Entrepreneur Development


Talent Development

Empowering Local Talents: BeST 2.0 Sparks Biotech and Bio-Based Growth in Sabah and Sarawak

KUALA LUMPUR, 21 December 2023 – Malaysian Bioeconomy Development Corporation (Bioeconomy Corporation) through its BioAcademy initiative, will organise the BioAgrotech & BioPharmaceutical Employability and Entrepreneurship Specialised Training programme (BeST 2.0), commencing January 2024. As part of its strategic support for the growth and promotion of biotechnology and bio-based firms, including BioNexus Status and Bio-based Accelerator (BBA) companies, Bioeconomy Corporation champions BeST 2.0 as a pivotal talent-building platform within Malaysia’s biotechnology and bio-based industries.

This time, BeST 2.0 will be expanding to Sabah and Sarawak, responding to the growing demand for skilled talents in biotechnology and bio-based industries in these two territories. This expansion underscores the importance of bridging the local talent gap to support the sustained growth and development of biotechnology and bio-based companies in the Malaysian Borneo states.

Chief Executive Officer of Bioeconomy Corporation, Mohd Khairul Fidzal Abdul Razak stated, “BeST 2.0 will stimulate the growth and expansion of biotechnology and bio-based companies in Borneo by infusing more skilled, innovative local talents into the development of the biotechnology scene in these states. This fosters a symbiotic relationship where companies benefit from the knowledge and insights of local talents, leading to relevant and sustainable innovations.”

Launched in 2021 under the Twelfth Malaysia Plan and supported by the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI), BeST 2.0 is a six-month long programme designed to enhance the employability of graduates by equipping them with skills and knowledge of real-life industry-work experience at biotechnology, bio-based, agriculture/agro-food and bio-pharmaceutical based companies. BeST 2.0 promotes job creation via a hiring programme (place-train-hire), which emphasises securing job placements in chosen host companies. It incorporates a one-month specialised training that helps to ensure the graduates are well-equipped to meet the needs of these thriving companies and fill crucial skill gaps. Afterwards, the participants will undergo on-the-job placement with the host companies and be absorbed as permanent employees when the programme is completed, subject to satisfactory work performance.

Mohd Khairul added, “We aim to attract more participants from Sabah and Sarawak to join BeST 2.0 programme, anticipating further growth and expansion of biotechnology and bio-based companies in these regions. The first intake of BeST 2.0 in Borneo will target to place approximately 30 participants in 15 biotechnology and bio-based companies. This will not only
enhance the development of high-value biotech and bio-based products in the region but also address the local talent gap, contributing to the sustained growth and development of the industry.”

BeST 2.0 also recognises the importance of supporting the industry with a fresh and innovative talent pool to ensure that graduates can thrive in this fast-paced industry. By empowering talents with creative and innovative skills, the programme contributes to the companies’ ability to adapt, evolve, and remain competitive in a rapidly changing biotech landscape. Those nurtured through BeST 2.0 are strategically positioned to exert a substantial influence on the growth trajectory of the biotechnology and bio-based industry, particularly within the BioNexus Status and BBA companies. This serves to strengthen the competitiveness and expand the market presence of these companies both nationally and globally.

To date, BeST 2.0 has produced 254 graduates with an impressive 95% of participants securing stable employment. They have found positions not only within their host companies but also in various other organisations across the industry. Many of the BeST graduates have received better job offerings, with some even venturing into relevant career journeys overseas. Evidently, the programme has left a remarkably positive impact on participants’ skills and knowledge enhancement in the biotechnology and bio-based industry.

BeST 2.0 has completed four intakes and is currently in the pre-screening phase for intakes 5 and 6. These upcoming intakes aim to enroll 80 participants and are scheduled to commence in Quarter 1 and Quarter 2 of 2024 in Kuala Lumpur and Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, respectively. Subsequently, the upcoming intakes for Quarter 3 and Quarter 4 of 2024 will enroll up to 120 participants in the programme.

Bioeconomy Corporation proudly invites biotechnology and bio-based companies based in Sabah and Sarawak to participate as host companies in the upcoming BeST 2.0 starting January 2024. For those interested, apply through this link or contact the BeST 2.0 secretariat at or +6019 200 9367.