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SABAH LOOKING TO INVEST ON R&D IN SWIFTLET BIRD'S NEST INDUSTRY



30 JAN 2021


KOTA KINABALU: The State Government is planning to set up a Sabah Swiftlet Board this year to regulate swiftlet bird's nest industry.


Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries Datuk Jeffrey Kitingan said, the new authority body would also be responsible to carry out research and development (R&D) to add values to the swiftlet bird's nest products in Sabah.


"The board’s R&D department would need huge investment from the government but is necessary for the survival and growth of the industry in Sabah.

“We cannot depend only on our raw materials. One kilogram of good quality swiftlet bird’s nest could fetch up to RM5,000 but processing the raw product and would give operators RM15,000 or more per kilogram.


“Downstream activities also create more high-paying jobs for our people, regardless of age or gender. This is what we want for the people of Sabah,” he said in a statement today.


At the same time, Kitingan who is also the Sabah Deputy Minister said the government will be working closely with the private sector especially experienced industry players to build their processing plants in the State.


“In terms of market, we need to expand our horizon also and not just focus on one market like China.


My wish is to make Sabah’s swiftlet bird’s nest an international brand,” he said.


This he said is one of the government's focus on finding effective and efficient ways to improve the people’s economy already hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic.


“We need to resuscitate the local economy. Too many people have lost their jobs, or their wages are cut in half.


“One of the ways to replace these lost jobs is by expanding existing economies such as supporting the swiftlet bird’s nest industry,” he asserted.


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