HUTAN - is a non-governmental organization based in France, initiated efforts to develop and implement an innovative approach in conserving orang-utan in Sabah, Malaysia since year 1998. HUTAN started the Orang-utan Conservation Project in Kinabatangan (KOCP) in collaboration with the Wildlife Department and established a Conservation centre at a small village located in Sukau Kinabatangan floodplain area, which is now better known as the Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary.
Wildlife Department discovered holistic approach or comprehensive which were developed and implemented by HUTAN have made the results of scientific studies as a basis for reducing the problems or conflicts between wildlife and humans (HWC). The school offers a career under KOCP project and HUTAN also provide public awareness about the importance of wildlife conservation in general and in particular the Orang-utan while aiding local communities in economic development projects that are consistent with the conservation of natural resources.
These smart partnerships have a positive impact on the government's efforts to conserve Orang-utan populations, particularly in Lower Kinabatangan area and the state in general. Among the achievements of the collaborative work between HUTAN and the department includes the inventories research of Orang-utan population estimations throughout the state in 2008 by using the "nest counting", trial use if "aerial-bridge" by Orang-utans, parasite studies, diet and dietary behaviour studies and also social relationships and the wildness of the Orang-utan. The results of these studies have been able to help the department to develop conservation strategies and action plans for Orang-utans that have been presented and discussed in Orang-utan Colloquium 2009 and "Species Action Plan Workshop" 2010.
Smart partnership is not beneficial only to HUTAN and the Department but through the monitoring activities of Orang-utan, has provided an opportunity for a company (Red Ape Encounter) owned and fully controlled by local communities in Sukau to have a unique and exclusive tourism package which has brought economic resources through tourism activities.