Launch of Mount Miriam Cancer Hospital and Roche Malaysia Cares Programme

Posted in Dari Meja Ketua Menteri

Speech by Yang Amat Berhormat Tuan Chow Kon Yeow, Penang Chief Minister

at the Launch of Mount Miriam Cancer Hospital and Roche Malaysia Cares Programme

Thursday, 28 March 2019

Mr. Dean Liu
Chairman, Mount Miriam Cancer Hospital

Ms. Joan Lim–Choong
Chief Executive Officer, Mount Miriam Cancer Hospital

Mr. Vinod Narayan
Business Unit Director, Roche Malaysia

Dr. Ho Kean Fatt
Clinical Director, Mount Miriam Cancer Hospital

Members of the media

Ladies and gentlemen

Firstly, allow me to take this opportunity to thank Mount Miriam Cancer Hospital and Roche Malaysia for inviting me to launch the Mount Miriam Roche Cares Programme. I would like to congratulate both organisations for embarking on this unique corporate responsibility programme that benefits needy cancer patients. I am pleased to note that this progamme enables breast cancer patients from low income groups to gain access to innovative treatments at an affordable price. The Healthcare Performance Measurement and Reporting System report stated that 50% of breast cancer patients in Malaysia could have been saved if they had the right treatment at the right time.

The Malaysian National Cancer Registry Report 2011 showed that female breast cancer accounted for 32.1% of all cancers among females in Malaysia. The registry also listed Penang as the 3rd highest incidence recorded for new cancer cases every year with 11 out of 100 Penangites testing positive. Breast cancer recorded the highest incidence.

Prevention, early screening, testing and treatment are most important to ensure cancer patients have a higher chance of survival and even cure. Programmes such as Mount Miriam and Roche Cares can help to improve on cancer survival rates in the state and country.

This programme, moreover, fully meets the Penang state government’s initiative to harness the 4P model of public, private, professional, and people partnership to carry out projects with minimal use of public funds.

We had to implement this model as the Federal Government has categorized Penang as a developed state. At the 2019 Federal Budget announcement, Penang did not receive a huge allocation of federal funds. We understand the current financial situation of the country as the Federal Government had asked for three years to improve on our national financial position. We hope our innovative 4P model will enable our state to develop more effectively despite the challenges facing us.

I welcome private financial partnerships such as this initiative by Mount Miriam and Roche Malaysia which will enable the Penang state government to effectively allocate our resources to meet the healthcare needs of the people. This will also ease the congestion at our public hospitals as those who are eligible can now apply for funds through this programme.

It is not very often we hear about non-public hospitals serving the community without taking any profit. I am very proud to have in Penang, Mount Miriam Cancer Hospital which has served the community for over 40 years as a not-for-profit hospital. In addition to not taking profits, Mount Miriam had also gone the extra mile to establish the Needy Cancer Patient Fund since 2006. I would like to urge private corporations in Penang to contribute to this fund. It will help cancer patients get new innovative treatments that are not available in public hospitals or if they have been turned away from other private hospitals due to financial difficulties.

Since the programme only targets 20 patients for now, I hope with additional funds, this can be increased to cater to more cancer patients. Such financial assistance can reduce the patients’ and their families’ mental stress while undergoing treatment. I was also informed that as of today, there is already one patient who has been enrolled for this programme. Congratulations to both Mount Miriam Cancer Hospital and Roche Malaysia for achieving this.

This fund, which I understand is a co-pay mechanism under Mount Miriam and Roche Corporate Responsibility Programme, will see both organisations subsidizing the cost of Trastuzumab for the treatment of HER2 positive breast cancer at a much lower price. This will definitely benefit a lot of women who urgently need this treatment.

The federal government has also launched two national health insurance schemes – Skim Perlindungan Nasional B40 (MySalam) and Skim Perlindungan Kesihatan (PeKa). MySalam aims to provide insurance for the B40 household income group in the event they develop 36 critical illnesses while PeKa is screening for a projected 800,000 of B40 Malaysians aged 50 years and above for non-communicable diseases. This demonstrates that the Government at the federal and state levels are continuously looking into the needs of the rakyat and providing solutions for a better quality of life.

I look forward to a more effective public-private partnership especially in identifying innovative funding solutions and schemes. The health sector requires the synergy of the public, private, professional and people to come together to make a more meaningful contribution in healthcare delivery. I hope the partnership between Mount Miriam and Roche Malaysia will serve as an exemplary corporate responsibility initiative for other pharmaceutical companies and healthcare organisations to follow suit.

With that, I now officially launch the Mount Miriam Roche Cares Programme for HER2-positive breast cancer patients.


Posted in Dari Meja Ketua Menteri





27 MARCH 2019


YB Yeoh Soon Hin

State EXCO for Tourism Development, Heritage, Culture and Arts

YB Zairil Khir Johari

State EXCO for Public Works, Utilities and Flood Mitigation cum Tanjung Bungah State Assemblyman

Mr Jason Chong

CEO of Cornerstone Partners Group

Mr Jamie Mead

Regional General Manager Malaysia, Hilton Worldwide

Mr Jonathan Freddy P. Bagang

Director of Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MOTAC), Penang Officer

Mr Zulkifly Md Said

Deputy Director General (Planning), Tourism Malaysia Promotion Board

Investors and Shareholders

Business Leaders

Member of the media

Ladies and gentlemen

A very good evening to all of you.

First of all, I would like to extend my heartiest congratulations on the occasion of the 1st anniversary celebrations of the DoubleTree Resort by Hilton in Penang.

Since becoming Chief Minister last May, despite the many challenges that we face in government, I am constantly reassured by the strength and impact of the hospitality and tourism industries here in Penang. I think no one doubts that Penang is a key destination that contributes to the appeal of Malaysia as one of the world’s most popular countries in terms of tourist arrivals and receipts. In fact, it was reported this week that Penang made it to the CNN Travel’s best spring destination alongside other popular tourist destinations such as Spain and Greece, as well as various cities in the United States.

At the national level, tourism is in fact our fifth largest industry which contributed RM84 billion to the national economy, with nearly 26 million tourist arrivals in 2018. The industry is expected to continue to grow, with tourist arrivals projected to reach 30 million by the year 2020.

Aside from generating the number of tourists, the job opportunities created by the hospitality and tourism industries are helping the state of Penang to develop its human resources by retaining & training talents as well as enhancing overall human capital value in the state. I am delighted to see that DoubleTree Resort has also contributed to this by providing jobs and training for over 200 Malaysians in its workforce.

Complementing these tourism and GDP numbers are laudable achievements which we cannot take for granted. With so many external factors at play such as international relations, financial markets, and environmental issues, what can we do to protect ourselves against them?

I have no doubt that we must continually ask ourselves what contributes towards the appeal of Penang to the international and domestic visitors. Part of the answer, of course, is Penang’s rich heritage and strong cultural presence which resulted in George Town being inscribed into the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2008. Penang is an exceptional example of a multicultural city in Southeast Asia forged from the mercantile and civilisation exchanges with Malay, Chinese, Indian and European influences. All these resulted in a modern and vibrant Penang that offers unique and colourful experiences centred around food, architecture, lifestyle, art and culture.

However, I also believe that in addition to the range of experiences available to tourists, it is vitally important that there is existing infrastructure to support the growing number of visitors.

For example, the Penang International Airport currently had already surpassed its maximum capacity of handling 6.5 million passengers per year. The airport has recorded 7.78 million total passenger movement last year, representing 7.6% year-on-year growth. In this regard, the government and Malaysian Airport Holdings Bhd have agreed for an expansion of the Penang International Airport. The expansion project, which nearly doubled the airport’s capacity to 12 million passengers a year, is scheduled to start work in June 2020 and to complete in three years’ time.

Another area where the Penang State Government continues to welcome new development concerns hotels on the island. We are thankful for companies such as Cornerstone Partners Group which believes in the potential of Penang and is willing to invest over RM100 million to cover the cost of property acquisition. With this investment and commitment, Cornerstone Partners Group has brought the renowned Hilton brand to Penang, establishing their first DoubleTree Resort in Malaysia,

Indeed, since it opened a year ago, the DoubleTree Resort has established itself as a major force in the Penang hospitality and tourism industry, welcoming over 100,000 guests in its premises. These are vital and necessary contributions to the industry and help to position Penang as a major destination on the global tourist map.

I, therefore congratulate both Cornerstone Partners Group and DoubleTree Resort by Hilton, Penang, on the 1st anniversary of the resort, and given the achievements of the first year, we can expect many more bountiful anniversaries in the years to come.

Thank you.

Press Statement Penang Future Foundation (“PFF”)

Posted in Dari Meja Ketua Menteri

Press Statement by YAB Chow Kon Yeow, Chief Minister of Penang

Komtar, George Town, 25 March 2019


Penang Future Foundation (“PFF”) started in 2015 as the Penang State Government’s initiative to aid outstanding and deserving Malaysian youths to pursue tertiary studies in public/private universities in Malaysia. With valuable contribution from the private sector and donors, especially the Penang Turf Club, and recognizing the importance of education and the need to retain local talents, PFF has awarded approximately 408 scholarships over the last 4 years. Selected scholars come from a diverse range of backgrounds and are enrolled in fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, Accountancy and Finance.

Entering its fifth year, this scholarship fund intends to help the Penang State Government achieve our objectives of attracting, building and retaining human talent. For this initiative to continue well into the future and for more students to benefit from it, the Penang State Government intends to actively engage industry players and generous individuals to pool our resources for a strategic partnership that will provide better educational opportunities for future Malaysian leaders.

Prospective students may apply to be either a ‘PFF Penang Scholar’ or ‘PFF Mutiara Scholar’. Interested candidates are advised to check the eligibility requirements for each category. Both categories have different eligibility criteria based on, among others, candidates’ financial background and scholastic record. ‘PFF Penang Scholar’ caters for those with CGPA of 3.67 and above whereas ‘PFF Mutiara Scholar’ is available for applicants whose CGPA is between 3.00 to 3.66. Successful applicants will receive benefits that correspond with the scholarship awarded to them. Detailed information on benefits and terms of the scholarship is available at PFF’s website (  

Application window for PFF Scholarship 2019 will open from 31 May 2019 to 20 June 2019. Interested students are encouraged to keep a lookout for periodic announcements through the following channels –

  • PFF’s website at;
  • Buletin Mutiara’s distributed free copies;
  • social media websites including Facebook and Twitter; and
  • selected education fairs in Malaysia.