This commentary by Kasturi Nathan and Phang Oy Cheng explores the potential and challenges of transitioning towards a circular economy for Malaysia. It also highlights how our government have a crucial role to play in lowering the hurdles for a circular economy and creating a playing field that favors solutions, products, and business models that are more sustainable.
The circular economy is more than just recycling; it presents a more holistic solution whereby economic growth and benefit is decoupled from the consumption of finite resources and the production of waste in the first place. The case for the transition towards a circular economy is anchored in enhanced economic value - that is, gross domestic product (GDP) and employment.
Considerable barriers still exist preventing widespread adoption of more circular practices in Malaysia, including economic incentives, accounting rules, and regulation that often favor conventional linear solutions and business models. But real examples have proven that economic and social enterprise benefits exist.
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