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Malaysia looks forward to the establishment of IPBES

PUTRAJAYA, 10 Nov 2008: Malaysia is looking forward to the setting up of the Intergovernmental Platform or Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES).

Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Douglas Uggah Embas said that with the establishment of such a panel, it would be easier for decision makers especially governments to decide any policy on the issues, including the steps that should be taken to avoid the loss of biodiversity.

“This is a scientific and social process to strengthen relations between knowledge holders on biodiversity and ecosystem services and government policy makers.

“We are supportive of the concept of the panel, and hope by the establishment the government can make more active decisions on issues of biodiversity and ecosystem services,” he told the reporters today.

Earlier, he opened the intergovernmental and multi-stakeholder meeting on the setting up of IPBES — a panel comprising scientists and knowledge holders to guide decision makers or governments around the world on issues relating to securing biodiversity and ecosystem services — at Putrajaya International Convention Centre.

Present were Education and Research Minister Valerie Pecresse of France and United Nations Environment Programme executive director Achim Steiner.

About 300 people from over 80 countries took part in the three-day meeting.

Embas said the meeting, a follow up from the review of the concept which took place in July, would also serve as an opportunity to gather as much inputs as possible to ensure that when the body is finally formed, it would be a body that would achive the objectives that had been laid out.

Steiner said the proposed IPBES would be more compelling as it would provide a lot of data on the issues and a network that goes beyond national interest.

“Questions would be formulated from the user’s perspective as well political and government perspectives because at the end of the day we need to provide relevant information to those who have to enact responses,” he said.

He said that unlike other institutions, the panel would also provide steps that governments should take.

“Data alone does not create options on how to act. You have to turn it into politically and economically viable actions for the government to act,” he said. — Bernama


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