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Scientists helping to boost Langkawi`s ecotourism development

Leading scientists throughout Malaysia are making a valuable contribution to boosting Langkawi`s growing ecotourism industry…

Leading scientists throughout Malaysia are making a valuable contribution to boosting Langkawi`s growing ecotourism industry. Over 150 Malaysian scientists and students, and a number of volunteers are participating in the ten-day long, Langkawi Scientific and Heritage Expedition 2003 sponsored by the Langkawi Development Authority (LADA), the Forestry Department, Malaysian Nature Society (MNS), and Mutiara Burau Bay Beach Resort Langkawi.

The expedition from 10-19 April has set out to look at core areas of the environment particularly the fauna and fauna of the forest ecosystem and the marine life of the islands. Their investigations can ultimately contribute to the development of appropriate and sustainable tourism policies for the famous resort island.

Chairperson of the Organising Committee for the Expedition, Dato` Dr. Hashim Abdul-Wahab, said: There is a need to undertake a comprehensive inventory of the terrestrial and marine environments of Langkawi so that tourism planners have all the information at their fingertips to make appropriate environmental management decisions for the future.

The General Manager for Mutiara Burau Bay Beach Resort Langkawi, Mr. Abdul Razak Abdul Kadir, said: The Resort encourages the development of Langkawi`s nature-based and this study is essential for the appropriate development and management of the environment. The Resort is sponsoring all the accommodation and meals for the scientists, volunteers and support staff involved in the study.

Mr. Razak commented: Mutiara Burau Bay Beach Resort is not only a temporary home for many local and international tourists, but also for long term residents including the native wildlife. They have been living in and around the undisturbed coastal rainforests surrounding the Resort for centuries. Not only is it good to protect the habitat for the plants and animals but the comments from the Resort`s guests are very supportive of our efforts to maintain a resort, in the forest by the bay.

One of these guests, Mrs. Edeltrud Buergi from Lucerne, Switzerland, participated with 40 local MARA students in an MNS-conducted interpretative nature walk in the Resort today. She said: The walk was very informative and the work being conducted by MNS is excellent. I am here on Langkawi for a week with my husband and we just love the sun, the beach and especially the way the Mutiara Burau Bay Beach Resort has been left in a near natural state and as a home for the animals and tropical plants.

Interpretive signboards have been conveniently located around the Resort to assist in educating guests on the value and importance of the flora and fauna to the Resort`s environmental management plans.

The 150 cabana Mutiara Burau Bay Beach Resort Langkawi is situated on two of Langkawi`s most scenic beaches at the foothills of one of South East Asia`s oldest mountains, Mount Macincang. The Resort is managed by PERNAS Hotel Management (PHM) Sdn. Bhd. and owned by LADA Eco Tourism.

Mutiara Hotels and Resorts are managed by PERNAS Hotel Management Sdn. Bhd., a subsidiary of PERNAS International Holdings Berhad. The group has six properties located in key cities and resorts in Malaysia that include Burau Bay (Langkawi); Johor Bahru (Johor); Kuala Lumpur; Pedu Lake (Kedah); Penang and Taman Negara/National Park (Pahang).

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