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This paper is carried
out to estimate the economic value of Wetlands in most developing countries
such as Malaysia. This estimation is based on Contingent Valuation Method (CVM).
Wetlands are crucial ecosystems that offers benefits to all mankind. It provides
several goods and services to local communities. Malahsia is a country that
have widespread coverage of wetlands. Yet, large areas of Malaysia`s wetlands
have suffered ecological damages and environmental degradation. The major
threats to the sustenance of many wetlands in Malahsia includes; human
settlement, use of land due to construction of house, recreation, and tourism (Chape
et al., 2008). Moreover, growth of human population has increased demand for
shelter and thus, led to agricultural development and land expansion. These activities
led to loss in wetland environmental degradation. “In peat swamp forest in
Malahsia for example, about 44% of the total area was cleared for timber
logging, while 36% of the land was drained for agricultural activities”.

To this effect, numerous
measures have been taken to mitigate further wetlands damages, which includes
the establishment of national parks in and around wetlands. The establishment
of national park has protected area aiming to secure unique ecosystem. The International
Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN), founded in 1948 has
defined protected area as” an area of land and sea especially dedicated to the
protection and maintenance of biological diversity and of natural and
associated cultural resources and managed through legal or other effective
means” (IUCN, 1994). Nevertheless, research has proven that most tourism
development around wetlands has led to further reduction of wetlands resources owing
to visitor`s overcrowding, which required high cost of ecosystem restoration.

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value is very crucial in economic. Many ecosystem service benefits mankind either
directly or indirectly to markets, but the complete environmental cost of providing
these services is not ascertain in the market price signals. If an ecosystem services
is regarded as ‘free’, there will
be no incentive to value its use, and thus, undervaluing what people are willing
and able to give up for the preservation of the environment. Therefore,
lack of information about the economic value of wetlands have negative effect on
policy implications because it is regarded as public good which is non-excludable.
In order to prevent further wetlands degradation, it is imperative for park
managements to implement pricing policy by charging entrance fee to visitors of
the wetlands. It has been proved that such implementation is effective in reducing
the over crowdedness of visitation to national park and mitigating the
free-rider problem. For example, in 2008 a number of 9,645 visitors were
recorded, which has increased to 88,591 visitors in 2012. Therefore, the entrance
fee can help in financial resources that would be necessary for the conservation
of the recreational facilities and services that would yield the sustainability
of the wetland.

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