Penang wants Padi Festival in national tourism calendar

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BUKIT MERTAJAM: The Penang government plans to enter the International Padi Festival into the national tourism calender.

Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said that the event which was entering into its second edition in the state received a very encouraging response and simultaneously proved it could achieve recognition as a national tourism event.

He said that the state government would co-operate with the Penanti State Assemblyman Dr Norlela Ariffin to discuss measures that must be taken to enable the festival to be entered into the national tourism calender.

‘’The uniqueness of the event can lure visitors and tourists. It is also an experience which cannot be easily obtained especially to those staying in the city.

‘’The organisation of this festival is not just for fun because it has a very clear objective especially in deciding the direction and maintaining the agriculture sector especially the planting of padi in the area,’’ he told reporters after launching the Penang International Padi Festival 2.0 themed ‘’Padi Ku Warisan Ku Rezeki Ku’’, here today.

Chow said that the festival which would be taking place for three days from yesterday was being held at the Kampung Terus Jetty Padi Field, Penanti here, the oldest padi heritage site in the Seberang Perai area, namely, since the 1800.

The festival was being enlivened with numerous programmes including the first straw art sculpture exhibition in Malaysia, catching fish in the padi field, painting of local sceneries by local artists and sales of fruits, vegetables, food and drinks.

Chow also released fish and giant prawn seeds in Terus River to balance the eco-system and to provide a future source of income for the fishermen.

Meanwhile, commenting on the demand of the Penang Fishermen’s Association that the Penang government settle the compensation payments to fishermen affected by the Butterworth Outer Ring Road’s (BORR) reclamation project, Chow said that the state government would look into it to determine if the claim had basis. — Bernama

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