Tapping on creative industries to boost economy



CREATIVE industries will help to boost Penang’s tourism image and transform existing cultural and heritage assets into revenue for the state in the long term, says state executive councillor Yeoh Soon Hin.

He said with correct initiative, he was optimistic that art and culture would not lose its historical roots, nor be pushed aside and forgotten for years to come.

“I will be focusing on growing the creative industry and making it a sustainable part of Penang’s economy as well as maintaining Penang’s unique identity,” Yeoh, who is the state Tourism and Creative Economy Committee chairman, said after visiting the Balik Pulau Craft Incubator Centre in Sungai Rusa today.

“We hope to portray the importance of art and its generous effects in contributing to society, while developing and retaining Penang’s talent pool to sustain the state’s creative industry and economy.

“It is crucial to provide access and therefore we would like to expose more future generations of Penang’s residents, as well as the tourists to this art of batik-making with different types of workshops and factory tours.”

From left : Ashwin, Yeoh and Lim looking at the batek preparations.

Yeoh also emphasised the importance of the batik industry to the state’s tourism. He and other guests present were briefed on batik preparations during their visit.

On the state’s tourism, Yeoh said he believed it would grow once the Covid-19 cases are reduced.

“For the time being, the cases are still going up while conditional movement control order (CMCO) has been implemented in Klang Valley, Selangor and Kuala Lumpur areas.

“It takes time to recover,” he said when asked by reporters on the current tourism sector.

Also present were Penang Convention and Exhibition Bureau (PCEB) chief executive officer Ashwin Gunasekeran and Batek-Lah Collection proprietor James Lim.

Story by Edmund Lee
Pix by Chan Kok Kuan