Time-consuming consultations reason abs bill tabled late

KUALA LUMPUR: Tabling of the Access to Biological Resources and Benefits Sharing Bill in the Parliament was delayed due to the time-consuming consultation process between the federal and state governments, the Dewan Negara was told today.

Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar (pix) said this being that most forest resources and bio-diversity cameunder the jurisdiction of the state government.

"We (government) conduct consultations from 2012 to 2016, at all levels and not only involve government agencies, but also the local community, including the indigenous community who have knowledge on the forest resources," he said when winding up the bill in the Senate.

Earlier, when tabling the bill, Wan Junaidi said Malaysia had yet to ratify the Nagoya Protocol because the ABS law had to be formulated at the domestic level first and the items outlined by the protocol had to be complied with before considering to sign it.

He said it was important that the ABS law be enforced to ensure the country benefited from the utilisation of the national biological resources.

The bill was then approved by the Dewan Negara.

The bill, which had been passed by Parliament, is aimed at regulating access to the national biological resources.

According to Wan Junaidi, the ABS law was also inline with Malaysia's aspiration to generate new wealth from biological resources as underlined in the 2016-2025 National Policy On Biological Diversity, New Economic Model and National Biotechnology Policy.

The sitting resumes tomorrow. — Bernama