Updated on Sunday, 12 August, 2018 11:30:53 PM
The Timber Industry in Malaysia
Shorea sumatrana is a forest tree species belonging to the family Dipterocarpaceae. This large-sized timber tree is widely distributed across Sumatra, Thailand and Peninsular Malaysia, particularly in the east coast region. Frequently, it grows in low lying swampy habitat along river banks. Shorea sumatrana is locally known as balau sengkawang ayer. In Indonesia, it is called kayu meranti. It has small fragrant flowers with yellow petals and looks beautiful with its pink base. The stem is straight and smooth with small buttresses. The wood is grouped as heavy hardwood. The timber is used for heavy construction, such as housing poles and bridges.
Source : Forest Research Institute Malaysia.
The Sabah Forestry Department has called allegations of widespread illegal logging in the state “wild and baseless,” adding that the dissemination of such allegations would cause a drop in timber sales and cause Sabah’s forests to lose economic value:
Barcode for trees to curb illegal logging : http://thestar.com.my/lifestyle/story.asp?file=/2012/7/31/lifefocus/11287268&sec=lifefocus
Timber Companies Asked to Obtain Certification : http://www.tempointeractive.com/hg/nasional/2012/07/26/brk,20120726-419446,uk.html
East. Kalimantan Police Sound Alarm Over Illegal Timber Flow to Malaysia : http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/nvironment/e-kalimantan-police-sound-alarm-over-illegal-timber-flow-to-malaysia/542358
Timber corruption scandal
|The timber industry in
Malaysia is one of long-standing prominence, garnering much
attention as one of the economy’s core components of growth.
As Malaysia is well-blessed with an abundance of rainforest and land, the steady supply of trees and logs highlight the importance of this resource-based sector, ranking it among the likes of agriculture, oil and gas, mining and manufacturing.
Malaysia is among the world’s largest exporter of tropical logs, plywood, sawn-timber and furniture to international markets.
Specialists concur that this industry will not likely become redundant anytime soon.
As the world’s second largest industry after food, timber is a material with a wide range of uses, providing employment opportunities and raw materials with further flexible functions.
Malaysia is aggressively promoted downstream activities to become a manufacturer of higher quality and value-added products.
Malaysia Timber Industry Board (MTIB) believes that Malaysia can achieve a target of RM53 billion in the export of timber and timber related products by the year 2020.
So far, statistics from official records supported the direction of this segment’s growth.
In 2010 and 2011, Malaysia exported timber and timber products was worth RM20.52 billion and RM20.06 billion respectively.
Looking at 2011 performance, timber products export revenue clinched RM20.03 billion, contributing substantively to the national economic growth.
Sarawak collected RM7.08 billion from its timber export for the whole of 2011.
The highest export value within the past four years was in 2008 when the income recorded was RM7.91 billion. Sarawak's export revenue dropped to RM6.59 billion in 2009 but in 2010 it increased again to RM7.21 billion.
For the whole of 2011 Total Exports in Sarawak :
1) Logs 45.59%
2) Plywood 33.45%
3) Sawn Timber 10.67%
4) The rest were veneer, moulding, dowels, particle board, laminated board, flooring, woodchips, block board and other timber products.
The biggest market for Sarawak’s timber sector export for 2011 was :
1) Japan with 33%
2) India 16%
3) Taiwan 11%
4) Asia 10%
5) Middle East 9%
6) Korea 6%
7) China 5%
8) US and Europe 10%
Malaysia Export of Major Timber Products for January 2012
|Quantity||Value||% Change from 2011/2010|
|m3 '000||RM '000 million||m3 '000||Value|
|Builders' Joinery and Carpentry||-||73||-||-17.98|
|Wooden and Rattan furniture||-||487||-||-13.81|
|Source: MITB, Malaysia 2012|
WOODS OF SABAH
index of wood industries
Integrated Timber Complex, Pasir Putih, Tawau
Sawit Watch: an Indonesian network against oil palm plantations http://www.wrm.org.uy/bulletin/14/Indonesia2.html
Ricehusk Board (Papan Sekam Padi)
Photo above : Round Logs from Kalabakan
| Wednesday May 23, 2012
Malaysian Government to give RM3bil to expand forest plantation
Malaysian Government plans to allocate RM3bil to expand the country's forest plantation by up to 375,000ha by 2020 to ensure sustainable and a guaranteed supply of raw materials for the wood-related industry.
Wood-related industry was one of the
main revenue earners in Malaysia, generating a yearly export
income of RM21.7bil from 2006 until 2010 and creating 300,000
New timber tracking tools to bolster global fight against illegal logging : http://blog.cifor.org/8835/new-timber-tracking-tools-to-bolster-global-fight-against-illegal-logging/
Japan, United States and India remain Malaysia core export destinations. Malaysian furniture business segment needed to be more creative in order not to be left out from the booming industry. Local furniture makers should innovate their products to be competitive both in design and cost terms.
Control: Lessons Learned from 90 Years of Rainforest
|1. Malaysia will reiterate its commitment towards the principle
of sustainable development which has been endorsed by the international
community. While focusing on economic growth and development, Malaysia
government will give equal emphasis to promote conservation of its natural
resources and also to give adequate attention to social aspects as well. Despite
of the robust development in the last few decades, Malaysia still manage to
maintain about 59.5% of her total land mass under natural forest covers. Out of
this, about 43 % or 14.1 million hectares of Malaysia's natural forests have
been gazette by laws as Permanent Forest Estates (PFE) and other conservation
areas such as; national parks, and wildlife sanctuaries.
2. Forests worldwide are being threatened by uncontrolled degradation and destruction mainly because of unsustainable human activity as well as due to forest fire. Equally threatening is the issue of global warming and unsustainable consumption of natural resources. Many countries are faced with a serious conflict in deciding on the right balance between productive and protective functions of the forest. Information on full cost internalization of all functions and values of the forest would be useful to improve the present under estimation of the value of the forest as an option in land-use allocations.
3. Malaysia underscore the importance of good governance and proper management of natural resources as amongst the core tools for achieving sustainable development. Malaysia's commitment to achieve sustainable forest management (SFM) necessitates tremendous efforts on our part, including changes at the policy level as well as effectively implements those policies. Internationally, greater focus should also be given to the constraints on market access encountered by timber exports from the developing countries in the global markets. Without market access and remunerative returns, forests have little value and will loose its importance.
4. The IPF/IFF proposals for action represent significant progress and consensus at the international level on how to move forward towards sustainable forest management from policy dialogue to action. However, a number of specific areas have impeded the effective implementation of the IPF/IFF Proposals for Action, including the lack of financial resources, technical and institutional capacity, especially in developing countries, as well as a lack or even the absence of national legislation and institutions that are adequately equipped to implement existing conventions and other instruments.
Malaysian Timber is graded according to the Malaysian Grading Rules (MGR).
The Malaysian Grading Rules (MGR) is an internationally recognized grading rules for which Malaysian Timber Industries Board is the Grading Authority. Grading ensures the elimination of defects and blemishes which can affect the strength and performance of timber.
Malaysian government in order to further enrich forestry resources, fast growing timber species such as Meranti tembaga, Merawan and Sesenduk will be planted.
The planting of high value trees such as teak and trees for paper and pulp is encouraged.
These are very few true softwoods of commercial significance in Malaysia. None are durable in the tropics. The main difference between the timber of Hardwoods and Softwoods (conifers) is the absence of vessels (pores) in Softwoods.
These include all the relatively light weight and soft timbers which range in density from about 400 to 720 kg. per cu. m. at 15 per cent moisture content. They are the 'general utility' timbers of Malaysia, comparable with the general utility timbers in temperate climates; the latter however, are mainly softwoods (conifers).
In addition to general utility purposes many of these Light Hardwoods are excellent for high class joinery work, cabinet making, furniture, decorative panelling, etc. Although not naturally durable in tropical climate, some are quite durable in temperate regions. Provided that proper precautions are taken against attack by wood destroying agents, the Light Hardwoods as a whole make very satisfactory timbers for general construction even when used in tropical climates.
These are moderately heavy to heavy constructional timbers ranging in density from 720 to 880 kg. per cu. m. at 15 per cent moisture content. Some of these timbers are heavy and strong enough to be classified as 'Heavy Hardwoods' but under tropical conditions they lack sufficient natural durability when exposed to the weather or in contact with the ground unless they are properly treated with preservative before use. Most of them however, are naturally durable in temperate countries where climatic conditions are less conducive to the activity of the destroying agents.
These are heavy or very heavy constructional timbers ranging in density from about 800 to 1,120 kg. per cu. m. at 15 per cent moisture content. They are naturally durable as they contain within their tissues some toxic materials, e.g. alkaloides or other substances repellent to wood destroying agents and can therefore be safely used without preservative treatment even in positions exposed to fungus or termite activities; the sapwood of these timbers, however, is not durable.
|Malaysia is richly endowed with tropical forest resources and is one of the
world's leading producers and exporters of tropical timber. The vast forest
resources have enabled the country to establish processing industries geared for
the world markets.
Forests of Malaysia
The total forested land in Malaysia is estimated to be 20.56 million hectares, with 5.82 million hectares in Peninsular Malaysia, 4.46 million hectares in Sabah and 10.28 million hectares in Sarawak. Permanent Forest Estate (PFE) covering 14.33 million hectares or 43.6% of Malaysia's total land area of 32.86 million hectares has been earmarked. Of this, 3.49 million hectares are classified as Protection Forest where no logging is permitted and 10.84 million hectares as Production Forest where sustainable timber harvesting is carried out. Besides the PFE, 2.12 million hectares are dedicated to national parks, wildlife sanctuaries and nature reserves.
Of the 20.56 million hectares of forests 87.5% or 17.99% million hectares are dipterocarp forests, 1.74 million hectares are fresh-water swamps and 0.63 million hectares are mangrove forests. The dipterocarp forests are characterized by the predominance of the family Dipterocarpaceae with many species of the genera Anisoptera (Mersawa), Dipterocarpus (Keruing), Dryobalanops (Kapur), Hopea (Merawan & Giam). Shorea (Meranti & Balau) and Parashorea (Gerutu).
There are altogether 2,650 tree species in Malaysia, of which 408 species have been identified as commercial species which can be utilized for a wide range of applications.
In Malaysia, the conversion of forests for agricultural purposes has been undertaken with environmentally-sound land use practices and carried out systematically under the country's 5-year development plan.
Most of the cleared forests have been replaced by tree crops such as rubber,
oil palm and cocoa. These crops covering 4.8 million hectares have contributed
to the greening process making a substantial part of the country (77.2%) still
under forest and tree cover.
|The National Forestry Policy was formulated and officially adopted in 1978.
This Policy was revised in 1992 to take into account the conservation and
sustainable utilization of biological diversity, the participation of local
communities in forestry and the enhancement of ecotourism. The salient feature
of the National Forestry Policy are as follows:-
i. to dedicate as Permanent Forest Estate sufficient areas strategically located throughout the country in accordance with the concept of rational land use under four major functions, namely:-
• Protection Forest
• Production Forest
• Amenity Forest and
• Research and Education Forest.
ii. to implement a planned programme of forest development through forest regeneration and rehabilitation operations;
iii. to promote efficient harvesting and utilization within the production forest and to stimulate the development of appropriate forest industries commensurate with resource flow;
iv. to increase the production of non-wood forest produce through scientific and sustainable management practices;
v. to provide for the conservation of biological diversity and areas with
unique species of flora and fauna;
|Implementation of the National Forestry Policy is aimed to ensure:
• the sound climatic and physical condition of the country;
| • the safeguarding of water supplies and soil fertility;
• the minimizing of damage by floods and erosion to rivers and agricultural
|Harvesting and rehabilitation
Forest harvesting in the PFE is always carried out by selective cutting as opposed to clear felling. Only 7 to 12 trees, out of 500 trees per hectare, are allowed to be removed per harvest. These trees must measure at least 45 cm in diameter at breast height. Directional felling of marked trees is strictly adhered, to reduce damage to the remaining trees. A minimum of 32 trees, at least 30 cm at breast height, are left behind for the second harvesting cycle.
In the moist tropical climate, regeneration after harvesting occurs quite naturally. However, where necessary, rehabilitation of the harvested forests is carried out to enable young trees to achieve faster growth. Enrichment planting is carried out at areas poorly stocked with preferred species.
Plantation programmes have been implemented to supplement timber supply. Today, about 196,846 hectares of plantation forests have been established mainly in Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah. Moreover, increasingly, agricultural tree crops has supplemented wood supplies from the natural forests. Wood from rubber trees is a case in point. In recent years, Rubberwood also known as Heveawood has emerged as a popular timber species for furniture and is well regarded as a renewable resource and environment friendly material. Research and development is being conducted to utilize oil palm trunks and fronds for the manufacture of reconstituted panels.
|Malaysian Criteria and Indicators
Malaysia is intensifying its efforts towards achieving sustainable forest management and will ensure that the ITTO Guidelines for Sustainable Management of Natural Forests and its Criteria for the Measurement of Sustainable Tropical Forest Management be fully realized. In this regard, the National Committee on Sustainable Forest Management in Malaysia was established in February 1994 at the Ministry of Primary Industries, Malaysia. The National Committee has formulated a total of 92 activities to operationalise the ITTO's 5 criteria and 27 indicators on sustainable forest management at national level. Recognizing each individual state in Malaysia as a Forest Management Unit (FMU), the National Committee had also identified a total of 84 activities to be implemented at the forest management unit level under ITTO's Criteria and Indicators. Against each activity identified, the Forestry Department of Peninsular Malaysia has also formulated management specifications (benchmarks) for its effective monitoring and evaluation. Management specifications have also been formulated by the respective Forestry Departments of Sabah and Sarawak. All these management specifications need to be realized by the year 2000 in accordance with Malaysia's commitment to the ITTO's Year 2000 Objective.
International cooperation in forestry
The viability of the downstream processing industry is important to the wood-based sector as a whole. Towards this end, the Ministry of Primary Industries, will continue to play its role in formulating appropriate policies and strategies to ensure the viability and competitiveness of the wood-based industry in the next millennium. In this context, the active participation by the timber industry towards government programmes is a step in the right direction in the spirit of Malaysia Incorporated.
Challenges to the marketing of Malaysian wood products are indeed many and diverse. Changes in the market scenario brought about by globalization, liberalization, technology advancement, policy changes as well as labor and raw material shortages have to be constantly dealt with. Nevertheless, with the constant improvement undertaken by our manufacturers and continuous support from the government for the industry, Malaysian timber industry, particularly the furniture sector, will continue to grow from strength to strength.
Encouraged by Malaysian government's policy of promoting an export-led manufacturing sector as the engine for growth, Malaysian wood-based industries have in recent years adopted aggressive business strategies to expedite globalization and penetration into non-traditional markets.
The Malaysian timber industry exports registered an all-time
high at RM14.9 billion in 1998, thus maintaining its position as a major foreign
exchange earner for commodity products. It is gratifying to note that downstream
processing activities in particular the furniture sector has been developing
rapidly. Furniture exports (wooden & rattan) in 1998 reached RM3.3 billion and
are expected to exceed RM4.0 billion by the end of 1999.
MAJOR WOOD PROCESSING MILLS IN MALAYSIA 1998
Source : Forestry Department Malaysia
Voluntary "donation" subject to income tax:
A voluntary payment may change in character and be subject to tax. This can happen if it is given repetitiously, as consideration for services rendered, in return for any benefit of any kind, or if the amount is used in a business activity to sustain business operations.
Inland Revenue Board (IRB)
Chief executive officer
Datuk Seri Sabin Samitah
Thursday June 7, 2018
In line with the Government's policy to develop downstream processing of timber, the production of value-added products such as mouldings, joinery and furniture have been actively promoted. Fiscal incentives such as the Pioneer Status, Investment Tax Allowance, and Abatement of Adjusted Income For Export are provided to promote the growth of such industries.
The various sectors of the industry must continuously upgrade
their product quality in order to improve their position in the market. In line
with this objective, the government encourages the adoption of high technology
as a means to overcome the increasing cost of raw materials and shortage of
skilled labor as well as increasing production capacity. In addition, the
government supports market diversification, and off shore sourcing of raw
Government Departments in
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