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BANGI: Malaysia is committed to addressing the issues of global concerns, especially climate change, and ensuring continued protection and assessment of the various environmental impacts in the Antarctic continent, said Sultan of Terengganu, Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin.

The Sultan, also the patron of the Sultan Mizan Antarctic Research Foundation (YPASM), said Malaysia’s global ranking of 36 out of 200 countries in the publication of scientific papers, is a testament to its achievement and contribution towards understanding this earth.

“Nevertheless, I would like to emphasise that for research to thrive in Antarctica, we must have a policy framework that includes an annual allocation to support our Antarctic research endeavours continuously.

“With the rising interest of research in climate change related to Polar Regions, sustainable research funds are crucial to strengthening our Polar Research Programme,” he said in his opening speech when officiating The 10th Malaysian International Seminar On Antarctica (MISA) here today.

Also present was Natural Resources and Environmental Sustainability Minister Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad and Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Deputy Vice-Chancellor Industry and Community Partnership Affairs Prof Datuk Dr Norazah Mohd Nordin.

The Sultan further said that the data and evidence produced by the Malaysian Polar Researchers would support policymakers in making informed decisions in drafting policies to adapt and mitigate the threat of climate change.

The Sultan said increased support by the government would send a clear message to the private sector on the importance of Polar Regions and encourage them to contribute to the mission.

“Our mission in combating climate change and protecting Polar Regions will fail without buy-in from the public.

“Thus, awareness and education on the climate change related to Polar Regions are important to draw support from the corporate sectors, youth, school children and the public which, without a doubt, will turn into climate action,” he said.

At the event, Sultan Mizan also presented a research grant of RM800,000 to seven researchers through the Smart Partnership Initiative collaboration between YPASM and 10 local universities.