Tuesday July 17, 2012
BIMP-EAGA sees promising outlook for food market
KOTA KINABALU: The joint discussion between the Business Council of Palawan and the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East Asean Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) Malaysia Business Council concluded over the weekend in Manila with a promising outlook for the food market.
Council chairman Roselan Johar Mohamed said the two-day high powered discussions raised many issues of interest to both sides of the Sulu seas, resulting in several understandings agreed in principle.
“A successful seafood exporter in Palawan is willing to guide and support seafood producers in Sabah to promote their exports to the European Union and the United States.
“Exports to both territories have been very difficult and demand high level of hygiene and work discipline,” he told Bernama.
He said Palawan was willing to lend creditable expertise and guidelines to help local producers increase their exports to the United States and the European Union.
“It is good to broaden our export markets so that we are not too dependant on any established sector. If there is any weakening in any given sector, there is always the availability of other sectors to cushion the impact,” he added.
Roselan said BIMP-EAGA had always been around and would be around for many more years to come because “it was still relevant to our people”.
“We are no sleeping dogs and we are not Nato (no action-talk only). The old BIMP-EAGA has now revolutionised itself to a new hyper-active conglomerate designed to increase trade, promote tourism and encourage investment within its member countries.
“We are going to open-up all our borders and welcome legitimate travellers and tourists to see for themselves what we have here in Sabah and Sarawak.
“Visitors bring money into our country and money that are well spent on our transportation system, hotels and lodging houses and restaurants,” he said.
Roselan said the richer visitors may even decide to invest in the country and all it took was “our smile to welcome them with an open heart and open arms”.
“I have heard stories of small-time Sabahans becoming successful when they treat our visitors well and later rewarded with an agency appointment to new businesses as well as procuring agents,” he said.
He said enterprising Sabah and Sarawak sea-food producers may contact the Sabah Bumiputera Chamber of Commerce for details of the arrangements discussed. — Bernama