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KUCHING (Jan 16): Sago and Nipah Development Board (SDNB) will be established to assist the government in its planning to ensure the future viability and sustainability of the sago and nipah industries in Sarawak, said Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom.

“This will lead to the increase in productivity, adoption of new technologies and promote orderly development of upstream and downstream sectors, particularly in executing and promoting of these commodities and its related activities for the smallholders in Sarawak,” said the Modernisation of Agriculture and Regional Development Minister in his second reading of the Sago and Nipah Development Board Bill, 2022 at the State Legislative Assembly today.

He also said the SDNB, to be under the purview of his ministry, has the primary objective to promote, facilitate and develop the sago and nipah industries as a new frontier to maximise economic returns and increase smallholders’ income.

He added it will also formulate strategic objectives, policies and priorities for the orderly development and administration of both sago and nipah in Sarawak.

“When passed, its areas of jurisdiction cover all activities in the upstream and downstream of the sago industry and nipah industry including the planting of sago and nipah palms, the processing and utilisation of sago and nipah, the production of sago starch and nipah sap and the  manufacturing of sago products and nipah products and its derivatives, and any services related thereto.

“All these activities will be regulated by the implementation of registration and licensing scheme and enforcement activities,” he said.

On the sago industry, he said the cultivation of sago in Sarawak can be traced back to early 1880s and was among the key agriculture trading commodities of Sarawak since then.

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State Farmers’ Organisation Sarawak | PPNS
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