: The Department of Marine Park Malaysia is set to drown 14 Class P-A speed boats from the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) around the waters off Pulau Perhentian.
The move is to increase the number of scuba diving destinations at the island which has been touted as among the 12 most beautiful islands in the world in conjunction with Visit Malaysia Year 2014.
Marine Parks department director Dr Sukarno Wagiman said various objects and replicas which had been sent down to the sea bed have created an interesting landscape which has the capability of attracting local and foreign tourists alike.
However the construction costs for this artificial reef is very high.
“For now we are still hoping we will obtain enough allocation for the sinking of these boats to create an artificial reef for diving purposes. We need about RM30,000 to sink each boat,” Dr Sukarno said.
Among the other objects used to create interesting landscapes on the sea bed include buses and foreign fishing boats which had been placed in the waters off Pulau Redang four years ago.
Three automated teller machines (ATM) which had been placed in the waters off Pulau Perhentian had also created a splendid garden of coral with abundant colourful reef fish, a virtual paradise for diving and snorkelling activities.
Dr Sukarna is also urging donations for items to be added in the creation of artificial reefs and the involvement of the public sector to realise efforts in conserving marine parks nationwide.