KUALA LUMPUR (April 3): Durian and oil palm planter PLS Plantations Bhd has entered into a partnership agreement with China's largest food manufacturer Cofco Food Import Co Ltd to develop and implement food security initiatives.
PLS said the two companies will exchange information and knowledge on food security initiatives, collaborate on food security research and development, and jointly invest and implement food security projects.
They will also engage in resources, technology and expertise sharing, and conduct joint training and capacity-building activities related to food security initiatives, PLS said in a statement.
It said the scope of the agreement includes agriculture development, food reserves, food safety, poverty alleviation, food production, food imports and food pricing.
PLS chairman Tan Sri Nazir Razak said it is vital for the company to collaborate with industry players like Cofco to address food security issues, while strengthening the nation’s food security.
“By combining our expertise in food production with Cofco’s extensive resources and experience in the downstream segment, we aim to create a sustainable, efficient and environmentally responsible food ecosystem for the future.
“We will look for innovative solutions and technologies to address critical challenges such as climate change, soaring fertiliser costs and ever-increasing demand for food,” he said.
Nazir is confident that the partnership will lead to further collaboration and expansion into other plantation activities, such as forest plantation, cash crops as well as other agricultural and aquacultural activities, to be identified as part and parcel of national food security enhancement.
Meanwhile, Cofco food import general manager Wu Yiran said the collaboration with PLS offers an invaluable opportunity to tackle food security challenges together.
“This partnership addresses domestic food security concerns, and fosters mutual growth and development for China and Malaysia, as we work collectively towards achieving self-sufficiency in food production.
"In doing so, we aspire to create a model of international cooperation demonstrating how shared goals and collaborative efforts can effectively alleviate global food security concerns and benefit all parties involved," she said.
On Aug 24 last year, PLS and Cofco established their partnership through the Malaysian durian and durian product distribution agreement. The partnership grants the state-owned Chinese company the exclusive rights to promote, off-take and distribute PLS's durian and durian products in China.
PLS shares closed unchanged at 95.5 sen on Monday (April 3), valuing the group at RM417.65 million.