In Malaysia, the wood industry and design are developing more and more thanks to the Italian university system. The design school of the Politecnico di Milano (Poli.design) has in fact signed with the Sarawak Timber Industry Development Corporation – a paper and forest products company based in Sarawak, Malaysia – a memorandum of understanding for the development of the wood industry in Sarawak, one of the three areas belonging to the Malaysian territory of the island of Borneo.
The collaboration, promoted by the Embassy of Italy Kuala Lumpur and the Polytechnic of Milan, is based on the research and development of wooden materials available in the State of Sarawak: here it is possible to find over two thousand species of wood. The agreement also provides for the organization of international exhibitions of young Malaysian designers. With the signing of the memorandum, Poli.design has the task of supporting the transfer of know-how and the training of local designers in the furniture sector.
In this way, Sarawak will be able to increase its commercial presence on European markets: to date, less than 1% of exports from the Malaysian state of Borneo go to our continent. On the other hand, the agreement will allow Italian entrepreneurs to develop their presence in the country, which is already seeing constant growth. In fact, in Malaysia, the number of Italian companies has doubled in recent years, going from 50 companies registered in 2012 to over one hundred today.
The collaboration between the Politecnico di Milano and the Sarawak Timber Industry Development Corporation not only represents a tangible sign of the world fame enjoyed by Italian design, but it is also a consolidation of economic and cultural relations with the Southeast Asian area.