Palangka Raya, C Kalimantan (ANTARA) - Orangutans are a key species playing an important role in the health of tropical forest ecosystems, expert staff to the Central Kalimantan Governor, Yuas Elko, stated here on Thursday.

"(They support) forest regeneration through the fruits and grains they eat. They (help to) spread them as they explore all corners of the forest," he stated on behalf of Central Kalimantan Governor Sugianto Sabran here on Thursday.

He made the statement at the National Seminar "Managing Endangered Orangutans in the Sebangau National Park" at the Palangka Raya University (UPR) here on Thursday.

According to Elko, maintaining the orangutan population and protecting their habitat in Sebangau National Park is increasingly important, not only for the mammalian species' sustainability but also for the preservation of the forest ecosystem.

He considered the seminar forum to be strategic and expected to strengthen the joint commitment and efforts to preserve biodiversity in Central Kalimantan, especially in Sebangau National Park.

"We hope that this national seminar will provide a space for scientific discussion that produces various ideas to support and optimize efforts to preserve the rich biodiversity in Sebangau National Park and Central Kalimantan, especially orangutan species," he stated.

Elko believes that the orangutans' existence will be a magnet for local ecotourism and further increase the popularity of Sebangau National Park.

Hence, protecting orangutans can also boost the tourism sector while driving the economy and the welfare of the surrounding community, he affirmed.

This national seminar was part of the Sebangau Biodiversity Fest 2024, which was initiated by the Environment and Forestry Ministry, the Sebangau National Park Agency, and other related parties.

This activity was officially opened by Deputy Minister of Environment and Forestry, Alue Dohong.

Dohong stated that the number of orangutans in Sebangau National Park increased from six thousand to 8,600.

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Translator: M Hidayat, Kenzu
Editor: Aditya Eko Sigit Wicaksono
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