ASEAN engineers to meet in KK

KOTA KINABALU (June 9): Institution of Engineers Malaysia (IEM) Sabah Branch IEM Sabah will be hosting the 42nd Conference of the ASEAN Federation of Engineering Organisations (CAFEO 42), from October 22 to 24, 2024, at the Sabah International Convention Centre here.

The event will convene engineering professionals from across the 10 ASEAN countries, providing a platform to address common challenges and exchange innovative solutions, said outgoing IEM Sabah Branch chairman, Ir. Chin Tet Fu @ Willy.

Chin in his speech at IEM Sabah’s 46th annual dinner yesterday pointed out that Malaysia has the privilege of hosting the event only once every 10 years.

“IEM Sabah is honoured to have been entrusted with hosting responsibilities in Kota Kinabalu. As the organising chairman of this prestigious event, I would like to thank our Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Hajiji Noor for the state government’s full support to IEM Sabah in organising this prestigious international event,” he said.

According to Chin, CAFEO 42 is not only a forum for engineering engagement but also an opportunity to boost Sabah’s economy through increased tourism, hospitality, and business activities surrounding the conference.

“We are expecting 1,500 conference participants and 200 exhibitors to gather at the CAFEO 42 conference. Besides bringing about RM5 million in value to the local economy, we are also targeting RM50 million in trade, research, and collaborative value between the government, academia and industries.

“I am confident that with full support from the State Government, CAFEO 42 will be a resounding success. As I pass the baton to the incoming chairman, Ir. Ts. Mohd Yaakob Jaafar, I am confident that under his leadership, IEM Sabah will continue to thrive and inspire positive change in our community,” Chin added.

Mohd Yaakob in his speech as the incoming branch chairman expressed his commitment to building upon the strong foundation laid by his predecessors.

“As we look forward to the next two years, we will be focusing on the advancement and visibility of engineers’ roles in Sabah’s development. We will prioritize continuous learning and professional development for our members by organizing workshops, seminars, and training programs.

“This will not only enhance individual careers but also ensure that our engineering community remains at the forefront of innovation and excellence,” he said.

Mohd Yaakob added that another key focus is in building strong partnerships with industry leaders, government agencies and academic institutions as these collaborations will foster a vibrant exchange of ideas, facilitate the implementation of cutting-edge technologies, and create opportunities for joint ventures that drive Sabah’s development forward.

Increasing public awareness of the critical role engineers play in society is also essential, he said, adding that initiatives will be implemented aimed at educating the community about engineering impact on everyday life.

Outreach programs in schools and universities will inspire the next generation to pursue careers in engineering, ensuring a steady pipeline of talent for the future.

“As we embark on this journey together, I invite all members to actively participate in our programs and initiatives. Your engagement, ideas and support are vital to achieving our success.

“Let us work together to elevate the engineering profession and make meaningful contributions to the development of Sabah,” he stressed.

IEM president Ir Prof Dr Jeffrey Chiang Choong Luin in his speech said IEM Sabah Branch had been continuously servicing the needs and interests of its members in Sabah and assisted the institution to uphold the social standing image of the engineering profession in the state.

Chiang said the commitment, dedication, hard work, leadership and sacrifices of the branch committee have been truly remarkable.

“Members of the Sabah branch committee juggle full-time jobs alongside their responsibilities, making their dedication all the more commendable. To both current and past members of the Sabah branch committee, I extend my heartfelt salute for your tremendous efforts,” he said in his speech which was delivered by IEM deputy president Ir. Yau Chau Fong.

According to Chiang, the theme of IEM Sabah branch’s dinner “Engineering Sustainable Growth, Pioneering the Future” aligned with his Presidential Address earlier in April which was “ESG as Catalyst for Engineering Evolution”.

“Engineering sustainable growth means using new technologies, sustainable methods, and smart policies to create a balanced and strong future. It’s about building systems that meet today’s needs without harming the ability of future generations to meet theirs.

“This shift towards sustainability is crucial for tackling big issues like climate change, limited resources and social inequality. Engineering sustainable growth isn’t just about new technologies; it’s about rethinking how we develop everything,” he said.

Chiang pointed out that it means looking at the big picture, considering the environment, the economy, and society.

“It encourages innovation and working together across all areas of society. By adopting sustainable practices now, we can create a strong and prosperous future for the next generations.

“In essence, engineering sustainable growth is the key to creating a future that is strong, fair and successful. It involves a balanced approach that combines new technologies, smart use of resources, protecting the environment, economic stability and social fairness.

“By focusing on sustainable growth, we can solve today’s problems and make sure future generations have the resources and opportunities they need to succeed,” he said.

Chiang expressed his gratitude to the State Government especially the Chief Minister for their immense support to IEM Sabah Branch in their preparing and also organising of the upcoming CAFEO42.

“Thank you also for the trust and support to the branch and I truly hope that the cooperation will continue well into the future. Rest assured that the members of IEM Sabah will continue to put forward our best effort to assist the State government achieve their goals and also contribute directly or indirectly to the socioeconomic development of the state,” Chiang said.