Foundation laid for new research centre

James Kon

The Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT) through the Agriculture and Agrifood Department is looking to increase the capacity of veterinary laboratory services in the country – especially to meet international guidelines such as Environmental Health and Safety; International Standard of ISO/IEC 17025; and OIE Veterinary Services – by building a new Centre for Research, Analysis and Reference of Livestock Diseases at agriculture development sites in Terunjing.

Construction cost is estimated at BND6.5 million, under the 11th National Development Plan Project of the Title of the Livestock Industry Development Plan towards increasing production from BND106.8 million 2015) to BND300 million (2020).

Deputy Permanent Secretary at the MPRT Hajah Dahliana binti Haji Aliakbar officiated the foundation-laying ceremony for the new centre. Acting Director General of Public Works at the Ministry of Development, Acting Director of Agriculture and Agrifood and MPRT officers also attended.

After a briefing and the foundation -laying, Hajah Dahliana toured the construction site.

The construction will be implemented in phases. The first phase will be completed in August, and the second phase by October 2021.

Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism Hajah Dahliana binti Haji Aliakbar is briefed on the Centre for Research, Analysis and Reference of Livestock Diseases project. PHOTO: JAMES KON

The eight-month project, awarded to GR Technic Sdn Bhd, will also support the livestock feed monitoring programme towards the production of high quality and safe livestock-based products. It will also lend support towards the export of local products.

The existing veterinary laboratory services has been operating at the Brunei Agriculture Research Centre in Kilanas since 1988, offering 60 types of diagnostic examination and analysis tests, with services emphasising on the aspects of food quality control, safety of livestock products and analysis of livestock feed.

In line with the Agriculture and Agrifood Department’s aspiration to increase production of the livestock industry, the veterinary laboratory services also need to be enhanced – especially in supporting the export programme. Taking into account the limited capacity of the veterinary laboratory building, the move was necessary.