Launch of Community Park and Back Lanes at Lebuh Armenian

Posted in Dari Meja Ketua Menteri

Speech by Chief Minister of Penang
At The Launch of Community Park and Back Lanes at Lebuh Armenian

14 September 2017


Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the launch of the community park at Lebuh Armenian.

This park is one of the very few open green spaces in the George Town World Heritage Site. This open space originated from a fire that destroyed a number of buildings in the late-19th century.

Over time, the space began to be used informally as a meeting and leisure space for residents of the neighbourhood. After two unsuccessful attempts, a formal reorganisation of the area as a garden took place in the 1990s.

Importance of Residential Population

After the listing of George Town as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008, we kick-started the rejuvenation of the area with the restoration of the heritage building that is now the office of George Town World Heritage Incorporated (GTWHI).

Since then, we have been working with our partners at Think City and the Aga Khan Trust for Culture and MBPP to plan for the transformation of the entire area.

Community Consultation

Based on results from the survey, several designs for the park was presented to community members and stakeholders. The final design was based on feedback during this consultation session – it is, indeed, a park for the community.

The minimalistic design of the park was also a deliberate effort to enable full appreciation of the surrounding heritage buildings and the neighbourhood character.

I am also very proud to learn that this project has received a Merit Award by the Malaysian Institute of Planners.

Community Feedback

Residents believe that the park led to significant improvements in walkability, community spirit, safety, noise levels, cleanliness and maintenance.

For example, 92% of the residents rated the cleanliness and maintenance of the area as good after the opening of the park and the upgrading of public amenities, compared to only 2% before.

With the improvement in pedestrian movement around Armenian Street, Cannon Street, and Jalan Masjid Kapitan Keling, this area (also known as the Malay Quarters) offers a welcome respite in the dynamic and stimulating city of George Town.

The community park in its current form is the culmination of a long process, from the initial community consultation started as early as 2011, with the final design completed in 2015. The park was completed in 2016. The back lanes were subsequently completed in June 2017.

Lebuh Armenian Integrated Programme
The community park is part of the wider Lebuh Armenian Integrated Programme, which also included work on the basketball court, the MBPP Youth Centre, and the upgrading of the adjacent back lanes.

As required for the George Town Special Area Plan, the back lanes adjacent to this park were paved using porous concrete.

The project went beyond visual improvements by exploring ways to eliminate leakages from pipes, introducing safer electrical cabling and greening the environment. 
Thus far, Think City has contributed a total of RM2.5 million to the community park and the upgrading of the back lanes. MBPP has also contributed RM300,000 to the improvement of the back lanes.

The Lebuh Armenian Integrated Programme also includes the ongoing conservation work at the Syed al-Attas Mansion, which will function as a community space upon the completion of the conservation works, thanks to the commitment of the Mayor of MBPP.

Thank you.

IKEA Batu Kawan Groundbreaking Ceremony

Posted in Dari Meja Ketua Menteri

Speech by Chief Minister of Penang
IKEA Batu Kawan Groundbreaking Ceremony
Tuesday, 12 September 2017

A very good morning to all of you.

First and foremost, I would like to thank IKEA for inviting me to this momentous occasion for Batu Kawan and the people of Penang. It is my pleasure to officiate the groundbreaking ceremony signalling the start of construction for IKEA Batu Kawan – the first IKEA store in Penang and Northern Malaysia.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The state of Penang is fortunate as it has continued to enjoy tremendous growth and development over the years. Penang is edging closer towards becoming a location of choice for investors and tourists, not only in Malaysia but for the region as well.

Beyond that, Penang is also increasingly recognised as a locale of choice for residents who desire a liveable and sustainable environment. This is evident from the recent 2016 Migration Report by the Malaysian Department of Statistics. Penang recorded the highest figures of interstate migration with a net influx of 12,000 new residents between 2015 and 20161.

Keeping up with this excellent track record, the Penang State Government aims to develop Batu Kawan as its third satellite city that will serve as the integrated central business district (CBD) and lifestyle hub for the Northern region. This is essential to our ambition of making Penang an international and intelligent state that is also attractive to live, learn, work and play.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

IKEA store is expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2019. The project investment value is approaching RM 600 Million. Further, IKEA has a strong reputation in sustainability efforts.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

As a well-loved brand amongst Malaysians, I am certain that together with the other catalyst projects in Batu Kawan, IKEA will provide a great boost to our economy. IKEA is like a magnet for Batu Kawan. The store will not only attract millions of shoppers but it will bring hundreds of new jobs, create spin-off business for suppliers, draw in tourists and new investors.

Of course, when we talk about IKEA, it is more than just the economic benefits. We couldn’t leave out mentioning its widely popular meatballs and curry puffs that are coming to our shores. I can’t wait to get a taste of these IKEA signature dishes myself after this ceremony.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Before I end my speech, I would like to take this opportunity to thank the business community, PDC and the state government for their contribution to Penang’s progress. Together, let’s embrace the future and make Penang that is clean, green, safe and healthy, a model state for the rest of Malaysia.

With this, I now officiate the groundbreaking ceremony for the first IKEA store in Penang and Northern Malaysia, IKEA Batu Kawan.

Thank you!

Majlis Perasmian Pameran ‘Resonance of Magical Moments-Donation from the Estate of Tan Choon Ghee’

Posted in Dari Meja Ketua Menteri

Ucapan Ketua Menteri Pulau Pinang

Sempena Majlis Perasmian Pameran ‘Resonance of Magical Moments-Donation from the Estate of Tan Choon Ghee’

Tarikh : 09hb. September 2017 (Sabtu)
Masa : 4.00 petang
Tempat : Galeri BSLNPP Paras Bawah Dewan Sri Pinang, 10200 Lebuh Light Pulau Pinang


Salam Sejahtera dan Selamat Petang.

I am most glad to be here for this historic exhibition.

Tan Choon Ghee’s fondness of sketching the beauty of Penang’s street scenes and ports makes these works most interesting and extraordinary. Even in his worldwide sojourn to places like Barcelona, London, Venice and Paris, he captured the uniqueness and beauty of buildings in those countries through the production of remarkable sketches and paintings that impressed everyone who has seen them.

Although Tan Choon Ghee left us on 28 December 2010, his works are still highly sought after, viewed, treasured and appreciated to this day. He will always be remembered as Malaysia’s best watercolour artist of his generation.

To Madam Kam Hye Sin, the widow of the late Mr. Tan Choon Ghee, I, together with all Penangites would like to express our sincere gratitude to her for generously donating 124 pieces of her late husband’s works to the Penang State Art Gallery’s permanent collection. This noble act is highly appreciated and will hopefully be emulated by all local artists and art lovers, especially by those from Penang.

I sincerely hope that all artists and art lovers will take advantage of this golden opportunity to appreciate and be inspired by Mr. Tan’s works, which will further enhance the vibrancy of the visual art scene in Penang. The late Mr. Tan was one of the Penang artists who inspired and motivated the Penang State Government to cultivate new talents and to develop art and culture.

The Penang state government hopes to make Penang a hub for art, culture and heritage in Malaysia. Apart from gaining UNESCO World Heritage city status, the Penang state government will be building this hub through our RM20 million Penang Art District project. A city can only be regarded as an international city when it is also a centre of art and culture.

We believe that art and culture can be one of the economic game changers that drive Penang's transformation into an international and intelligent city. In light of the planned RM20 million Penang State Museum restoration project, it is hoped that these two projects will place Penang prominently on the international art and cultural front.

Thank you.

Malay version:

Terlebih dahulu saya berasa amat berbangga kerana telah dijemput untuk merasmikan pameran yang cukup bersejarah ini bersempena dengan sumbangan sebanyak 124 buah karya mendiang Tan Choon Ghee oleh balu beliau iaitu Puan Kam Hye Sin bagi dijadikan Koleksi Tetap Balai Seni Lukis Negeri Pulau Pinang (BSLNPP).

Walaupun pelukis Tan Choon Ghee telah meninggalkan kita pada tanggal 28hb. Disember 2010, hasil- hasil karyanya masih terus dicari, disimpan, ditatap, dihayati dan dihargai sehingga ke hari ini. Beliau senantiasa dikenang sebagai seorang pelukis cat air yang terunggul di negara ini dalam era generasi beliau. Hasil- hasil karya Tan Choon Ghee yang gemar melakarkan keindahan dan suasana pemandangan di lebuh - lebuh serta pelabuhan- pelabuhan di Pulau Pinang merupakan sesuatu yang sangat menarik dan luar biasa untuk dihayati. Malah, sepanjang pengembaraan Tan Choon Ghee ke seluruh dunia seperti di Barcelona, London, Venice dan Paris, beliau telah mengabadikan keunikan dan keindahan bangunan-bangunan di negara-negara tersebut melalui penghasilan lakaran- lakaran dan lukisan-lukisan yang mempesonakan setiap mata yang menatapnya.

Saya juga ingin merakamkan ucapan ribuan terima kasih yang tidak terhingga kepada balu mendiang Tan Choon Ghee iaitu Puan Kam Hye Sin diatas kemurahan hati beliau dengan mendermakan sebanyak 124 buah karya suami kesayangan beliau kepada BSLNPP bagi dijadikan sebagai koleksi tetap. Semangat ini wajar dicontohi oleh semua kerana setiap karya yang dihadiahkan kepada BSLNPP bagi dijadikan sebagai koleksi tetap secara automatiknya akan menjadi aset negeri. Karya-karya ini akan disimpan dengan baik dan akan dipamerkan kepada pelawat- pelawat BSLNPP dari masa ke semasa. Kita berasa amat bertuah kerana kita kini mempunyai koleksi karya-karya terbaik pelukis tersohor Tan Choon Ghee. Jika kita ingin membelinya mungkin nilai keseluruhannya akan mencecah jutaan ringgit.

Selain itu, saya juga ingin merakamkan ucapan syabas di atas penerbitan monograf Tan Choon Ghee: Resonance of Magical Moments-Donation from the Estate of Tan Choon Ghee. Monograf ini akan menjadi satu rujukan yang istimewa berkenaan dengan karya-karya beliau.

Terima Kasih.

The Opening Ceremony of Penang International Green Carnival 2017

Posted in Dari Meja Ketua Menteri

Speech by Chief Minister of Penang

At The Opening Ceremony of Penang International Green Carnival 2017

on 9 September 2017 
 at Setia SPICE Arena:


Good Afternoon and welcome to Penang International Green Carnival 2017, the biggest platform for environmental education in Northern Malaysia. The carnival’s theme this year - “Against Climate Change Together (Acct), Now!”, aims to raise environmental awareness and motivate people to tackle the cause and effect of global warming and create a net impact on fighting climate change.

The carnival is a family day with inspiring educational and awareness programmes and activities. It is a platform to promote green ideas, sustainable solutions and practices, products showcase, technologies and organisations.

Penang State Government has a vision of making Penang a “Cleaner, Greener, Safer, Healthier, and Happier”. Since 2010, we kicked start a series of environmental initiatives to promote resource efficiency such as free CAT BUS, No Free Plastic Bags Every day, total ban on polystyrene food containers, giving incentives to green buildings, building cycling lanes and enforcement of Waste Segregation at Source policy.

Penang has achieved the highest recycling rate in the country of 38% as compared to the national recycling rate of 22% and we hope to increase the recycling rate to 40% by 2020. On June 1st this year, we have marked another milestone with the enforcement of Waste Segregation at Source Policy in our quest to make Penang the first green state of Malaysia. In Penang, an average of 1,700 - 1,800 tonnes of waste are sent to Pulau Burung landfill every day. The estimated landfill life span is 42 years if it is equipped with the Material Recovery Facilities (MRF) and could last for 60 years if food waste converter is equipped as well. Waste segregation at source is one of the ways to sustain the environment and to reduce waste generation to the Pulau Burung landfill.

We are the first state to oppose Nuclear power energy plants in Malaysia and will continue to do so. We hope that Malaysia will abandon building nuclear energy plants like Germany. We will not permit any nuclear energy reactors to be built in Penang and the Federal Government has agreed to our decision. Many developed countries such as Germany have gradually opted out nuclear power plants. Whatever the environmental protection and safeguards imposed, the risks are too great!

We had never allowed logging on permanent forest reserves, the only state in Malaysia where not a single square inch has been touched. And we have planted more than 274,000 new trees in Penang since 2008. Penang State Government has also stopped serving sharkfin soup to protect our natural biodiversity. We are well on our way to be the first green state in Malaysia.

Tomorrow, our state exco YB Phee Boon Poh and leaders of the two local government – Dato’ Maimunah and Dato’ Sr Haji Rozali will be meeting you here for a public dialogue on climate change - “Who cares? We care!”. We hope that you will take this opportunity to raise your concerns to help us make better decision for the future.

The Carnival is jointly organised by Penang Green Council (PGC), Malaysian Green Building Confederation (MGBC) Northern Chapter and Green Building Index (GBI). Our heartfelt gratitude goes out to Penang Island City Council (MBPP), Seberang Perai Municipal Council (MPSP), co-organisers, sponsors dan partners, the carnival would not have been possible were it not for the strong and continuous support from them.

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank our sponsors for sponsoring the Penang International Green Carnival 2017 to showcase their business’ commitment to the environment and quality of life. They are our main sponsors: Solarvest Energy Sdn Bhd, Sunway Property, Wiitrac Elevator Sdn Bhd and sponsors: Panasonic Malaysia Sdn Bhd, Sulomas Utara Sdn Bhd, Apollo Vista Concept Sdn Bhd, Aim Max Media Sdn Bhd, Sunshine Wholesale Mart Sdn Bhd, Genting Hong Kong & Star Cruises, Ninebot Malaysia, Biji-biji Initiative, Entopia by Penang Butterfly Farm, Greenxagon Marketing Sdn Bhd, Cenviro Sdn Bhd, Nets Printwork Sdn Bhd and Koo Bros Production.

Finally, we do not inherit the earth but only borrow it from our children. Let us all ACCT (Against Climate Change Together), Now and make Penang a Cleaner, Greener, Safer, Healthier and Happier State!

Thank you.

Lim Guan Eng