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Biodiversity Forum for Business and Private Sector 2020

Kuala Lumpur  
7 January 2020

It was at its eighth meeting in Brazil back in 2006 that The Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) first recognised the role business plays in biodiversity. Businesses have participated in various biodiversity meetings and are involved in the development and implementation of national and international biodiversity strategies and action plans. As such, the COP has since promoted the engagement of business in the implementation of the Convention. Subsequently, decisions were made to facilitate engagement from the private sector and encourage businesses to adopt practices and strategies that contribute to achieving the goals and objectives of the Convention, as well as the Aichi Biodiversity Targets.

Furthermore, at the recent 13th meeting, it was further emphasised that there was a need to strengthen the mainstreaming of biodiversity in the sector – to encourage businesses to utilise various market-based and non-market-based tools, and for partnership initiatives to strengthen biodiversity considerations in business operations and promote behavioural change.

The meeting was in fact a Biodiversity Forum organised by DHI Malaysia, and supported by the Ministry of Water, Land, and Natural Resources (KATS), to gather inputs on this subject in Malaysia. KATS Minister Yang Berhormat Dato’ Dr. Xavier Jayakumar in his welcoming remarks had announced that the outcome of the forum would be highlighted at the upcoming ASEAN Conference on Biodiversity 2020 in Kuala Lumpur in March.

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Group picture of representatives from the Organising Committee and invited guests
(pic courtesy of DHI Malaysia).

 

More than 50 representatives from government agencies, academia, research institutions, and NGOs attended the forum. Cheryl Rita Kaur, Centre Head from MIMA's Centre for Coastal and Marine Environment participated in the forum as well. A number of presentations from the private sector and respective businesses were delivered, in addition to breakout sessions to discuss related gaps, needs, and challenges in Malaysia.

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Cheryl Rita Kaur (second from right) with representatives from different backgrounds and roles during the group breakout session.

 

The forum provided a unique opportunity to foster collaborations between the private sector and policymakers in government, to support effective implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and mainstreaming biodiversity conservation in business processes and practices.

Overall, the engagement is envisaged to drive the private sector to recognise, manage, and prevent biodiversity-related risks on the ground, besides harnessing new business opportunities.

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