Pursue new technology studies to help transform Sarawak, students told

Abang Johari delivering his speech at the Yayasan Sarawak Excellence Award 2018.

KUCHING, August 4: The state government is willing to assist Sarawakian students to pursue high technology studies as this would produce a talented workforce and add value to its abundant natural resources.

Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said as the state pushed its digital economic agenda and march towards the 4.0 Industrial Revolution, it would need all the technical expertise it could get, particularly among locals.

“As long as I am the chief minister, I want to explore new areas of discipline to be studied because we (Sarawak) have resources.

“Then we can add value to our resources and strengthen our economic base, and that will uplift our standard of living,” he said at the Yayasan Sarawak Excellence Award 2018 ceremony at Swinburne University of Technology here today.

Abang Johari encouraged students to take up science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and related field of studies for their first degree locally as the state had its own accredited universities.

Upon completing their first degree, they could further their studies overseas as certain field of studies were not available in the country, particularly those related to new technologies.

“One such new technology is blockchain. You have to know how this technology work and how they connect people around the world. With it (blockchain), you can exchange information financially as well as transfer funds internationally and securely. This is blockchain technology, and this is the way business is being run nowadays.

“This is a known new discipline and Sarawak (government) is willing to fund those eligible to study this new discipline,” he said.

Abang Johari also urged students to look into the study of hydrogen as a fuel.

“We are now doing research on hydrogen economy. We (in the future) will not rely on fossil fuel anymore but hydrogen from water. Just imagine vehicles running on water. That is the new technology that we are doing research on at the moment through Sarawak Energy, and this is the new technology our students can pursue in the era of 4.0 Industrial Revolution,” he said.

Abang Johari receiving a birthday present from Azmi after a surprise birthday cake to commemorate his 68th birthday.

A total of 1,432 students received their excellence award from Yayasan Sarawak, including 1,135 SPM and 297 STPM high achievers.

Yayasan Sarawak director Azmi Bujang revealed that the foundation, in conjunction with this year’s excellence award ceremony, was also launching its Yayasan Sarawak smartphone app for students to check their loan application status as well as repayment of their loans with Yayasan Sarawak.

“The app can be downloaded for Android phones from Google App Store. For iOS (iPhone) users, expect the app to be available in Apple’s App Store in the near future,” he said. — DayakDaily