We had the pleasure of hosting the visit by His Excellency Takahashi Katsuhiko, Ambassador of Japan to Malaysia. He was accompanied by his wife, Madam Takahashi Mami, and his officers, Ms Masubuchi Kana (Diplomatic Officer) and Mr Yagai Yuki (Second Secretary of Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries & Environment).
The delegates were welcomed by Dr Yeo Tiong Chia, SBC Chief Executive Officer, Madam Margarita Naming, Deputy Chief Executive Officer and Madam Hajah Khaninah Binti Haji Ariff, Principal Assistant Secretary, Ministry of Education, Innovation and Talent Development as well as Dr Huang Hsiang Ting, General Manager, Chitose Laboratory Corp. Japan.
Mdm Margarita led the briefing at Laila Taib ethnobotanical garden and introduce interesting plants and its usage to the delegates. Meanwhile, Dr Huang briefed the delegates on the one of its kind Algae Cultivation Facility in South East Asia while highlighting the useful microalgae for biomass, feedstock, biofuel, food, and health supplement.
SBC's Natural Product Library (NPL) and Borneo scents as well as its potential for commercialisation were also showcased to the delegates.
To commemorate his visit, H.E Takahashi planted the Kemantan tree (Mangifera torquenda), a rare jungle mango that is native to Borneo. The species is listed as Vulnerably under the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species.
The visit culminated in a fruitful discussions and we look forward to continue fostering more collaborative relationship with the Japan counterparts.