Budget 2023: DCCI hopes for special allocation to increase Dayak participation in agroforestry, agro-based industry

Dayak Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) logo.

KUCHING, Oct 4: Dayak Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) hopes the Budget 2023 will include specific and special financial allocation for the Dayak community to increase their participation in agroforestry, agro-based industry as well as education and training.

Its secretary-general Libat Langub said such an allocation is needed to assist natives, with most living within or near heavily forested areas, to participate in agro-forestry businesses in respect of the huge forested area.

“They can also participate in community replanting and reforestation especially in native customary lands and native territorial domain and also engage in carbon trading.

“We also hope for financial assistance and package for agro-based rural farming and rural natives operating small-scale businesses such as homesta, eco-tourism, cottage industries, livestock rearing and so on, which have seen their incomes badly affected for the past few years because of Covid-19 and the present high cost of living and increase in overnight policy rate (OPR) has caused businesses to suffer,” he said in a statement today.

With that, it is hoped that the budget would aggressively address issues relating to the high cost of living and loss of income among these rural dwellers.

Libat also raised that a specific budget is needed for DCCI and other Bumiputra chambers in Sarawak and Sabah focusing on capacity-building programmes to create more talents for businesses and industries in the two Borneo states.

“With such a budget, chambers such as DCCI can do much more to assist in upskilling and reskilling the talents in Sarawak to be locally and globally competent.

“It is our hope that the Federal government will view these chambers favourably as these chambers can be a catalyst for the nation’s economic growth,” he emphasised.

Libat pointed out that the allocation is important towards enhancing and elevating the socio-economic and educational participation of Dayak community within the Malaysian society so as to ensure that the native community could also enjoy similar economic status with the other progressive communities in Malaysia, therefore reducing the huge economic gap between the various communities.

“In this way, the special rights and status accorded to the natives of Sarawak in the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) and under the Federal Constitution will be realised and reclaimed,” he added. — DayakDaily