IPOH: The government will study and redefine the context of socio-economic and environmental sustainability in its post Covid-19 economic recovery framework.
Finance Minister Tengku Zafrul Aziz said the study would encompass aspects of legislation, policies, education and awareness programmes to warrant a balanced development and the people’s well-being.
He said: “Many people consider sustainable practices as an unnecessary cost without realising that these can reduce far higher costs caused by external factors. Currently, the yardstick for a successful business does not take into account the impact or cost to the environment and society holistically. Awareness on this matter is still low and needs to be raised.”
In a statement issued after attending a 2021 Budget consultation here, he said a sustainable business should be strategically planned and implemented to create value for all stakeholders ranging from customers to suppliers at the consumer level to local as well as international investors.
He said the government is committed to ensuring that sustainability is emphasised in the Budget for next year.
“We have to understand and distinguish the connection between human and economic survival with environmental sustainability. Threats such as floods, landslides, disease outbreaks and so on can occur if we are not mindful.
“And the government has to spend more on rebuilding and protecting lives. Therefore, prevention is better than cure as it is usually simpler and more cost-effective,” he said.
Tengku Zafrul said today’s session was a dialogue with representatives of the palm oil industry in Ipoh and environmental NGOs at the Matang Mangrove Forest Reserve in Kuala Sepetang, Taiping.
The discussions centred on the need for a dynamic policy, resource support and potential collaboration in respect of the sustainability agenda in the Budget.