala Lumpur, 3 September 2018– The MTCC Photography Contest 2018 has finalised its judging panel with Malaysian photographer, writer and educator, Azul Adnan, filling up a spot as guest judge. Azul’s passion and talent for photography has landed his captivating photos on the websites of National Geographic and the BBC, as well as in magazines, Digital Camera and Lonely Planet.
Besides Azul, the contest judging panel will consist of MTCC CEO, Yong Teng Koon and PCP Publications General Manager and Editor-in-chief, Jessica Chan.
“Photography is a beautiful form of art that captures sights and moments in its most authentic manner. It preserves the object at its best in small frame and allows you to view and appreciate them at leisure, anytime. Hence, MTCC is organising the MTCC Photography Contest once again after a successful inaugural run last year. We all know that a picture is worth a thousand words and can encapsulate many wonderful stories. Through the Photography Contest, we hope to instill a greater appreciation for Malaysia’s forest heritage. In this regard, we are most happy to have Azul as our guest judge to help in selecting the best photos and videos as he is a master in his own right having produced many wonderful images,” said Yong.
Azul is a regular speaker at Malaysia’s largest photography exhibition, the annual Kuala Lumpur Photography Festival.
Sharing about his passion for photography, Azul said, “Every image captured tells a unique story. My love for photography is simply an expression of my love for people and the environment. That is why I always try to engage with the scene or view in front of me in a unique way through photography. Similarly, the MTCC Photography Contest looks for photographs that can engage with the subject of the photo, be it forest landscapes, animals, or people contributing to the forestry industry. I believe a good photo has the ability to stir in others a sense of care or fascination for the subject at hand; and love for Malaysia’s irreplaceable forests.”
This year’s contest consists of three themes for its camera category and one video category:
Category 1– Forests and People; seeks images of people involved in the field of forestry responsible for the well-being of Malaysia’s forest resources such as foresters, forest rangers, forest researchers, auditors and indigenous peoples.
Category 2– Forests and Forest Landscapes; this category welcomes any shots showcasing the natural beauty, diversity and uniqueness of forests by capturing the geological, climatological features and natural environment of Malaysian forests.
Category 3– Forests and Fauna; seeks amazing images of animals in the wild including mammals, birds, amphibians or reptiles.
Category 4– Video category – Wonders and Sounds of Nature; which requires participants to record the wonders of Malaysian forests in a 30 seconds to three minutes short video clip. Participants may use a variety of mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, drones, GoPros, or a combination of these mobile devices
“Last year, we received many stunning images which showcased our local forests in many different ways. This time round, we hope to see more submissions that truly tell the story of nature through fresh eyes. We would also like to engage the skillful videographers out there who can use visual arts to capture the wonderful sights and sounds of Malaysian forests in captivating short videos,” said Yong.
Creative photo submissions that meet contest criteria will be in the running to win a grand prize of RM2,000, a first prize of RM1,000 per category, two merit prizes of RM500 per category and five consolation prizes of RM200 per category. Meanwhile, the best three mobile phone video clips will receive a cash prize of RM500 each. In addition, all winners will also receive a photobook courtesy of PCP Publications. Participation is open to Malaysians who have a fervent passion for forests and photography. Participants may submit up to 10 images for each category and are required to upload their entries to a cloud storage system and email the link to email@example.com.
The MTCC Photography Contest 2018 prize giving ceremony will be held at KLPF 2018 this October, while winning photos will be exhibited for the viewing pleasure of professional photographers, photography enthusiasts, and the general public.
The Third Meeting of the SRC was held from 17-18 July 2018 in Port Dickson, Negeri Sembilan. The Meeting which was attended by a total of 21 participants comprising Members, Alternate Members and Observers continued deliberation on the working draft that contained a streamlined requirements of both the MC&I(Natural Forest) and MC&I Forest Plantation.v2.
The Meeting also discussed the proposal to restructure the standard based on three possible options. The first option was to restructure the standard according to the ISO High Level Standard; the second was to maintain the existing structure with updated requirements; while the third option was to maintain the structure and incorporate Principle 10 of the MC&I Forest Plantation.v2 into the relevant Criteria and Indicators of Principle 1 to 9 of the streamlined standard. After a lengthy discussion, the Meeting agreed to maintain the existing structure while exploring the feasibility of incorporating the requirements of Principle 10 into the relevant Criteria and Indicators of Principles 1 to 9.
Kuala Lumpur, 2 August – The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) welcomes Datuk K. Yogeesvaran as its new Chairman. The appointment comes into effect on 27 July 2018.
MTCC CEO Yong Teng Koon said, “We are very honoured to have Datuk Yogeesvaran as our new Chairman as he brings with him a great wealth of experience and expertise following a distinguished career with the civil service that spans over 37 years. Datuk Yogeesvaran began his career at the Economic Planning Unit (EPU) as an administrative and diplomatic service (PTD) officer in 1981. Among the positions he has held included Director, Knowledge Economy Division; Director, Industry Service Division; and Deputy Director-General (Macro) of the EPU before being promoted as the Secretary General for the Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities in August 2017 until his retirement in May 2018.”
Datuk Yogeesvaran holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from University of Malaya (1980), LLB from University of London (1994) and M.A. Economics from Manchester University (1996).
“With such a distinguished personality, MTCC will definitely benefit from Datuk Yogeesvaran’s knowledge and experience to advance and spearhead the sustainable forest management agenda in the country through the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme,” added Yong.
On his appointment as the Chairman of MTCC, Datuk Yogeesvaran said, “I thank the Minister of Primary Industries for the trust given to lead the MTCC. I count it a privilege to serve and will do my level best to contribute to our national sustainability agenda of ensuring that the precious forest resources that we have are being managed sustainably while at the same time continue to fulfil the growing market demands for green products.”
The new Chairman also recorded his sincere thanks and highest appreciation to the outgoing Chairman. “We are truly grateful to Datuk Himmat Singh for his able leadership, wise counsel and invaluable contribution during his tenure as MTCC Chairman. We wish him a happy retirement,” said Datuk Yogeesvaran.
Photo 1: Sapulut FMU 14 received its MTCS certification during Malam Hari Inovasi Jabatan Perhutanan Sabah 2018 – (Front row from left) SIRIM QAS Sdn Bhd Managing Director, Encik Mohd Azanuddin Salleh, presenting the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme Forest Management Certificate to Sapulut FMU Managing Director, Mr Norman Wong. Also present were (second row from left) MTCC CEO, Mr Yong Teng Koon; Sabah Forestry Department Chief Conservator of Forests, Datuk Sam Mannan; and Sabah Forestry Department Head of Forest Resource Management Division, Encik Mashor Mohd Jaini.
“Further uptake for Forest Management Certification In Line With State Government’s Pledge to Promote Sustainable Forestry”
Kuala Lumpur, 30 July 2018– The Sapulut Forest Management Unit (FMU), managed by Sapulut Forest Development Sdn Bhd (Sapulut) became the third FMU in Sabah to be awarded the forest management certification under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS).
The MTCS Forest Management Certificate was presented to Mr. Norman Wong, the Managing Director of Sapulut Forest Development Sdn. Bhd. on 20 July 2018 in conjuction with the “Majlis Malam Inovasi Jabatan Perhutanan Sabah” held in Sandakan. The Certificate was awarded by Mr. Mohd Azanuddin Salleh, Managing Director of SIRIM QAS International Sdn. Bhd., a MTCS-notified certification body and witnessed by Datuk Sam Mannan, the Chief Conservator of Forests, Sabah Forestry Department and Mr. Yong Teng Koon, CEO of the Malaysia Timber Certification Council (MTCC).
Commenting on the award, Mr. Norman Wong said, “We are very pleased to obtain the forest management certification under the MTCS. It has been our goal as a company to ensure that the forests within the 56,643 ha Sapulut FMU are being managed responsibly. Certification under the MTCS is a demonstration of our commitment to sustainably manage our forest resources so that they continue to play their vital economic, social and environmental roles.”
“MTCC would like to congratulate Sapulut Forest Development Sdn. Bhd. for this significant achievement. In undertaking this certification, Sapulut FMU has raised its own benchmark in forest management as MTCS certification mandates the FMU to continue comply with the stringent requirements of the Malaysian Criteria and Indicators for Forest Management Certification (Natural Forest) through annual surveillance audit. MTCC would also like to appreciate the support of Datuk Sam Mannan in promoting the implementation of sustainable forest management through certification in Sabah,” said MTCC CEO, Mr. Yong Teng Koon.
In addition to Sapulut FMU in Sabah, three other FMUs in Sarawak have recently been certified under the MTCS, namely Ravenscourt FMU, Kapit FMU and Linau FMU. To date, a total of 4.35 million hectars of forest areas have been certified under MTCS.
The MTCS is the first tropical timber certification scheme in Asia Pacific to be endorsed by the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), the world’s largest forest certification programme.
Congratulations to Linau Forest Management Unit (Linau FMU) for being awarded the Certificate for Forest Management (Natural Forest) under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) by SIRIM QAS International Sdn Bhd on 16 July 2018. The certificate is valid for three years subject to the FMU’s continued compliance to the requirements of the certification standard [MC&I(Natural Forest)] based on yearly surveillance audit.
Managed by Shin Yang Sdn Bhd, the FMU bearing Forest Timber License (FTL) No. T/3228is located in Linau, Sarawak; about 200 km east of Kapit town and 120 km south east of Belaga town. This FMU is the third FMU located within the Heart of Borneo (HoB) in Sarawak to be certified under the MTCS.
Auditor Training Course on Forest Management Certification under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS), 9 – 12 July 2018, Kuantan, Pahang
MTCC in collaboration with the Forestry Department Peninsular Malaysia (FDPM) organised an Auditor Training Course on Forest Management Certification under the MTCS on 9 to 12 July 2018 in Kuantan, Pahang.
The course was conducted to train prospective auditors so that they are familiar with and knowledgeable on the requirements of the Malaysian Criteria and Indicators (MC&I) to conduct forest management certification under the MTCS. The training course is mandatory for auditors to fulfil the competency requirements for accreditation of certification body by STANDARDS MALAYSIA.
A total of seven participants from two Certification Bodies and 12 participants from FDPM, Forest Department Sarawak and WWF-Malaysia attended the auditor training course. The course included a one-day mock field audit which was conducted at Lepar Forest Reserve (FR) Pahang FMU – a MTCS-certified FMU since 2001.
MTCC CEO Yong and guest speaker Ar Ahmad Asmadi from Ahmad Asmadi Architecture addressed some 132 students from the Faculty of Built Environment, Tunku Abdul Rahman University College (TAR UC) on 16 July 2018. The education talk was organized by MTCC to raise the awareness of the architecture students on the importance of sustainable forest management and how they could contribute towards this cause in the future through specifying the use of PEFC/MTCS-certified timber in their building designs.
The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) congratulates YB Teresa Kok on her appointment as the Minister of Primary Industries, and YB Shamsul Iskandar Mohd Akin as the Deputy Minister on 2 July 2018.
The Board of Trustees and management team of MTCC look forward to working closely with YB Teresa Kok and YB Shamsul Iskandar to further strengthen the implementation of sustainable forest management through the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS).
The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) announced the appointment of Mr Dzul Affandi Mat Noor as its new Public Relations and Marketing Manager with effect from 2 July, replacing Mr Rajan Samikannoo, Senior Manager for PR and Marketing, who retired on 30 June 2018.
Dzul holds a Bachelor Degree in Social Science (Communications) from Universiti Malaysia Sabah. He brings to the organisation 10 years of relevant experience in the PR and Communications field after having served Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM), Intellectual Property Corporation Malaysia (MyIPO) and the European Union Delegation in Malaysia.
In this role, he will be responsible for managing MTCC’s PR programmes and marketing initiatives to raise awareness on the role of the PEFC-endorsed Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) in promoting sustainable forest management (SFM) and increase the market acceptance of the MTCS-certified timber products both in Malaysia and internationally.
MTCC also acknowledged the invaluable contribution of Mr Rajan during his two and a half years tenure at MTCC and wish him a happy retirement.
MTCC is pleased to announce that Sapulut Forest Management Unit 14 (Sapulut FMU14) and Kapit FMU became the latest FMUs to be awarded the Certificate for Forest Management (Natural Forest) on 11 June 2018 following successful certification audits conducted by SIRIM QAS International Sdn Bhd. The Certificate is valid for three years, subject to continued compliance based on yearly surveillance audit.
Located in Tibow, Sabah, the Sapulut FMU14 managed by Sapulut Forest Development Sdn Bhd under a Sustainable Forest Management License Agreement (SFMLA) is the third FMU in Sabah to be certified under the MTCS.
Similarly the Kapit FMU, located in Kapit division and managed by Tanjong Manis Holdings Sdn Bhd under Forest Timber License (FTL) No. T/3491 is also the third FMU in Sarawak to be certified under the MTCS.
Located in Limbang Division of Sarawak, Ravenscourt Forest Management Unit (FMU) becomes the first Forest Reserve located in the Heart of Borneo (HoB) to be certified under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS).
The Certificate for Forest Management (Natural Forest) was awarded to Ravenscourt Sdn Bhd by SIRIM QAS International Sdn Bhd on 4 June 2018, with a validity of 3 years.
The effort by Ravenscourt Sdn Bhd is commendable and in line with the aspiration of the state government of Sarawak to implement forest management certification for all its long-term timber concession areas by 2022.
The Forests and People category welcomes shots of people responsible for the well-being of Malaysia’s forest resources such as foresters, forest rangers, forest researchers and indigenous peoples.
MTCC LAUNCHES PHOTOGRAPHY CONTEST TO PROMOTE
LOVE FOR NATURE AND FORESTS
Kuala Lumpur, 4 June 2018 – The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) is inviting all avid photographers to submit their best shots that capture the beauty and different faces of Malaysian tropical forests. Showcasing the picturesque landscape, beautiful fauna and flora, to people working in the forests, the contest aims to promote love for our nature and forests as well as raise awareness of the public on the benefits of sustainable forest management which helps to ensure the perpetuity of forests.
Returning after the successful inaugural contest last year, MTCC is once again collaborating with PCP Publications for the contest themed, “Experience Forest, Experience MTCS–PEFC”. The contest which is opened from 1 June to 10 September 2018 has included a new mobile category for submission of short videos.
“MTCC is proud to be organising the second edition of the contest after a successful event in 2017. Last year, we received encouraging response with submission of 837 high quality photos creatively depicting the splendour of Malaysian forests. We hope to continue cultivating the love for nature and forests among Malaysians and in the process promoting the importance of sustainable forest management,” said MTCC CEO, Mr Yong Teng Koon.
“This time round, we are encouraging more photography and nature enthusiasts to participate in both the photography and videography categories as we believe that visual arts have the capability to send strong messages on care for the environment to its audience,” Yong explained.
This year’s contest will have three themes for its camera category and one for the mobile videography category:
Category 1 – Forests and People; seeks images of people involved in the field of forestry responsible for the well-being of Malaysia’s forest resources such as foresters, forest rangers, forest researchers and indigenous peoples.
Category 2 – Forests and Forest Landscapes; this category welcomes any shots showcasing the natural beauty, diversity and uniqueness of forests by capturing the geological, climatological features and natural environment of Malaysian forests.
Category 3 – Forests and Fauna; seeks amazing images of animals in the wild including mammals, birds, amphibians or reptiles.
Category 4 – Mobile Short Video; requires participants to record the wonders of Malaysian forests in a two to three minute short video clip. Participants may use a variety of mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, drones, GoPros, or a combination of these mobile devices, to capture the sights and sounds of the natural environment.
“This year we have included the mobile category as we understand the power of mobile devices to convey important messages particularly among the younger generation. It is our hope that individuals can use their mobile devices in the best manner, in this case, to share the stunning beauty of our tropical forests. It offers great opportunity to anyone passionate about videography and nature to pick up their mobile device and start shooting videos of the natural environment,” explained Yong.
Creative photo submissions that meet contest criteria will be in the running to win a grand prize of RM2,000, a first prize of RM1,000 per category, two merit prizes of RM500 per category and five consolation prizes of RM200 per category. Meanwhile, the best three mobile video clips will receive a cash prize of RM500 each. In addition, all winners will also receive a photobook courtesy of PCP Publications. Participation is open to anyone of Malaysian nationality who has a passion for forests and photography. Participants may submit up to 10 images for each category and are required to upload their entries to a cloud storage system and email the link to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The prize presentation ceremony will be held at KLPF in October 2018, where the winning photos will also be exhibited for the viewing pleasure of professional photographers, photography enthusiasts, and the general public.
Our revised Sustainable Forest Management benchmark is now up for public consultation, and we are asking you to share your insights and knowledge to help us further improve this vital document.
Our Sustainable Forest Management benchmark is at the core of what we do. It provides the basis for the requirements that forest owners or managers must meet to achieve PEFC certification at local level. We therefore need to ensure that it continues to meet the demands and expectations – now and in the future.
From expanded social requirements to refined definitions within the forest, and even the opportunity to broaden the scope of sustainable forest management; together with our stakeholders we have moved this benchmark forward – and now we need to hear from you.
For many stakeholders, especially small-forest owners, the most significant change is the inclusion of Trees outside Forests (ToF).This will make PEFC certification accessible to the millions of farmers and smallholders that do not own or manage forests, but rather trees on agricultural or settlement land that are currently outside the scope of certification.
We have also expanded the social requirements, with greater inclusion of human rights, minimum standards for forest workers’ wages (both migrant and local) and the promotion of gender equality. Working conditions shall now be regularly monitored and adapted as necessary, and employment policies must include equal opportunities and non-discrimination.
The revised document also includes a refined definition of ecologically important forest areas, supports climate positive practices and forbids the reforestation or afforestation of ecologically important non-forest areas.
PEFC invites all interested parties to give their comments on our revised Sustainable Forest Management benchmark – PEFC ST 1003:201X.
This public consultation is one in a series of upcoming consultations as the PEFC Standards Revision process moves into its next phase. Over the next months, enquiry draft versions for several of our key documents under revision will be ready for public consultations. Stay tuned!
This consultation is open from 27 April until 26 June 2018. Please submit your comments through our online consultation tool.
MTCC as the Secretariat of the review process facilitated the formation of the multi-stakeholder Standards Review Committee (SRC). The SRC serves as the “Working Group/Committee” for standards development, and has the overall responsibility in the review of the MC&I(Natural Forest). The 15-member SRC comprises representatives from the economic, environmental and social (indigenous people and workers union) groups, and the relevant government agencies in equal numbers from Sabah, Sarawak and Peninsular Malaysia.
The formation of the SRC was initiated through a letter of invitation to the various stakeholders to nominate candidates to represent their respective interest group as member of the SRC was circulated by MTCC on 13 November 2015. Nominations received from a particular interest group were compiled and circulated to the stakeholders of the said interest group for voting in January 2016.
As a result of the nomination and voting process, the elected Members and Alternate Members of the SRC for the various interest groups is as shown as in the table below:
Elected Members and Alternate Members of the Standards Review Committee for Review of MC&I(Natural Forest)
Native Chief Saniban Bin Amphila United Sabah Dusun Association
Sagoli Olid Persatuan Suang Lotud Sabah (LOTUD)
Engrit Liaw Siau Fang Sabah Timber Industry Employees Union
Apolinar Tolentino Building and Wood Workers’ International
Omar Abdul Kadir Sabah Wetlands Conservation Society (SWCS)
Vitalis J. Moduying Environment Protection Department
Raymond Chiew Vui Leong Timber Association of Sabah
Stephen Chaw Zie Shing Sabah Timber Industries Association
Relevant Government Agencies
Musa Salleh Sabah Forestry Department
Hamidah Bujing Sabah Forestry Department
Elbson Marajan Pengeran Sarawak Dayak National Union
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ramy Bulan Federation of Orang Ulu Associations of Sarawak, Malaysia
Zaidi Buang Union of Forestry Employees Sarawak
Lo Kian Nyan Malaysian Trade Union Congress Sarawak
Dr. Melvin Gumal Wildlife Conservation Society (Malaysia Program)
Dr. Jason Hon WWF-Malaysia (Sarawak Office)
Ling Kiang Cheng Sarawak Timber Association
Ting Jack Hui Sarawak Timber Association
Relevant Government Agencies
Tessy Anak Nimos Ministry of Resource Planning and Environment, Sarawak
Abang Ahmad bin Abang Morni Forest Department Sarawak
Manolan Mohamad Orang Asal Rights Activist
Suhaimi bin Mahmud Jabatan Kemajuan Orang Asli (JAKOA)
Mohd. Najid Shauqi b. Mohd. Sahar @ Ishak Malay Forest Officers Union, West Malaysia
Abd. Halim b. Abu Malay Forest Officers Union, West Malaysia
Francis Cheong Fook Meng Wildlife Conservation Society – Malaysia Program
Balu Perumal Malaysian Nature Society
Goh Chee Yew Malaysian Wood Industries Association
Dr. Eric Ng Kok Leong Malaysian Timber Council
Relevant Government Agencies
Mohd. Rahim bin Rani Forestry Department Peninsular Malaysia Headquarters
Shashiah binti Abdul Karim Forestry Department Peninsular Malaysia Headquarters
The review of the MC&I(Natural Forest) which commenced in October 2015 was placed on hold by the 71st Meeting of the Board held on 7 March 2017 to align it with the review of the PEFC Sustainability Benchmark. The review process was resumed following the decision of the 75th Meeting of the Board held on 6 March 2018.
Prior to reconvening the Third Meeting of the SRC, the Secretariat contacted all Members and Alternate Members to re-confirm their membership in the SRC. The updated list of Members and Alternate Members is shown in the table below:
Members and Alternate Members of the Standards Review Committee
Relevant Government Agency
Mr. Musa Salleh Sabah Forestry Department
Ms. Hamidah Bujing Sabah Forestry Department
Native Chief Saniban bin Amphila United Sabah Dusun Association
Mr. Sagoli Olid Sabah Suang Lotud Association
Ms. Engrit Liaw Sabah Timber Industry Employees Union
Mr. Apolinar Tolentino Building and Wood Workers International
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Berhaman bin Ahmad Sabah Wetlands Conservation Society
Mr. Vitalis J. Moduying Environment Protection Department
Mr. Raymond Chiew Timber Association Sabah
Mr. Stephen Chaw Sabah Timber Industries Association
Relevant Government Agency
Ms. Tessy Anak Nimos Ministry of Urban Development and Natural Resources, Sarawak
Mr. Abang Ahmad bin Abang Morni Forest Department Sarawak
Mr. Elbson Marajan Sarawak Dayak National Union
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ramy Bulan Kelabit Land Council
Mr. Mohamad Ali bin Hj Yacob Union of Forestry Employees Sarawak
Mr. Andrew Lo Malaysian Trade Union Congress (Sarawak Division)
Dr. Melvin Gumal WCS – Malaysia Program
Dr. Jason Hon WWF-Malaysia (Sarawak)
Mr. Ling Kiang Cheng Sarawak Timber Association
Ms. Annie Ting Sarawak Timber Association
Relevant Government Agency
YBhg. Dato’ Lim Kee Leng Forestry Department Peninsular Malaysia
Mr. Othman bin Deris Forestry Department Peninsular Malaysia
Mr. Romani bin Mohamad Malaysian Orang Asli Development Association
YBhg. Dato’ Ajis bin Sitin Department of Orang Asli Development
Mr. Mohd. Najid Shauqi b. Mohd. Sahar @ Ishak Malay Forest Officers Union, West Malaysia
Mr. Samsul Kamal bin Buyong Malay Forest Officers Union, West Malaysia
Mr. Francis Cheong WCS – Malaysia Program
Mr. Balu Perumal Malaysian Nature Society
Mr. Goh Chee Yew Malaysian Wood Industries Association
MTCC joins the global communities in celebrating the United Nations -designated International Day of Forests on 21 March – a day dedicated to raise awareness of the importance of all types of forests and celebrate the manifold ways in which these forests sustain and protect us.
This global event aims to raise awareness of the importance of all types of forests and celebrate the manifold ways in which these forests sustain and protect mankind.
Themed “Forests and Sustainable Cities”, the 2018 celebration emphasises on “Let’s make our cities greener, healthier, happier places to live!” This tagline is most apt taking into account growing urbanisation and the fact that half of the world’s population today live in cities and the urban population is expected to surpass six billion by 2045. Just weeks ago, 165 nations congregated in Malaysia to participate in the Ninth Session of the “World Urban Forum” – a forum that is committed to finding solutions to create sustainable cities by 2030.
How would one define a sustainable city?
According to Kennedy et al, a sustainable city can only be one for which the inflow of material and energy resources, and the disposal of wastes, do not exceed the capacity of the city’s surrounding environment. In other words, for achieving environmental sustainability urban consumption must match or be below what the natural environment — such as forests, soil and oceans — can provide, and the resulting pollutants must not overwhelm the environment’s ability to provide resources to humans and other members of the ecosystem. Kennedy et al also highlighted the main challenge for today’s cities is to manage the heavy dependence on ecosystem services, which results in the depletion of natural resources and biodiversity and the efforts to mitigate and adapt to climate change, while prioritising public health and quality of life.
In general, environmental sustainability in the urban setting focuses on the roles of urban forestry and green spaces as carbon sinks, filter for air and noise pollution, improve local climate and in certain instances the provision of renewable energy as well as habitats and refuge for plants and animals, and in the process, helps to maintain and increase biodiversity in the cities.
From the perspective of MTCC, an independent organisation which was established to promote the implementation of sustainable forest management in Malaysia, the theme for celebration in Malaysia could well be worded as “Sustainable Forests and Sustainable Cities.” As reflected in tagline “Sustainable Forest, Sustainable Future”, MTCC holds the view that sustainable forest is all encompassing and key to Malaysia’s overall national sustainability agenda, including the sustainability of our cities.
One key aspect of the sustainability of city is inevitably the availability and affordability of clean water supply. Take the city of Kuala Lumpur as an example – undeniably the landscape of Kuala Lumpur has changed tremendously over the years. The KL Twin Towers are no longer the only high-rise towers around, with sky scrapers be it commercial buildings or residential blocks mushrooming and rising higher and higher into the air. Within each high-rise building, water pipes are laid and thousands of taps are fixed with expectation that water will flow from these taps upon the issuance of the certificate of fitness and keys to occupy the buildings or residential units. With regard to this matter, MTCC often posed this question in our interaction with our stakeholders, “Where do you think the water will come from to meet the increasing demand?” A very pertinent question that all concerned citizens should be interested in asking and knowing.
We need not elaborate the hardship of having no water supply and the woes it caused in our homes. The latest episode in early March where most of the areas in the Klang Valley were affected by a one-week water disruption is a case in point. The fear of water shortage is also reflected in the concerns frequently raised by many parties over the impacts of logging in Ulu Muda Forest Reserve, a water catchment forest in Kedah. Any disruption in water supply would affect the livelihood of some 4 million people and the economic activities in the State of Kedah, Perlis and Penang.
We definitely do not want what happened in Cape Town, South Africa to happen here. With dam levels predicted to decline to critically low levels, the city has announced plans for “Day Zero” in July 2018, when the Municipal water supply will largely be shut off, potentially making Cape Town the first major city to run out of water affecting some 4 million residents living within the city.
The benefits that forests provide to mankind have been too numerous to list. The provision of clean water is just one of them. Besides being the treasure trove of biodiversity for both plant and animal species, forests are also an economic resource and provide sustainable livelihood, energy, medicine and more importantly valuable ecosystem services. Our forests have been performing vital roles as carbon sink, excellent air filters, removing harmful pollutants and particles in the air and homes for the indigenous peoples.
Hence, MTCC advocates the importance of sustainable forest management to ensure the varied functions of the forests are protected for posterity and the well-being of the nation. In this context, MTCC is committed to promote the practice of sustainable forest management which includes the protection of water catchment forest through the implementation of the MTCS.
The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) recently participated in the 14th edition of Export Furniture Exhibition Malaysia (EFE) 2018, held from 9th to 12th March 2018 at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, to further boost awareness for MTCS certification.
Responding to rising demands for products with strong social or environmental credentials, MTCC believes this is the right time for furniture manufacturers to source responsibly so they will be able to convey to customers that the wood they are using originates from sustainability managed forests.
Last year, the nation’s wooden furniture export amounted to RM1.8 billion representing 80 per cent of the total furniture export earnings.
The Export Furniture Exhibition has been regarded by the furniture industry experts as one of Asia’s premier sourcing platforms. The event was presented by the Malaysia Furniture Council and organised by its wholly-owned company, EFE Expo Sdn Bhd. This year, over 15,000 buyers, importers, exporters, traders and visitors from over 140 countries attended the exhibition.
JOINT PRESS RELEASE BY SARAWAK TIMBER ASSOCIATION (STA) AND MALAYSIAN TIMBER CERTIFICATION COUNCIL (MTCC)
The State Government of Sarawak has announced the commitment for all long term forest timber licences to be certified by 2022.
In response to this announcement, Sarawak Timber Association (STA) and Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) jointly organised a workshop to identify gaps and opportunities in implementing forest management certification (FMC) in Sarawak from 5 to 6 February 2018 at Wisma STA, Kuching. The conduct of this 2-day workshop is timely as it aims to identify (i) gaps faced by long term forest timber licence holders in Sarawak to obtain forest management certification under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS), and (ii) opportunities as well as resources that are necessary in closing the gaps.
The workshop was attended by a total of 110 participants comprising STA members and officers from Ministry of Urban Development and Natural Resources (MUDNR), Forest Department Sarawak (FDS), Sarawak Forestry Corporation Sdn Bhd (SFCSB), Sarawak Timber Industry Development Corporation (STIDC), Harwood Timber Sdn Bhd (HTSB), Natural Resources and Environment Board (NREB) and Department of Environment (DOE) Sarawak.
The Acting Director of Forests, Tuan Hamden Haji Mohammad in his speech acknowledged the tremendous challenges involved for Sarawak in achieving full FMC by 2022. He iterated that the State will assist and support the timber industry and urged other relevant agencies to work together through State Steering Committee and FMC Technical Committee (FMCTC) to achieve this agenda.
The main gaps identified are summarized as (i) lack of expertise and capacity to fulfill the requirements of FMC standards, (ii) conflicting interpretation of native customary rights relating to lands and use of resources within the forest management unit (FMU) by different stakeholders, and (iii) differing requirements covering similar aspects in guidelines formulated by different agencies.
The Workshop noted that the Certification Masterplan for Sarawak is being formulated and proposed to include consideration on the resources needed to achieve the certification agenda in accordance with the timeline set. With regard to the draft Forest Management Certification Licence Agreement (FMCLA), the Workshop hoped that the concerns raised by the timber industry would be taken into account.
This workshop has provided a good platform for the timber industry, forestry and other related agencies to collaborate in achieving the State Government’s aspiration towards full FMC in Sarawak by 2022.
This standard defines the general requirements for national forest certification systems with group forest management certification.
This public consultation is one in a series of upcoming consultations as the PEFC Standards Revision process moves into its next phase. Over the next months, enquiry draft versions for several of the standards under revision will be ready for public consultations. Stay tuned!
Group certification is a mechanism through which groups of small-forest landholders can organize themselves, pool their resources and work together to achieve certification. This makes certification accessible for small-forest owners.
The key to successful group certification is to balance the need for robust implementation of our requirements with the need to be as resource efficient as possible.
What has changed?
Group certification works through a combination of internal and external auditing. As not every smallholder is audited, costs are substantially lower, helping make certification accessible. However, this means that internal auditing must work flawlessly.
The revised standard will provide an innovative framework for internal monitoring and auditing in certified groups with a chapter on ‘performance evaluation’. This will include improved requirements for internal auditing, such as risk based sampling groups and minimum sample size, as well as strengthening the management system of the group itself.
By strengthening the internal auditing process, we can be even more assured that all forest owners within a group are managing their forests in line with the requirements and small-forest owners can continue to benefit from affordable certification.
If you have any question about the revision process, please get in touch with our contact point:
Signature International Berhad Supports Sustainable Forest Practices
With MTCS Chain of Custody Certification
Kuala Lumpur, 26 December 2017 – Signature International Berhad, a Bursa-listed company, achieved a significant milestone with its subsidiary Signature Manufacturing Sdn Bhd becoming the first in the kitchen systems sector to obtain the Chain of Custody (CoC) Certification under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS).
Signature International Berhad designs, produces, markets and distributes kitchen systems under its flagship brand Signature Kitchen, the nation’s leading brand for kitchen cabinet and wardrobe.
Congratulating Signature Manufacturing Sdn Bhd on its achievement, MTCC CEO, Mr Yong Teng Koon said, “I am pleased to see a well-established brand like Signature Kitchen embracing sustainability requirements in the manufacture of its kitchen cabinets and wardrobes. The MTCS CoC certification is a demonstration of the company’s commitment to responsible sourcing and manufacturing, and its upholding of environmental integrity while meeting customers’ needs. In this regard, I truly hope that the business leadership of Signature Manufacturing Sdn Bhd will spur more manufacturers to join us in our efforts to promote sustainable forest management to protect our environment and natural resources through certification under the MTCS.”
The MTCS is a national timber certification scheme developed and operated by the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) that promotes sustainable forest management practices. Since its implementation in 2001, and as of 30 November 2017, a total of 4.12 million hectares of forest areas and 359 timber companies have been certified under the MTCS.
The MTCS Chain of Custody Certificate was presented to Signature Manufacturing Sdn Bhd by Puan Nor’ Afiza Saim, Senior General Manager for Management System Certification, from SIRIM QAS International Sdn Bhd, a MTCS-notified certification body at the Signature Kitchen Lifestyle Gallery in Kota Damansara.
The CoC certification allows Signature Manufacturing Sdn Bhd to label its kitchen cabinets and wardrobes containing timber materials as MTCS-certified products, as a mark of its compliance to the sustainability requirements under the MTCS. The qualified use of the MTCS/PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) label on its timber products brings added value and builds the brand’s credibility as the MTCS is also endorsed by PEFC, the world’s largest forest certification programme.
“Signature Kitchen builds trust with our customers by providing reliable quality products, in this case delivering sustainable kitchen cabinets that take into consideration the impact of our business on the well-being of forests. We are delighted to be awarded the MTCS certification as a testament of our commitment to promoting sustainable forest management and ensuring our products have less undesirable effects on the environment,” said Signature International Berhad Group Managing Director, Mr Tan Kee Choong.
“We congratulate and welcome Signature Manufacturing Sdn Bhd to the MTCS family. As the manufacturer of an established brand and having direct contact with end consumers, Signature Manufacturing Sdn Bhd has enormous influence to raise awareness of the public on the importance of sustainable forest management and timber certification. All of us must do our bit for the environment. It is therefore important that the awareness of consumers on this matter be heightened so that they will make conscious choices to purchase MTCS-certified timber products,” Yong concluded.
The Signature Group
Signature is built on a tradition of trusted and reliable product quality. Its humble beginnings in 1994 as a distributor and retailer of modular kitchen systems has enabled Signature to keep its perspective, while consistently striving for growth.
Signature’s portfolio thrives on maintaining a good balance between project and retail clients. Architects and designers from local and international developments appreciate the unparalleled versatility offered by Signature.
Signature International Bhd was incorporated and listed on Bursa Malaysia Securities Berhad in 2008; today it consolidates its position as the largest retail network chain for living space solutions in Malaysia, bringing together a world of lifestyle inspirations and innovative kitchen and wardrobe ideas that offer value to homeowners. Signature Manufacturing Sdn Bhd and Signature Kitchen Sdn Bhd are wholly owned subsidiaries of Signature International Berhad.
Contest Raised Awareness On Sustainable Management Of Malaysian Forests Among Photography Enthusiasts
Kuala Lumpur, 7 December 2017 – Albert Einstein once said, “Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.” Nature, or photos of it, inherently exudes a sense of peace and deep understanding found only in the presence of greenery, colourful wildlife, and blue oceans. While many of us tend to get caught up in the routine of city living, our instinct to draw close to nature in strenuous moments often seem to come almost naturally.
With the aim of inspiring people to appreciate mother nature and forest in particular, the Malaysian Timber Certification Council’s (MTCC) inaugural photography contest themed “Experience Forest, Experience MTCS–PEFC” mobilized participants to snap their best shots of the lush forests and its landscape, its wildlife and indigenous people as well as those contributing to preserving this heritage. The 21 winners of the Contest were announced and received their prizes at the Kuala Lumpur Photography Festival (KLPF) 2017 – the largest imaging event in Malaysia, on 25 November 2017.
“The MTCC Photography Contest provided a platform for photography enthusiasts to explore the beauty of nature through their camera lenses. In Malaysia, our tropical forests are especially precious because of its biodiversity and long-standing role as a support system for our society. As such, we wanted to give photographers an avenue to be in touch with nature and appreciate this precious resource through the hobby of capturing images,” said MTCC CEO Mr Yong Teng Koon.
“Most people are also unaware of the work done by forestry people to protect and care for our forests. We wanted the public to be informed of the efforts needed to manage our tropical forests and to appreciate the caretakers of this national heritage. Our collaboration with PCP Publications for the photography contest was fitting to communicate this message to the public, some of whom are already passionate about both nature and photography,” shared Yong.
A shot capturing a magnificent waterfall at the Royal Belum State Park in Perak as seen through a hollow log earned Abdul Hafiz bin Abdul Hamid the overall grand prize. The photo bagged him a cash prize of RM2,000.
“I am very touched and proud to have my photo chosen as the Grand Prize photo of MTCC’s inaugural photography contest. My hope is that this photo will be a source of inspiration to other photographers to produce many more creative images of local forests and introduce Malaysia’s natural beauty to the world,” said Abdul Hafiz who is a technical officer by profession.
First prize winners in each category received RM1,200 each. Two merit prizes of RM600 per category, and five consolation prizes of RM200 each per category were also awarded. In addition, all winners received a photobook courtesy of PCP Publications. The winning photos were displayed for viewing at the KLPF 2017; showcasing varying takes on Malaysia’s wonderful natural heritage.
Entries were shortlisted and judged based on several criteria, namely creativity, relevancy to the theme, originality and overall impact. The judging panel for the contest were made up of PCP Publications editor-in-chief, Jessica Chan; MTCC CEO, Yong Teng Koon; and Founder and Director at Nusantara Photography, Ashraf Saharudin, who himself is a nature-loving person with more than 10 years of experience in the photography industry.
Commenting on the contest submissions, Yong said, “We were very impressed by the quality of the entries as they truly captured our Malaysian forests in their raw beauty. The winning photos were particularly successful in depicting the splendor of our forests and, in our opinion, were able to instill in its viewers a sense of gratitude toward Mother Nature.”
Organised in collaboration with PCP Publications, the contest which was held from 5 July to 15 October 2017 garnered a total submission of 837 photos from 95 photographers across three categories.
Category 1 (Forests and People) required participants to capture images of people involved in the field of forestry responsible for the sustainable management and well-being of Malaysia’s forest resources, including foresters, forest rangers, forest researchers, auditors and indigenous peoples. Category 2 (Forests and Forest Landscapes) sought for shots capturing a forest’s natural beauty, diversity and uniqueness in form and structure. They included the geological or climatological features and natural environment of the Malaysian forest. While Category 3 (Forests and Animals) invited participants to capture images of animals in the wild including mammals, birds, amphibians or reptiles.
As the backbone of Malaysia’s economy, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) play an immense role in helping to push the country’s socio-economy growth and development. Participating in the 20th SME Annual Showcase & Conference 2017 (SMIDEX), the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) joined other industry players and government agencies to highlight on new growth opportunities for SMEs.
During the event, representatives from MTCC shared insights on how timber certification could benefit SMEs operating in the timber and timber-related sector. Timber certification scheme such as the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) has been proven to be an effective tool to enable timber and timber-related Malaysian companies create competitive market position and brand image for their products as well as helping them meet national and international procurement policies. SMEs can also showcase leadership on sustainability and communicate their commitments for good environmental practices to access markets which demand sustainable timber.
“SMIDEX 2017 has provided MTCC a platform to exhibit and promote the use and trade of certified timber, and increase SMEs interest to include products made from such materials in their business. We also had the chance to spread awareness on the importance of SFM to everyone who visited SMIDEX 2017,” said MTCC CEO, Yong Teng Koon.
SMIDEX 2017, the largest established SME showcase, was held at the Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre (MITEC), Kuala Lumpur from 15 to 17 November 2017. This year’s event was themed “Embracing Change, Enhancing Gain” and effectively featured showcases by SMEs, large companies and multinational corporations. SMIDEX 2017 attracted 316 local exhibitors and a total of 11,195 trade visitors.
Kuala Lumpur, 28 November 2017 – Timber concessions in Sarawak will be required to obtain forest management certification under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) to demonstrate that they are responsibly managed. The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) applauds this commitment made by the Deputy Chief Minister of Sarawak, Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan, at the State Assembly.
“Forest certification is an important instrument to promote and verify the implementation of sustainable forest management, thus safeguarding the environmental, social and economic benefits that forests provide,” explained Yong Teng Koon, Chief Executive Officer of MTCC.
“Furthermore, as the forestry and timber industries contribute significantly towards the socio-economic development of the country, it is imperative that Malaysia is able to demonstrate its forest sustainability credentials through certification,” added Yong.
Forest certification is gaining momentum as there is an increasing awareness and realisation among policy makers, businesses and consumers for the need to embed sustainability in procurement through responsible sourcing. This wave of green consumerism is expected to grow. Malaysian forest product manufacturers therefore must embrace sustainable practices and sourcing as an integral part of their business strategy and commitment.
Embracing forest certification will also assist Malaysia in achieving international commitments and national policies on environment, biodiversity, climate change and contribute towards its national sustainable development goals (SDGs).
“The announcement by the Deputy Chief Minister is therefore most encouraging and timely as it can act as a catalyst to ensure further uptake of forest certification in line with national sustainability agenda. We will work closely with stakeholders in Sarawak and provide the needed guidance on the requirements to obtain forest certification. Ultimately, it must be demonstrated that forest management practices are in compliance with the requirements outlined in the MTCS before certification can be granted,” concluded Yong.
The MTCS sets requirements for sustainable forest management certification in Malaysia, and has achieved PEFC endorsement in 2009. PEFC, Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification, is the largest forest certification system in the world.
MTCC Recognises Outstanding Achievements Of UMS And UPM Graduates
Kuala Lumpur, 27 November 2017 – The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC), in an effort to promote academic excellence and inculcate a love for forests amongst university students, recently presented Academic Awards to three forestry undergraduates from two local universities.
The 2017 Awards were won by Norazlin Binti Rosli and Lim E Yee, both from the Faculty of Forest, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM); and Lim Mee Chingfrom the Faculty of Science and Natural Resources, Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS). The award presented to UMS is named the Freezailah Forest Sustainability Award in honour of MTCC’s founding Chairman, Dato’ Dr Freezailah Che Yeom, who had led the organisation for 17 years.
First presented in 2016, the MTCC Academic Awards aim to recognise outstanding students from the forestry-related field of study who have distinguished themselves by demonstrating overall academic excellence and scholarship in their final year project thesis.
“This is the second year we are collaborating with UPM and UMS to recognise and reward young talents demonstrating outstanding academic achievement in forestry-related studies. Through the Awards, we hope to raise the awareness amongst students about the importance of sustainable forest management in Malaysia, and the role of the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) in championing this pursuit,” said MTCC CEO, Yong Teng Koon.
“Promoting sustainable forestry through the implementation of the MTCS is the core of MTCC’s work. MTCC accords great importance to collaborating with local universities to inspire more young people to embark on a career in forestry and forestry-related industries,” Yong elaborated.
The recipients of the MTCC Academic Awards were selected based on the undergraduate’s overall academic performance and the quality of their final year projects that focus on fields related to Sustainable Forest Management, Forest Certification, Natural Resources Management, Environmental Impact Assessment, Forest Plantation Management, Chain-of-Custody Certification, or Timber and Non-Timber Forest Products Utilization.
Commenting on the Award win, Lim Mee Ching from UMS said, “We cannot wait until our vital forest reserves are depleted to start conservation works. It has to begin now, and it is everyone’s duty to protect our forests. The MTCC Award serves as an encouragement for young people to play a more active role in promoting sustainable forestry. Additionally, it also influences my interest to consider a career in a forest-related industry.”
Excited and grateful to have won the award, UPM’s, Norazlin Binti Rosli, said, “This award helped me realize the important role of forestry education in safeguarding the future of our forests. Forestry education not only equips our youth with good basic knowledge and skills to sustainably manage our forest resources; the wider perspective of forestry education lies in its potential to change mind-sets and promote actions to ensure the long term well-being of our forests.”
“MTCC hopes that the Awards will inspire more students to take up forestry-related courses and spur them to take on greater responsibility in promoting sustainable forest management in Malaysia. Additionally, timber being Malaysia’s third largest export-oriented commodity, we hope that these students will be inspired to work in the forestry sector upon graduation and make a positive impact on the environment and society,” Yong concluded.
UPM scholars, Norazlin Binti Rosli and Lim E Yee, received a Certificate of Achievement and RM1,000 cash prize each. Meanwhile, Lim Mee Ching from UMS walked away with a Certificate of Achievement and RM2,000 cash prize.
Kuala Lumpur, 19 November 2017 – The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC), in an effort to promote academic excellence and inculcate a love for forest, presented the Freezailah Forest Sustainably Award to Lim Mee Ching, a final year student from the Faculty of Science and Natural Resources of University Malaysia Sabah (UMS).
The academic Award was presented to Lim Mee Ching by MTCC Chairman, Datuk Himmat Singh, at the UMS 19th Convocation ceremony. Lim received a Certificate of Achievement and RM2,000 cash prize.
First presented in 2016, the Freezailah Forest Sustainability Award aims to recognise outstanding students from the forestry-related field of study who have distinguished themselves by demonstrating overall academic excellence and scholarship in their final year project thesis. The Award was established in honour of MTCC’s founding Chairman, Dato’ Dr Freezailah Che Yeom, who had led the institution for 17 years.
MTCC CEO, Yong Teng Koon said, “This is the second year we are collaborating with UMS to recognise and reward young talent demonstrating outstanding academic achievement in forestry-related studies. Through this Award, we hope to raise the awareness of the students on the importance of sustainable forest management in Malaysia and the role of the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) in championing this pursuit.”
“Promoting sustainable forestry through the implementation of the MTCS is the core of MTCC’s work. MTCC accords great importance to collaborating with UMS to inspire more young people to embark on a career in forestry and forestry-related industries,” Yong elaborated.
The recipient of the Freezailah Forest Sustainability Award is selected based on the undergraduate’s overall academic performance as well as final year projects that focus on fields related to Sustainable Forest Management, Forest Certification, Natural Resources Management, Environmental Impact Assessment, Forest Plantation Management, Chain-of-Custody Certification, or Timber and Non-Timber Forest Products Utilization.
Commenting on the Award win, Lim said, “We cannot wait until our vital forest reserves are depleted to start conservation works. It has to begin now, and it is everyone’s duty to protect our forests. The MTCC Award serves as an encouragement for young people to play a more active role in promoting sustainable forestry. Additionally, it also influences my interest to consider a career in a forest-related industry.”
“MTCC hopes that the Award will inspire more students to take up forestry-related courses and spur them to take on greater responsibility in promoting sustainable forest management in Malaysia. Additionally, timber being Malaysia’s third largest export-oriented commodity, we hope that these students will be inspired to work in the forestry sector upon graduation and make a positive impact on the environment and society,” Yong concluded.
Kuala Lumpur, 7 November 2017 – Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) took part in the Kuala Lumpur Engineering Science Fair (KLESF) 2017 in an effort to create greater awareness and inculcate passion and love for the forests and their sustainability among the primary and secondary students. Interactive activities on practices of sustainable forest management (SFM) were carried out to engage the students in pursuit of this aim.
“Conserving our forests is critical in ensuring the future supply of natural renewable resources, protection of biological diversity and ecosystem services, sustainable human livelihood and in mitigating the growing threat of climate change. Young people should be made aware of the need and importance of conserving our forests, as they will be the ‘change agents’ and future leaders of our country,” said MTCC CEO, Yong Teng Koon.
“The inquisitive nature of young minds definitely makes it easier to instil green values and an appreciation of implementing SFM in Malaysia. Through our participation at KLESF, we were able to engage and reach out to many enthusiastic youngsters. We sincerely hope that they have benefited from participating in MTCC’s activities and have gained a better understanding and appreciation of the important roles of our forests,” Yong elaborated.
With a display of colourful posters and a model depicting the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) certification process, the booth attracted 400 students who were keen to learn about the MTCS and its role in promoting sustainable forestry in Malaysia. The word search on SFM in particular, generated good interest and active participation of the students.
MTCC believes that deeper knowledge and understanding of the values of forest management practices, taking into consideration their economic, social and environmental aspects can have positive impacts among these students on the need to safeguard our forest for the future. The MTCS ensures that our forests are sustainably managed through independent assessment of forest management practices and periodic audits of MTCS-certified forests and forest plantations.
“We also want to create awareness among the students on the importance of using sustainable materials such as certified timber products. Educating them young in making such conscious choices would definitely be a step in the right direction to ensure a greener future for all Malaysians,” Yong concluded.
The KLESF 2017 was held at the Mines International Exhibition and Convention Centre from 3 to 5 November 2017. The event attracted primary and secondary school students across the nation, allowing them to share and learn from one another about the application of science and engineering in their environment. It also aims to raise awareness on the role of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in socio-economic wellbeing and sustainable development.
MTCC Supports Malaysia’s Commitment to United Nations Sustainable Development Goals
Kuala Lumpur, 10 October 2017 – The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which comprises a set of 17 global goals challenge us to find ways to improve the lives of people today and in the future. Goal 11 of the SDGs focuses on ‘Sustainable Cities and Communities’, aiming to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.
The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) will be present at the International Greentech & Eco Products Exhibition and Conference Malaysia (IGEM) 2017 to be held from 11 to 13 October at Booth 2805, Hall 2, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, to showcase how businesses and consumers can support the implementation of this goal through the use of sustainable and certified timber.
In line with the theme of IGEM 2017, “Powering Green Cities”, MTCC advocates the utilisation of certified timber under the MTCS as a strategic move to promote the building of greener cities in Malaysia.
“The call for greener cities is more than ever crucial with over half of the world’s population living in cities today. As we strive to transform our cities into modern, sustainable living spaces, we must ensure that the development process, among others, embraces the use of sustainable materials at its core. Green cities are about building and living in a sustainable manner, which includes the use of sustainable material in our everyday lives. MTCC empowers specifiers, companies and individuals to do their part in this endeavour by making available MTCS-certified timber products,” said MTCC CEO, Yong Teng Koon.
To further advance this pursuit, MTCC encourages businesses that use and sell timber products to obtain the supply chain certification under the MTCS. Besides leadership in sustainability, these businesses play an important role of ensuring adequate supply of MTCS-certified timber products in the domestic market.
MTCC also urges consumers to join in this endeavour by consciously choosing and demanding for certified timber products in their purchases. “Increasingly, consumers are becoming more aware and environmentally conscious and want to make ethical, environmental-friendly purchases. Without a doubt, the demand by Malaysian consumers to purchase MTCS-certified products as their preferred choice would have a direct and positive impact on the management of our forests and the timber supply chain,” Yong concluded.
The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) participated in SPOGA+Gafa, Europe’s largest garden expo, for the seventh consecutive year to promote timber and timber-related products sourced from sustainably managed Malaysian tropical forests.
In addition to building greater awareness and access for MTCS-PEFC certified timber and timber-based products, MTCC took the opportunity to educate delegates including legislators, manufacturers, garden furniture companies, and the timber trade community at-large, about sustainable forest management practices in Malaysia, and how the national timber certification scheme, the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS), promotes a sustainable timber sector.
“Timber certication has proven to be an effective tool in helping Malaysian timber and timber-based products secure better access and presence in markets which place greater emphasis on sustainability. We very much appreciate this platform to further educate European Union buyers and consumers that choosing MTCS-PEFC certified timber and timber-based products is a positive choice for the environment,” said Yong Teng Koon, MTCC CEO.
According to MTCC, the German Federal Government is planning to develop a new guideline that will make sustainability certification a pre-condition for public procurements. As demand for sustainable material grows, timber certification like the MTCS will create positive market conditions for Malaysian timber and timber-based producers and exporters.
Over the years, tropical timber from Malaysia has enjoyed good reputation in the German market. It is often the choice of timber importers, traders and window manufacturers due to its sturdiness and resistance to damage from insects, fungus, and moisture decay.
Themed, ‘Come and Grow’, SPOGA+Gafa 2017 was held from 3 to 5 September 2017 in Cologne, Germany. This year, it attracted a total of 39,000 visitors from 113 countries. More than 2,131 exhibitors from 59 countries showcased their products related to Garden Living, Garden Creation and Care, Garden BBQ and Garden Unique.
The Second Meeting of the SRC held on 21-23 September 2016 at RH Hotel, Sibu, Sarawak and was attended by a total of 19 participants comprising Members, Alternate Members and Observers.
The SRC deliberated on the merging of MC&I(Natural Forest) and MC&I Forest Plantation.v2, where the wording of the Principle, Criteria, Indicator and Verifier of the two standards were considered before deciding on the wording for the merged standard. The Principle, Criteria, Indicator or Verifier which could not be streamlined were adopted separately for application for natural forest or forest plantation.
The outcome of the Second Meeting of the SRC was the preparation of the working draft of the MC&I(Natural Forest) incorporating the requirements of the MC&I Forest Plantation.v2 which will be considered by the next SRC meeting.
The First Meeting of the SRC was held on 12–14 April 2016 in Kuala Lumpur, attended by a total of 17 participants comprising Members, Alternate Members and Observers.
Being the first meeting, the SRC was briefed on the standard review process and its development to-date, proposed processes and timelines, rules on standard setting process based on the SSP3/2014 as well as the Terms of Reference for the SRC.
The Meeting discussed the approach for streamlining the MC&I(Natural Forest) and MC&I Forest Plantation.v2 and considered the comments received from the first public comment period that were general in nature, including a proposal for reorganisation of the various Principles of the MC&I(Natural Forest). The SRC noted the intent of the proposal and appreciated the efforts taken by the stakeholders in providing such a comprehensive comment. Nevertheless, the SRC was of the view that the existing structure of the MC&I(Natural Forest) is more comprehensive, with repetition of requirements needed for emphasis and therefore decided that the structure of the MC&I(Natural Forest) should be maintained.
As a result of the First Meeting of the SRC, the Secretariat prepared a Working Draft 1 of the MC&I(Natural Forest) which incorporated comments received from the first public comment period and the inclusion of the MC&I Forest Plantation.v2 standard for the consideration of the second meeting of the SRC.
Malaysian Timber Certification Council
C-08-05, Block C, Megan Avenue II
No. 12, Jalan Yap Kwan Seng
50450 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Tel: +603-2161 2298