The Opening of Penang’s Aidilfitri Celebration 2018

Posted in Dari Meja Ketua Menteri

Speech by Chief Minister of Penang, YAB  Chow Kon Yeow
At The Opening of Penang’s Aidilfitri Celebration 2018

23 June 2018 @ Jalan Padang Kota Lama

What an honour it is to be here at our Padang Kota Lama to celebrate Hari Raya with everyone, where we can indulge in some of Penang’s most sumptuous food. Our very own Penang Esplanade, set by the waterfront in the heart of George Town is a major venue for celebrations and cultural performances, surrounded by Penang’s famous attractions, street food and heritage. Tonight, we celebrate Hari Raya with food and family amidst our heritage surroundings. One to be mentioned – I hear that we also have selections of traditional Hari Raya goodies here today.

Tourism being one of the largest contributors to Penang’s economy, Penang upkeep ourselves continuously to be one of the top tourist destinations in the world. Penang’s world-famous street food has placed our city on the global culinary map, and it has won us numerous awards from renown international publications. In 2017, CNN, for the second time, listed our Penang Assam Laksa 7th place in its list of the World’s 50 Most Delicious Foods. And in 2016, CNN also listed Penang’s Assam Laksa as one of the 8 World’s Hottest Street Foods. At the World Street Food Congress last year, two of Penang’s street food – Char Koay Teow and Nasi Kandar made it into the World Street Food Top 50 list. This illustrates Penang’s high-ranking reputation amongst the world’s finest culinary cultures.

2018 is a significant year for Penang. It marks our 10th year anniversary of being awarded the UNESCO World Heritage City status. Already a city where excitements and festivities never end, Penang continues to have celebrations in George Town, as well as around Penang, including the mainland. To commemorate 10 years of being a UNESCO World Heritage City, the upcoming Heritage Celebrations will be celebrated on an even bigger scale. So, be sure not to miss out this 7th July!

Statistics on our airport arrivals have shown a promising double-digit growth in the first quarter of this year. I foresee that this number will soar higher with the increased number of direct flights to Penang. Only this year, we have gotten new direct flights from five cities, namely Hanoi, Phuket, Doha, Banda Acheh and Jakarta. On top of these, four airlines have also increased their flight frequencies to Penang. This evidently and instantaneously shows a favourable feedback on Penang’s tourism status.

Now back to today’s celebration, Selamat Hari Raya everyone, let’s feast on and indulge in all the food, workshops and entertainment we’ve prepared for you this evening.

Don’t forget, we’ll be celebrating for another day at the Butterworth

Thank you. 

PENANG’S COMMEMORATION OF WORLD WATER DAY 2018

Posted in Dari Meja Ketua Menteri

SPEECH BY CHIEF MINISTER OF PENANG

PENANG’S COMMEMORATION OF WORLD WATER DAY 2018

23/6/2018

Yang Berhormat Tuan Yeoh Soon Hin
Penang State Excos

Yang Berhormat Tuan Wong Hon Wai
Bukit Bendera Member of Parliament

Yang Berhormat Nurul Izzah Anwar
Permatang Pauh Member of Parliament

Yang Berbahagia Dato’ Ir. Jaseni Maidinsa
CEO PBA Group of Companies

Prof. Dr. Chan Ngai Weng
President, Water Watch Penang

PBAHB & PBAPP Board of Directors

Penang State Heads of Department,

Heads of Divisions and Department, PBAPP Sdn Bhd

Distinguished Guests,

Dato Seri- Dato Seri, Dato’- Dato & Datin-Datin

Members of the Media

Ladies & Gentlemen

Good Morning.

I am pleased to be here today with you to commemorate World Water Day 2018 in Penang. It is good that we allocate at least one day a year to focus on water and Penang.

In Penang, we are privileged to enjoy good water supply, often to the extent that we take it for granted. Accordingly, we should thank Perbadanan Bekalan Air Pulau Pinang Sdn Bhd, or PBAPP, for doing a good job as our water supplier. That said, we should acknowledge the fact that Penang is a state with a small geographical footprint. There are only so many raw water resources that we can tap, and we have optimised all the raw water resources within our borders.

Of all our raw water resources, the most important is Sungai Muda in Seberang Prai. More than 80% of the raw water that is abstracted in Penang comes from this river. In 2017, PBAPP abstracted an average of 872 million litres of raw water from Sungai Muda per day.

If you think about it, all that raw water has to come from somewhere; and that somewhere is Ulu Muda. As mentioned by Dato’ Ir. Jaseni, Ulu Muda refers to a wide expanse of rainforests in Kedah that also serves as the largest water catchment area in North Malaysia.

Anything bad that happens in Ulu Muda inevitably threatens water supply in Penang. Since 2008, PBAPP and the Penang State Government have been expressing concern about logging in Ulu Muda. Logging causes deforestation; and deforestation degrades Ulu Muda’s capability to serve as a water catchment area. Moreover, forest land clearing related to logging causes soil erosion and sedimentation; and this affects the quality of the river water in Ulu Muda and Sungai Muda. Logging is usually regarded as a forestry issue. However, we know that Ulu Muda is more than just a forest reserve; it is the most important water catchment area for Perlis, Kedah and Penang.

In this context, we stated that logging in Ulu Muda should be regarded as a water supply issue. We tried our best to convince the previous Kedah State Government and the previous Federal Government to put a stop to it.

However, nothing was done.

Despite numerous exposés by various newspapers and press statements from many NGOs, the previous Kedah State Government claimed that logging was properly managed by the Kedah Forestry Department. In short, they ignored us and continued to cut down trees.

Today, there is a Pakatan Harapan State Government in Kedah and a Pakatan Harapan Federal Government in Putrajaya. It is a good time to re-visit logging in Ulu Muda issue as a water supply issue that affects Perlis, Kedah and Penang. In fact, we should now present the issue to new administrations in Kedah and Putrajaya on a different level. Logging in Ulu Muda is a socioeconomic threat to 3 northern states.

Let us consider the facts and figures:

• There are about 4.09 million people living in Perlis, Kedah and Penang. Everyone needs water supply to support their daily lives and activities.

• Thousands of businesses operate in Perlis, Kedah and Penang, ranging from “teh tarik” stalls to multinational manufacturing operations. All these businesses rely on the availability of sufficient water on a daily basis.

• The projected combined GDP contributions of Perlis, Kedah and Penang was estimated to be RM115 billion in 2016. Sustainable water supply management is an essential requirement for GDP growth.

• Ulu Muda provides 96% of the raw water that is used for water supply in Kedah, including in Pulau Langkawi; 70% of the raw water that is used for water supply in Perlis; and more than 80% of the raw water that we use for water supply in Penang.

When logging affects Ulu Muda as a water catchment area for Perlis, Kedah and Penang, we will face the risk of a regional water crisis. If there is a regional water supply crisis:

• 4.09 million people will suffer from lack of water;

• Thousands of businesses will suffer losses; and

• The GDP contributions of 3 states will be compromised.

As such, logging in Ulu Muda is a socioeconomic threat. It threatens the well-being of our people, our businesses and the regional economy.

With these considerations in mind, the Penang State Government and PBAPP are committed towards the campaign to SAVE ULU MUDA for the benefit of Perlis, Kedah and Penang. We intend to reach out to Perlis and Kedah to seek a consensus on how we can work together to ban logging in Ulu Muda and protect it as a “Northern Region Water Catchment Area”. In seeking to completely ban logging in Ulu Muda, we must be fair and realistic. “No logging” means a potential loss of income to the Kedah State Government. If possible, we look forward to working with Kedah to request for Federal compensation in lieu of “forest premiums” for logging; as well as to ask for Federal assistance to gazette, manage and protect Ulu Muda as a regional water catchment area.

The Penang State Government will strive to resolve this issue at state-to-state level. We will also seek support from Members of Parliament, or MPs, to resolve this issue at the Federal-level. I hope that all our Penang MPs will support the mission to SAVE ULU MUDA. If we can get the support from the MPs in Kedah and Perlis, so much the better. In fact, we should strive to make our campaign a regional campaign that reflects a joint resolve to sustain good water supply in Perlis, Kedah and Penang. A united approach will strengthen our case when we raise this matter at Federal level. 

In closing, I would like to congratulate PBAPP and Water Watch Penang for sharing and promoting the SAVE ULU MUDA message on World Water Day 2018. It is timely, and we need strong public support to get things done properly. As we step into the era of a “New Malaysia”, let us join hands in working for the benefit of Penang and the Northern Region of Malaysia. We must always remember that good water supply is a prerequisite for sustainable socioeconomic development.

Syabas and Thank You.

Majlis Pembukaan Majlis Jamuan Rakyat Aildilfitri 2018

Posted in Dari Meja Ketua Menteri

Ucapan Ketua Menteri Pulau Pinang YAB Chow Kon Yeow 
Majlis Pembukaan Majlis Jamuan Rakyat Aildilfitri 2018

23 Jun 2018 di Jalan Padang Kota Lama

Saya berasa amat berbesar hati dapat berada di Padang Kota Lama bersama-sama anda semua pada malam ini dalam Majlis Jamuan Rakyat Aidilfitri Pulau Pinang 2018. Pada malam ini, para pengunjung akan dapat merasai keenakan makanan Pulau Pinang yang sememangnya terkenal di seluruh Malaysia dan dunia.

Padang Kota Lama, atau juga dikenali sebagai Esplanade, yang terletak di tepi laut bandar raya George Town, merupakan sebuah lokasi popular dan utama dalam acara sambutan kebudayaan, pertunjukan seni dan sebagainya.

Lokasi strategik tersebut dikelilingi destinasi pelancongan yang menarik, gerai makanan, bangunan warisan serta pemandangan Seberang Perai. Justeru, lokasi sambutan pada malam ini adalah amat bertepatan, untuk dinikmati bersama-sama keluarga dan rakan taulan.

Sektor pelancongan merupakan penyumbang terbesar ekonomi Pulau Pinang. Serentak itu, Pulau Mutiara senantiasa berusaha setapak ke hadapan dalam memantapkan kedudukan negeri ini sebagai salah satu destinasi pelancongan utama negara dan juga dunia.

Kepelbagaian dan kelazatan makanan jalanan ataupun “street food” negeri yang “tip top” di serata dunia telah berjaya menempa nama Pulau Pinang di peta makanan global.

Pulau Pinang juga telah memenangi pelbagai pengiktirafan dari organisasi dan penerbitan antarabangsa. Antaranya, pada tahun 2017, CNN, buat kali keduanya telah menyenaraikan Asam Laksa Pulau Pinang pada tempat ke-7 dalam senarai 50 Makanan Paling Enak Dunia; pada World Street Food Congress tahun lepas di Manila, Filipina, dua makanan dari Pulau Pinang juga disenarai sebagai 50 makanan jalanan terbaik di dunia, iaitu Nasi Kandar Line Clear dan Char Koay Teow di Siam Road. Jadi, selepas anda makan di sini, anda boleh terus ke sana dan beratur ya...

Umumnya, tahun 2018 merupakan suatu tahun yang amat bermakna kepada negeri Pulau Pinang. Ini kerana ia menandakan ulang tahun ke-10 George Town dianugerahkan status Tapak Warisan Dunia UNESCO iaitu sejak tahun 2008.

Semua maklum bahawa di Pulau Pinang, anda boleh merasai segala-galanya, daripada makanan, ke pantai, bukit, bangunan warisan, mural, festival kebudayaan dan keagamaan, hiburan serta banyak lagi.

Bagi meraikan sambutan ke-10 ini, Sambutan Warisan George Town tahun ini pada 7hb Julai bakal diadakan dengan lebih meriah dan berskala besar, meliputi setiap komuniti masyarat di negeri ini.

Oleh itu, jangan lupa mengajak kawan-kawan ke tapak Warisan George Town pada 7hb Julai ini.

Tuan-tuan dan puan-puan,

Statistik ketibaan pelancong di Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Pulau Pinang telah menunjukkan peningkatan dua-digit pada suku pertama tahun ini. Sebanyak 821,207 pelancong antarabangsa tiba di negeri ini antara bulan Januari sehingga Mac, berbanding dengan hanya 706,270 orang tahun lepas. Peningkatan ini adalah sebanyak 16.27%.

Kerajaan Negeri menjangkakan angka berkenaan akan meningkat dengan bertambahnya beberapa penerbangan terus ke negeri ini. Pada tahun ini sahaja, lima penerbangan terus yang baharu telah dibuka, membabitkan bandar Hanoi, Phuket, Doha, Banda Acheh dan Jakarta. Secara tidak langsung, situasi tersebut menunjukkan betapa strategiknya Pulau Pinang untuk pelawat luar dari segi pelancongan, ekonomi dan logistik.

Merujuk kepada majlis kita pada malam ini, saya berharap anda semua terhibur dengan aktiviti yang disediakan seperti bengkel kraftangan serta seni tradisional dan juga persembahan kebudayaan.

Dalam kesempatan ini, saya mendoakan semoga sambutan Hari Raya tahun ini adalah lebih baik daripada tahun-tahun sebelumnya, dan semua rakyat Pulau Pinang sentiasa diberkati, sihat dan gembira selalu.

Jangan lupa terdapat satu lagi majlis yang sama pada Sabtu depan di Butterworth Art Walk.

Jumpa di sana dan Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri! Maaf zahir dan batin.