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Vol 31, July 2019

In line with UMT's slogan "Ocean of Discoveries for Global Sustainability", to own RV-Discovery is a tremendous achievement for UMT as the national focus institution in oceanographic and maritime studies. The 35 meters long and 300 tonnes UMT’s research vessel was built in September 2008 by a local company and is capable of accommodating 12 crew members and 11 trainers or researchers at a time.

RV Discovery was officially launched on 30th September 2011 at Riyaz Heritage Resort & Spa (currently known as Duyong Marina), Pulau Duyong, Terengganu by Her Majesty Tuanku Nur Zahirah UMT’s Chancellor which was the Raja Permaisuri Agong at that time.

This research vessel was built specifically for oceanographic research purposes and equipped with the latest technologies as similar to the other foreign research vessels. This vessel has an ability to sail for more than 4,000 nautical miles with a full tank of fuel (39,800 L) at a maximum speed of 12 knots.

UMT is proud to be the only university in Malaysia to own the research vessel which primarily operated for marine and maritime research communities in the country. RV Discovery is also used as a teaching and training ship for the undergraduate students of Bachelor of Science (Nautical Sciences) and Bachelor of Science (Marine Sciences).
For research purposes, their area wet and dry laboratories onboard that can be used to sample pretreatment and sampling equipment installation space. The dry laboratory is also equipped with a table and a bench for discussion, sample processing, and data analysis.

In between 2011 and 2019, RV-Discovery has successfully accomplished several important scientific cruises in the South China Sea and Malacca Strait including the latest cruise in conjunction with LIMA'19.
By: Professor Dr Wan Izatul Asma Wan Talaat (; Ocean Governance Research Programme - Institute of Oceanography and Environment (INOS)

On April 4 and 5, 2019, the Malaysian Department of Statistics (DoSM), in collaboration with the United Nation Economic and Social Commission of the Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), organised the 1st National Ocean Accounts Workshop as Malaysia’s first step to venture into applying accounting principles as a platform to integrate environment, economic and social statistics. As one of the only two universities invited to contribute in this inaugural workshop, UMT was represented by Associate Professor Dr. Aidy @ Syawal Mohd Muslim, the Director of INOS, and Professor Dr. Wan Izatul Asma Wan Talaat, the Head of Ocean Governance Research Programme of INOS.

The Ocean Accounts Platform considers our natural resources or capitals as national assets providing multiple services to the country.  Sitting at the centre to the most biologically diverse and productive marine ecosystems on Earth, it is important for Malaysia to factor in all the services provided by the oceans. From fisheries to marine-based tourism, our ocean is a vital source of livelihood, employment, nutrition, and economic growth. Ocean plays an essential role in balancing our climate while marine and coastal ecosystems are the first line of defence from saltwater inundation and storms including tsunami. Yet, this natural marine environment is being threatened by the rampant marine pollution, ocean acidification and warming, destructive fishing practices, unstainable trade and transport, and illegal activities. These threats are compounded by inadequate coastal and marine governance thereby compromising the ocean’s capacity to nurture sustainable development. ESCAP’s Assessment of Capacity Development Needs of the Countries in Asia and the Pacific for the Implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14 reveals that the Asia Pacific region needs strengthening of technical capacity, coordination, data and statistics, awareness, stakeholder engagement, and partnerships, which require strong ocean governance.

Although vital information to monitor and evaluate progress towards SDG 14 is available, but it is fragmented across scientific domains, policy frameworks and institutions. Following that, ESCAP and UN Environment are leading a global effort to develop statistical guidance based on the System of Environmental-Economic Accounting (SEEA). The Ocean Accounts Platform will provide guidance on electing, prioritising and standardising data of national, regional and global importance. These data can be integrated to provide a comprehensive view and to achieve such, conversation among scientists, policymakers and statisticians are crucial as an integral part of ocean governance.

Since Malaysia is just embarking on having her own ocean accounts, the Straits of Malacca has been selected as the first case study taking into consideration the readily available existing scientific data. UMT, together with other leading universities, will be playing a vital role in providing these data from the marine coastal datasets on the Straits of Malacca.
Penyu Program was initiated by Dr. Yusof Shuaib Ibrahim from School of Marine and Environmental Sciences for the first time involving Universiti Malaysia Terengganu (UMT), Kagoshima University and Non-Profit Organization (HIBIKI) from 28th March – 24th April 2019. This program was aimed to strengthen the relationship between both universities which has been established since last 30 years ago and also to engage with the Kagoshima City Citizen. The programme was divided into academic attachment and cultural exchange activity. Three postgraduate students of UMT- Siti Rabaah Hamzah, Mona Mastura Baharudin, (School of Marine and Environmental Sciences) and Siti Syazwani Azmi (Institute of Oceanography and Environment) have participated in this program as the first batch. These students were supervised by three Kagoshima University lecturers (Prof. Dr. Masanori Sato, Prof. Ryuichiro Nishi, Dr. Hiroaki Tosuji) under different expertise.

This programme could not be accomplished without participation from Japan host family from Kagoshima City and also under the supervision of the programme director, Mr. Toru Kaminokado and President of HIBIKI Circle, Ms. Kyoko Muta which plays a big role in cultural exchange between Malaysia and Japan. The programme builds a strong bonding between both countries where both find similarities and differences in many aspects. Students get a closer first-hand experience as being one of them and create beautiful memories with the host family. During their stay with host families, they had the opportunity to gain massive socio-cultural experience, especially in learning about making Japanese food, wearing Japanese cloth (Kimono), Japanese sand art and learning language. The students were very grateful for the knowledge and experience provided by their families, supervisors and also for the warm hospitality and assistance given during their stay in Kagoshima. This program has been achieved and gave a positive impact on the participants on academic life and cultural exchange.
Our mailing address is:
The Chancellery, 
University of Malaysia Terengganu, 21030,
Terengganu, Malaysia

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Universiti Malaysia Terengganu · The Chancellery,  · Kuala Terengganu, Terengganu 21300 · Malaysia

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