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Abstract: Paleogene Basins of Sabah, East Malaysia

Felix Tongkul

The Paleogene basins of Sabah comprise of two elongate parallel basins (the outer and inner basins) trending approximately northeast-southwest, separated by a relatively uplifted basement. These basins developed as a result of southeastward subduction-collision of oceanic lithosphere in front of the rifted continental block of southern China on an emergent oceanic basement in the eastern part of Sabah during the early Eocene. The outer basin, which is bordered by the continental block to the northwest, became the site for the deposition of the shallow to deep-water sediments of the West Crocker, Temburong, Kudat, and Meligan formations, whereas the inner basin, which is bordered by the emergent oceanic basement to the southeast, became the site for the deposition of the shallow to dee -water sediments of the East Crocker, Trusmadi, Sapulut, Kulapis, and Labang formations. The elongate geometry of both basins allowed sediments to fill axially from the southwest and laterally from the northwest and southeast until the early Miocene. The opening of the South China Sea during the middle Oligocene-middle Miocene resulted in the closure of both basins to form the Paleogene fold-thrust belt of Sabah.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90982©1994 AAPG International Conference and Exhibition, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, August 21-24, 1994