The 2018 MTCP Global Geopark Planning & Development Workshop was held from 16 to 20 September 2018 at the idyllic island of Langkawi, Kedah.
The workshop was participated by 10 international and 6 local participants consisting of officers from relevant government and private agencies from multiple countries.
The Global Geopark Planning and Development Workshop was designed to provide insights on theories, strategies, elements, and issues related to Geopark management; to enhance knowledge and skills in the various Geopark Management approaches and techniques; and to enhance awareness on Geopark management among the participants.
The workshop was officiated by the Secretary General of the Ministry of Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change (MESTECC) YBhg Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Azhar Haji Yahaya.
In his speech, YBhg Datuk Seri stated that the transition of Langkawi Island into a global geopark is the next step for the island’s growth from its humble beginnings as a fishing island; the island is currently home to 900 geo-sites and 3 geo-forest parks.
YBhg Datuk Seri highlighted the announcement of Jerai Geopark as the second of its kind in Malaysia; Jerai Geopark’s distinctive geology, geoarcheology and biosphere is hoped to be able to further boost Malaysia’s tourism.
During the five-day course, participants were subjected to workshop sessions and field trips for them to not only learn about the theoretical aspects of geopark planning, but also to experience the beauty of geopark sites.
At the end of the course, the participants were prompted to construct and present their own geopark proposal.
The participants have shown that they understood the needs and characteristics for a place to be developed as a geopark.