LAUNCH OF NEXT NORMAL GUIDELINES FOR BUSINESS EVENTS PENANG
OPENING SPEECH BY THE RIGHT HONOURABLE CHOW KON YEOW
CHIEF MINISTER OF PENANG
LAUNCH OF NEXT NORMAL GUIDELINES FOR
BUSINESS EVENTS PENANG
18 July 2020, 2:30 PM
SETIA SPICE CONVENTION CENTRE, PENANG
The end of year 2019 brought us a great deal of excitement as we opened our arms to welcome and embrace 2020, with many dreams and achievements to look forward to.
However, we were greeted with the unexpected Covid-19 pandemic which brought both personal crises and economic turmoil not only to the nation and state but also to the world, with the tourism and business events industry being particularly hard hit. How countries and cities respond to the pandemic will shape our post-COVID-19 world.
Penang took immediate measures to flatten the Covid-19 infection curve by initiating the 'Penang Lawan COVID-19' campaign. Our open and accessible platforms kept Penangites, as well as other followers, updated on the latest Covid-19 news and case count for both state and national levels. Through the cooperation of every Penangite, Penang successfully attained 'Green State' status within a short period of time.
In this regard, I must also commend the efforts by our frontline staff who worked extremely hard at the early stage of the outbreak of Covid-19. The police, the National Security Council, Health Department, Immigration Department and many more, have done their best, at the risk to their own lives and their loved ones, to keep Penangites safe.
As a result, the number of cases in Penang is among the lowest in the country, with only one death confirmed. As of 13 July 2020, the national figure for mortalities is 122. With Penang having a population of about 1.8 million, this is indeed a commendable situation.
Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and private companies have also been very committed in their efforts. The Penang state government received tremendous support from them, either in the form of cash or donations of much-needed material, such as face masks and gloves for our front-liners.
Now in the recovery phase, the state leadership is focused and working relentlessly on solutions that will strike a balance between public health and economic health. We have no intention of wavering from our Penang2030 vision while embracing the Next Normal.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Together, we shall move forward through the Penang Next Normal Strategy, which consists of three primary missions namely strengthening the ecosystem, coordinating the ecosystem to the changes of the 21st century and building resilience to any crisis in the future.
As part of the strategy, the state of Penang will focus our strength in the electronics and electrical industry in order to draw innovation and high-end technologies to our shores. This will surely move us forward in the digital economy, as well as ease businesses and the general public in adapting to the Next Normal. In order to achieve this, and to safeguard public health and safety, business practices need to adapt. These new SOPs apply not only to the tourism and business events industry but also to the basic public health and safety requirements that each of us should comply with.
Hence, with the implementation of these SOPs and compliance by all related individuals, I’m certain that it will only further enhance our ‘Green State’ status, thus allowing us to revive the tourism and business events industry in this Next Normal. Together, we shall rebuild the economy of Penang and all of us can be best prepared to adapt to the Next Normal if we combine the already time tested approach of involving the whole-of-the-government and whole-of-society efforts when we fought the worst phase of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Penang Lawan COVID-19!