Tiong Hiew King
Chairman of Rimbunan Hijau Group and Member of Parliament
Date of Birth: 1935
Place of Birth: Sibu, Sarawak
Malaysia's Rimbunan Hijau is the international logging
company whose activities have fuelled Asian construction for 30
years. Despite heated criticism from environmental groups, Tiong
Hiew King has become one of Malaysia's richest men. His international
empire now encompasses property development and media enterprises.
An ethnic Chinese, Tiong was born in Sibu, Sarawak in 1935.
His career in timber began in his teens; he tapped rubber and
later joined an uncle's timber company. Rimbunan Hijau
began as a logging company in 1975 and it now has international
logging activities in south-east Asia, North America, Russia,
and in Africa in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.
Rimbunan portrays itself as a responsible logger, but Greenpeace
and other organisations have criticised the company's operations
for both their scale and their methods. Tiong is well-known in
the Chinese-speaking world as a media magnate, if perhaps a reticent
one. He rarely grants interviews and his control of much of Malaysia's
Chinese press is seen as an attempt to shield Rimbunan's
activities from the limelight. In 1995, he acquired the Hong Kong-based
Ming Pao Group, extending Rimbunan's global reach. Ming
Pao publishes newspapers in Hong Kong and four North American