Jack Ma’s kung fu movie stunning trailer

Posted on : 12-11-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

KUALA LUMPUR: Who says a billionaire can’t do kung fu?
The movie “Gong Shou Dao” (The Art of Attack and Defence), starring Alibaba founder Jack Ma Yun, released its official stunning six-minute trailer yesterday which had 5.9 million views on Jet Li’s official Facebook page.
The movie, released on Nov 11, and also starring Jet Li, Donnie Yen, Sammo Hung Kam-bo, champion boxer Zou Shiming, Thai actor Tony Jaa and retired Mongolian sumo champion Asashoryu Akinori, will definitely blow away any kung fu movie fans around the world.
In the first 40 seconds of the movie’s trailer, several martial art masters gather in a warehouse while passing a basketball to one another, showing off their kung fu skills, with the ball landing on Ma’s fist who punches through it.
What follows is a one-vs-one showdown between the martial art masters with Ma, through stunning graphics.
“I promise you the full film is guaranteed to be very exciting,” said Jet Li, who is also the executive producer of the film, in his Facebook post.
SOURCE:- FREEMALAYSIATODAY

KUALA LUMPUR: Who says a billionaire can’t do kung fu?

The movie “Gong Shou Dao” (The Art of Attack and Defence), starring Alibaba founder Jack Ma Yun, released its official stunning six-minute trailer yesterday which had 5.9 million views on Jet Li’s official Facebook page.

The movie, released on Nov 11, and also starring Jet Li, Donnie Yen, Sammo Hung Kam-bo, champion boxer Zou Shiming, Thai actor Tony Jaa and retired Mongolian sumo champion Asashoryu Akinori, will definitely blow away any kung fu movie fans around the world.

In the first 40 seconds of the movie’s trailer, several martial art masters gather in a warehouse while passing a basketball to one another, showing off their kung fu skills, with the ball landing on Ma’s fist who punches through it.

What follows is a one-vs-one showdown between the martial art masters with Ma, through stunning graphics.

“I promise you the full film is guaranteed to be very exciting,” said Jet Li, who is also the executive producer of the film, in his Facebook post.

SOURCE:- FREEMALAYSIATODAY

WTM (London’s World Travel Market) 2017 good platform for visit Malaysia 2020

Posted on : 12-11-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s participation in London’s World Travel Market (WTM) 2017 is particularly special as Malaysia is making early preparations for the Visit Malaysia Year 2020.

Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz in a statement today said the WTM platform provided the Malaysian delegation the opportunity to leverage on the Visit Malaysia 2020 campaign to gain confidence and partnership from industry players in London.

“Malaysia intends to enhance accessibility from the United Kingdom (UK) and Europe markets through collaborations with airline carriers such as Singapore Airlines, Etihad Airways, Emirates, Qatar Airways and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines.

“Malaysia’s tourism industry developments, including the completion of the Mass Rapit Transit (MRT) system, are timely in the run-up to our Visit Malaysia Year 2020, which Malaysia hopes to attract 36 million tourists worldwide,” he said.

Mohamed Nazri said this development also signified Malaysia’s genuine interest to grow and promote it as a top tourist destination and gave assurance to industry players in London of Malaysia’s commitment to tourism growth.

WTM 2017 was held in London from Nov 6 to 8, with the participation of a 130-member strong delegation from Malaysia led by Mohamed Nazri.

It marked Malaysia’s 34th year of participation in the premier travel and tourism trade exhibition since 1983, a gesture of Malaysia’s dedication to strengthening the UK and Europe markets.

SOURCE–BERNAMA

Prince Charles’ kindness touches the people’s hearts

Posted on : 09-11-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

GEORGE TOWN: Prince of Wales, Prince Charles’ kindness towards the people touched the hearts of many during His Royal Highness’ visit to the China House at Lebuh Pantai here today.

Sugar cane and coconut trader, Tan Teik Chuan said the prince was a “very down to earth person” when he willingly greeted and shook hands with the crowd at his shop located about 350m from the Sun Yat Sen Heritage Trail at Armenian Street.

Describing Charles as a kind-hearted and warm person, he said the prince enquired about his business and the source of the coconuts he sold at his shop.

“Prince Charles asked me about my business, as well as the price,” Tan told Bernama here. He has been operating his business for the past nine months.

For Devinda Kaur, 54, the opportunity to meet and shake hands with Prince Charles will last forever in her memory.

“I’m very happy and today is my luckiest day, having been able to meet His Royal Highness,” she said.

Earlier, attired in a light grey suit with black and red striped tie, the Prince of Wales visited the Sun Yat Sen Museum at Lebuh Armenian here.

Signing the visitors’ book, he spent about a few minutes before leaving for the World Fish Centre at Bayan Lepas.

Earlier, Charles and wife, Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall visited the Seven Terrace here at 12.40pm and was accompanied by the Island City Council’s (MBPP) mayor, Datuk Maimunah Mohd Sharif.

Seven Terraces is a contiguous row of Anglo-Chinese terrace houses located just behind the Goddess of Mercy Temple in Jalan Masjid Kapitan Keling here.

The row of houses is a sterling, splendid example of an adaptive reuse of heritage buildings that is of low density and low impact.

The visit of Prince Charles and Camilla to Malaysia is part of their 11-day tour of Singapore, Malaysia and India from Oct 30 to Nov 9.

Previous visits by the British Royalty here were by Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh who attended the official opening of the 16th Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur in 1998, and the visit by Prince William and Kate Middleton, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in September 2012.

SOURCE— BERNAMA

Royal couple’s visit puts Sarawak on tourism map – Abdul Karim

Posted on : 09-11-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

KUCHING: The visit by the British royal couple, Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales and Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall here yesterday has put Sarawak on the world tourism map.

Sarawak Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said this was due to the fact that the couple had wide world media coverage, especially in the United Kingdom.

“Wherever they go, the world media and especially media in UK will publish it. This puts Sarawak on the world tourism map,” he told Bernama here today.

Abdul Karim was impressed with Prince Charles’ passion for the environment and conservation, shown during the latter’s visit to the Semenggoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre and Sarawak Biodiversity Centre here.

“His Royal Highness seems fascinated with the orangutans at the Semenggoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre as well as the Sarawak Biodiversity Centre.

“He asked a lot of questions from the caretakers of the two centres and seemed very satisfied with what Sarawak is doing,” Abdul Karim said, adding that he was pleased with their visit here.

The visit was part of a seven-day visit to Malaysia to mark the 60th anniversary of bilateral relations between Malaysia and Britain.

SOURCE— BERNAMA

Prince Charles and wife visit S’wak Cultural Village

Posted on : 07-11-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

KUCHING: Today, the cheerful atmosphere at the iconic Sarawak Cultural Village (SCV) is somehow special and unique from any other day, when the ‘living museum’ on the foothills of the legendary Mount Santubong received British royalty as visitors.

Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales, and his wife Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, arrived at the SCV, some 35 km from here around 2.30pm, accompanied by the Minister-in-Attendance Datuk Seri S.K. Devamany, who is also Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister and Sarawak Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth And Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Hamzah.

Upon arrival, the royal entourage was greeted by Sarawak Economic Development chairman, Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Hussain, SCV general manager Jane Lian Labang, SCV officials and feted to a brief welcoming performance by SCV dancers in their colourful traditional costumes.

The British royal couple then took a stroll along the wooden trail to explore the fascinating ‘village’ landscape the centre had to offer in its tireless hope to share the Sarawak experience to the world “all within a day”.

Their first stop was at the Rumah Iban or Iban longhouse to explore the interior of the traditional house of the largest ethnic tribe in Sarawak.

At the Iban longhouse with its unique home structure that is usually located away from the bustling city, it is customary for its visitors to be greeted by the longhouse maidens and young men performing traditional dances and playing ceremonial gongs as a welcome gesture to their humble house.

Prince Charles later had a private dialogue session with six community leaders from the Bidayuh, Iban, Orang Ulu, Melanau, Chinese and Malay communities at Persada Alam, while Camilla proceeded to the Dewan Lagenda to view the local craft exhibition.

The session lasted for some 15 minutes, and after that the royal couple proceeded to Rumah Penan, or the Penan hut, where Charles was clearly excited when he tried his skill at using the blowpipe.

The royal couple were then ushered to the lake in the middle of the ‘village” for a ride in a simple bamboo raft to get that “daily transportation in the remote area” experience.

The royal couple left the SCV at around 3.40pm to proceed with their tour of Kuching. They are expected to head for Penang later this evening.

SOURCE— BERNAMA

Global promotion for Sabah, Labuan dive sites

Posted on : 02-11-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

LABUAN– Popular and latest diving sites of Malaysia will be promoted globally at the international platform of DEMA Orlando (Diving Equipment and Marketing Association) 2017 from Nov 1- 4 at Orland ,Florida, United States.

Tourism Malaysia Ambassador for the diving segment (2017-2019) and internationally renowned diver Clement Lee will be the Malaysian speaker to promote diving in Malaysia and to give a presentation on Nov 2.

Labuan-born, Clement, 65, is currently working on promoting diving in other lesser known islands in Semporna, Sabah such as Matabuan, Bohey Dulang, Si Amil and Denawan to take the pressure off Sipadan and to preserve the island\’s underwater life.

Malaysia is among the leading dive destinations in the world with one of the richest marine environments in the Indo-Pacific Basin.

The incredible bio-diversity of marine life, coupled with warm clear waters, beautiful islands and breathtaking beaches keep divers coming back time and time again.

Other diving sites in Malaysia to be promoted include Tioman Island and Aur Island in Johor, Kapas Island and Perhentian Island in Terengganu and Mantanani and Mataking in Sabah.

Speaking to Bernama, he said Labuan’s latest scuba dive site of Vernon Bank is one of those on the list for the global promotion.

“The existing Labuan ship wrecks of American Wreck, Australian Wreck, Cement Wreck and Blue Water Wreck are not spared and they will also be promoted, as part of the Malaysia’s popular scuba diving sites,” Clement said.

Clement Lee, has been in the Dive Industry spanning over 30 years, one of the pioneers in diving tourism in Sabah as well as a pioneer in the now renowned Sipadan island.

“I’m still active in scuba diving and conservation programmes throughout the country and certain parts of the world.

Clement just returned from Taipei last week after an invitation from Tourism Malaysia Taipei and Lion Travel to give presentations and talks about the various dive spots and destinations in Malaysia.

He was awarded the prestigious DEMA Reaching Out Award in 2008 in Las Vegas and became the only one from this region to be inducted into the International Scuba Divers Hall of Fame in Cayman in 2011.

Appointed as Tourism Malaysia Advisor of Diving in 2015, Clement has travelled extensively for promoting diving in Malaysia and giving talks all over the world.

Recognised for his contribution to the growth of recreational diving in Sabah, Clement, from Borneo Divers was inducted into the International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame (ISDHF) on Nov 8, 2011 in Cayman Islands. Founded by the Cayman Island\’s Ministry of Tourism in 2000, the ISDHF was designed to honour individuals whose contribution to the sport has been immeasurable.

International undersea photographer (Seahorse Production founder) Rudy Whitworth who is collaborating with Tourism Malaysia on Malaysia’s diving promotion is also scheduled to give a presentation on the latest Malaysia’s diving sites.

“After diving at several historical scuba dive sites in the waters off Labuan of which I found very interesting and have potential, Labuan will be a big part of my presentations scheduled on Nov 3,” he told Bernama.

I will have two presentations that I will deliver for Scuba Shows, the first is called ?Emerging Dive Locations in Malaysia’ and will contain information and images from each of the five locations I went to.

“The initial showing of this presentation will be at DEMA and the second is called ‘Shipwrecks of Malaysia’.

“This show will highlight the shipwreck diving opportunities at four of the five locations of Tioman, Kuching, Miri and Labuan and the initial presentation is scheduled for the Chicago scuba show ‘Our World Underwater’ in late February 2018.

At DEMA, dive and travel industry professionals from around the world gather in Orlando to take part in the world’s premier trade exhibition for diving, action water sports and adventure travel industries.

Exhibitors showcase the latest products and services in fields like diving and watersports equipment, swimwear, boats, dive and adventure travel, dive training and diving publications among others. Among attendees are diving and watersports retailers, dive resort operators, dive training agencies, travel agents and press and media representatives.

Beyond the exhibit floor, DEMA provides excellent educational programmes and events for industry professionals including seminars on state-of-the industry topics and the premier industry networking event, the DEMA Awards Party.

SOURCE–BERNAMA

Prince Charles and wife to visit Malaysia Nov 2-8

Posted on : 02-11-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

KUALA LUMPUR: Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales, and his wife Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, will make an official visit to Malaysia from Nov 2 to 8, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA).

In a statement today, MOFA indicated that this would be the first visit by the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall to Malaysia.

Previous visits by members of the British Royalty were on Sept 20 to 23 ,1998 by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh who attended the official opening of the 16th Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur, and the visit by Prince William and Kate Middleton, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, in September 2012, according to the statement.

Prince Charles and Camilla would be visiting a number of places and participate in various significant events to commemorate the 60th anniversary of Malaysia-United Kingdom bilateral relations, it said.

Their Royal Highnesses are expected to engage with all levels of Malaysians, from royalty to underprivileged children as well as the business community.

Prince Charles and Camilla are also expected to have an audience with His Majesty the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Sultan Muhammad V at Istana Negara and a meeting with the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak and his wife.

To commemorate the historical visit, Pos Malaysia has issued a special stamp to mark the milestone in the 60 years of bilateral relations between Malaysia and the United Kingdom.

Bilateral relations between the two countries encompass a wide range of areas including trade, defence and security, education, digital economy, green technology, renewable energy, culture and tourism.

Malaysia is United Kingdom’s second largest export market in Asean and the UK is Malaysia’s third largest trading partner in Europe, while in the field of education, there are currently more than 18,000 Malaysians studying in the UK.

SOURCE— BERNAMA

Royal visit marks close Malaysia-UK ties

Posted on : 02-11-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

KUALA LUMPUR: It will be the longest stop on their autumn tour when the Prince of Wales, Prince Charles and his wife Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, arrive at Kuala Lumpur International Airport tomorrow.

In their inaugural visit to the country, Their Royal Highnesses are expected to visit a number of places in Kuala Lumpur, Perak, Sarawak and Penang, as well as participate in various significant events in the span of seven days (Nov 2 to 8) to commemorate the 60th anniversary of Malaysia-United Kingdom bilateral relations.

The royal visit is part of a tour of Malaysia, Singapore and India from Oct 30 to Nov 9.

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall’s visit to the Commonwealth nations, which is at the request of the British government, will highlight key themes, including celebrating community, cultural diversity and promoting business innovation.

According to British High Commissioner to Malaysia Vicki Treadell, it is a huge compliment for Malaysia to have Their Royal Highnesses visit Malaysia the longest, as Prince Charles and Camilla want to learn more about Malaysia, and meet as many Malaysians as they can in as many parts of the country.

“Compared to their visits to other parts of the world, it is actually the biggest in terms of the number of days that they had done anywhere else.

“Indeed, they want to see the diversity of the Malaysian people, their culture, heritage, flora and fauna, as well as the diversity of the partnerships that we have, whether it is through the government, business, defence, academia, science, research and so forth,” she told a press conference, here, today.

Treadell said the royal visit would commence in the heart of the city, with an event hosted by the Sultan of Perak Sultan Nazrin Shah at the Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia, where it would involve youth engagement with both Prince Charles and Camilla.

The Royal Highnesses are also expected to have an audience with Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Sultan Muhammad V at Istana Negara and a meeting with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak and his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor.

Treadell said one of the highlights of the tour would be the Gala Dinner, which would be attended by senior dignitaries in Malaysia, as well as key figures from business, arts, culture and media.

“We have gone to the extent of designing a menu for the Gala Dinner where each dish is a fusion of British and Malaysian elements.

“An example of the menu is the beef ‘rendang’ Wellington and an English trifle dessert layered with Malaysian mango puree, dried pineapple crisps, alongside English berries and the standard custard,” she said.

Treadell said there would be certain public occasions where people could come and see Their Royal Highnesses for themselves.

“However, for security reasons, we are not allowed to reveal those locations at this time but we will put out information closer to those moments, so people can look out for news on that on our (’UK in Malaysia’) social media channels (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram),” she said.

Treadell also encouraged the public to look out for updates and information, as well as to post on their social media using the #MYUK60 and #RoyalVisitMY hashtags.

Budget 2018 expected to bring in RM350 billion – Master Builders Association Malaysia

Posted on : 02-11-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

KUALA LUMPUR: Construction projects worth RM350 billion are expected to come onstream over the next two to three years with the announcement of Budget 2018.

Master Builders Association Malaysia (MBAM) president, Foo Chek Lee said outstanding projects in the construction industry are estimated to be worth at least RM138 billion currently.

He said while Budget 2018 did not specifically mention allocations for the construction industry, the government had allocated RM2.2 billion for public housing projects such as 1Malaysia People’s Housing Programme (PR1MA).

“Affordable housing projects under Budget 2018 like PR1MA, apart from rail transportation projects such as Mass Rapid Transit Line 3 or Circle Line, among others, will definitely spur the construction industry in Malaysia and stimulate economic growth,” he told a press conference on the sidelines of the MBAM Building and Construction Conference 2017 here, today.

Also present were Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) chairman, Tan Sri Dr Ir Ahmad Tajuddin Ali and Eversendai Corporation Bhd executive chairman and group managing director, Tan Sri A. K. Nathan.

Earlier, Ahmad Tajuddin in his opening speech lauded the government for stepping up measures by making it mandatory for all private projects to use industrialised building system (IBS) for projects valued at RM50 million or more in three years’ time.

“By declaring this new mandate in advance, industry players can prepare themselves to meet the deadline by developing or acquiring the necessary skills and resources to embrace the technology,” he said.

Ahmad Tajuddin added that the target had also been set as one of the key performance indicators under the productivity thrust of the Construction Industry Transformation Programme 2016-2020.

On another note, Foo in his welcoming speech hoped the government would offer incentives to industry players who use IBS and Building Information Modelling (BIM).

“We also hope that the government will support us in our efforts by providing a subsidy for companies to adopt BIM.

“I believe through everyone’s effort, the implementation of IBS can run smoothly. With the effective implementation of IBS products, it will not only reduce the usage of building materials that are inflicting the environment, but can also lead to reducing our dependency on foreign workers,” he said.

BIM is a process of creating and managing all of the information related to a construction project and producing it in a three-dimensional model, making it possible to integrate different aspects of the design more effectively, while reducing costly mistakes and discrepancies.

Themed “Technology Advancement with Stakeholders Collaboration,” the three-day conference beginning today was co-organised by MBAM and CIDB to highlight issues, challenges, as well as the latest developments in the construction industry.

SOURCE— BERNAMA

PM: Malaysia-Qatar trade relations date back 43 years

Posted on : 17-10-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

PUTRAJAYA – Bilateral relations between Malaysia and Qatar, especially in the trade sector has not been affected despite the Middle Eastern nation facing a crisis with other Gulf Countries, as relations between the two countries had been well established for the past 43 years, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

He said Malaysia was known as a country which had good cooperation with all countries, as well as in the context of Muslim nations, by practising the principle of ‘wasatiyyah’ (moderation).

Najib said although Malaysia had a special relationship with Saudi Arabia, which had cut diplomatic relations with Qatar last June, Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim Hamad Al-Thani’s visit to Malaysia has not raised any problem.

Najib said he was confident the Saudi government understood Malaysia’s stand.

“We will continue to maintain the relationship (with Saudi Arabia) at its best, but this does not prevent us from having ties, especially economic relations with Qatar,” he said in a press conference after meeting Sheikh Tamim Hamad at Seri Perdana here, today.

Also present were Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman and Minister with Special Functions in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussien.

On June 5, five Gulf nations, namely Saudi Arabia, Egypt, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Yemen announced the decision to break ties with Qatar, on grounds that the country supported terrorism.

Asked whether the Emir of Qatar had asked Malaysia to become the mediator between Qatar and Saudi Arabia, Najib said: “It may be beyond Malaysia’s capacity to become a mediator or offer itself as a mediator. But they (Qatar) know, Malaysia is a country that they can rely on in playing a positive part to the conflict’s resolution, in matters of principle,” he said.

Najib said during the meeting, the two also discussed cooperation on anti-terrorism and security.

He said the Emir of Qatar was serious about fighting terrorism, and hoped for a continued cooperation with Malaysia to address the issue.

“The Rohingya issue was also discussed, in which Qatar is aware that Malaysia is at the forefront of helping the Rohingyas, as well as in the construction of a ‘field hospital’ at Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh.

“I also raised Qatar’s promise to contribute USD 50 million (for the Rohingya) during the Deputy Prime Minister’s (Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi) visit to Qatar, and the mechanism of how the donation can be channelled will now be determined,” he said.

SOURCE– BERNAMA

Robotics competition” Platform to produce science, tech experts

Posted on : 15-10-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Combat Robotics Competition 2017 will be able to promote innovative science engineering and technology among students thereby producing more experts in the field said Deputy Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Datuk Dr Abu Bakar Mohamad Diah.

He said the competition was an important platform in ensuring continuous succession of experts in the field as they are among the key drivers of growth for the nation.

“Previously the robotics field was probably not important but students must be encouraged to love science if we want to produce more scientists,” he told reporters after the prize presentation ceremony here yesterday.

A total of 25 public and private higher learning institutions participated in the robotics competition which required participants to produce custom-built machines to battle one another in a special arena.

‘Adtec B’ team from Advance Technology Training Centre (ADTEC) emerged champion while ‘KKTMPJ’  from Mara Advanced Technology College in Petaling Jaya and ‘Adtec A’ won second and third placing respectively.

Abu Bakar said the competition was also aimed at raising positive perception among the community and to make students more optimistic in choosing Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) as career fields.

SOURCE— BERNAMA

Easing migration policies can boost workers’ welfare

Posted on : 10-10-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

Kuala Lumpur: Easing curbs on labour migration policies can boost workers’ welfare and economic growth in Association of South-East Asian Nations (Asean), said a World Bank report.

In a statement Monday, it said, intra-regional migration in Asean increased significantly between 1995 and 2015, turning Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand into regional migration hubs with 6.5 million migrants.

“The figure represents 96 per cent of the total number of migrant workers in Asean, as stated by the ‘Migrating to Opportunity’ report,” it said.

World Bank Chief Economist for the East Asia and Pacific region, Sudhir Shetty, said the Asean Economic Community had taken steps to facilitate the migrant’s mobility, but the regulations only covered certain skilled professions, such as doctors, dentists, nurses, engineers, architects, accountants and tourism professionals, or just five per cent of jobs in the region.

“With the right policy choices, the home countries can reap the economic benefits from the out-migration, while protecting their migrating citizens.

“Foreign workers can fill labour shortages and promote sustained economic growth in receiving countries, if migration policies are aligned with their economic needs. Inappropriate policies and ineffective institutions mean that the region is missing opportunities to gain fully from migration,” he said.

The report said barriers such as costly and lengthy recruitment processes, restrictive quotas on the number of foreign workers allowed in a country, and rigid employment policies restricts workers’ employment options and impacts their welfare.

These restrictive policies were partly influenced by the perception that an influx of migrants would have negative impacts on receiving economies, it said.

“However, there is evidence to the contrary. In Malaysia, simulations find that a 10 per cent net increase in low-skilled immigrant workers increases real gross domestic product (GDP) by 1.1 per cent, while Thailand’s GDP would fall by 0.75 per cent without migrants in the labour force,” it said.

The World Bank said that a range of policies could be implemented to enhance workers’ mobility, adding that there should be more supervision of recruitment agencies across the region.

It said Malaysia could adjust its migration policies to the country’s economic needs, including revising its current levy system and deepening coordination with sending countries.

SOURCE– BERNAMA

Prince Charles and Camilla to visit Malaysia (Nov 3, Gala Dinner celebrating 60 years diplomatic ties between the UK and Malaysia)

Posted on : 05-10-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

PETALING JAYA: Britain’s Prince Charles and wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, will be travelling to Penang, Perak and Sarawak during their maiden visit to Malaysia next month.

Their first official visit here is part of an 11-day tour of South-East Asia that will include Singapore and India.

“On Nov 3, the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall will start their visit to Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur.

“Key events in the programme include a gala dinner celebrating 60 years of diplomatic ties between Britain and Malaysia, attended by senior dignitaries as well as key figures from business, arts, culture and media,” said the British High Commission in a statement yesterday.

The programme includes a celebration of the Commonwealth in the lead-up to the Commonwealth Summits to be held in Britain next year and in Malaysia in 2020.

The Prince and Duchess will then head to Sarawak and Perak, where they will see firsthand the work being done to promote wildlife conservation and the protection of biodiversity.

“Their Royal Highnesses will also meet members of Sarawak’s diverse indigenous communities.

“Also, the Duchess will meet with representatives of Purple Lily, an NGO committed to inspiring and empowering disadvantaged women and young girls by providing life skills training and financial education,” the statement said.

The visit will end in Penang, which was originally named Prince of Wales Island.

“The Prince and Duchess will have the opportunity to meet members of different religious and ethnic communities who live side by side in the Unesco World Heritage site and to experience the rich cultural heritage,” said the High Commission.

British High Commissioner to Malaysia Vicki Treadell said the visit would undoubtedly be the highlight of the celebration of 60 years of diplomatic ties.

“We are also very pleased that their Royal Highnesses will have the opportunity to meet Malaysians and experience the rich cultural diversity and heritage here,” she said.
SOURCE:- THE STAR

M’sia rakes in over RM1b medical tourism revenue

Posted on : 02-10-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

MALAYSIA is on track to achieve medical tourism revenue of RM1.15 billion by the end of the year.

Deputy Health Minister Dr Hilmi Yahaya said the success behind the medical tourism boom was due to solid support from the government.

“In 2011, 643,000 of overseas visitors had travelled to Malaysia for medical purposes. The number increased to 921,000 in 2016, with the revenue growing by more than 10% per year,” he said while officiating KPJ Damansara Specialist Hospital’s 20th anniversary celebration.

Support from the private healthcare sector had also helped to boost local medical tourism as they provided affordable and quality treatment for their patients, Dr Hilmi said, adding that  medical tourism was part of the 12 National Key Economic Areas (NKEA) which would drive the country towards becoming a high-income nation by 2020.

“These have contributed to Malaysia’s current position as one of the best countries in the world for healthcare and is recognised by International Medical Travel Journal from year 2015 to 2017,” he said.

Dr Hilmi said to date, 74 of the best private hospitals in the country were registered with the Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council (MHTC).

In conjunction with KPJ Damansara’s 20th anniversary, the hospital has also launched a corporate social responsibility programme under #DamansaraCare.

The hospital’s executive director, Aminuddin Dawam said the fundraising campaign would benefit three beneficiaries, namely the Islamic Medical Association Malaysia Response and Relief Team (Imaret), Mercy Malaysia and Malaysia Relief Agency (MRA).

For the CSR effort, various community-oriented programmes will be held such as the social media campaign called #LoveSlapDSH where participants will pledge donations to collect more than RM1 million for each beneficiary.

SOURCE:- BERNAMA

Najib announces RM7m in grants or farmers, breeders, fishermen

Posted on : 29-09-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

SERDANG— Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today announced one-off grants of RM30,000 for every Area Farmers Organisation and Area Fishermen’s Organisation.

He said the grants, totalling RM7 million, would benefit one million farmers, breeders and fishermen who were members of these organisations.

The grant was provided in appreciation of the efforts of those who supplied the nation’s food, he said when launching the National Farmers, Breeders and Fishermen’s Day 2017 (HPPNK2017) and Malaysia Food Festival at the Malaysia Agro Exposition Park Serdang here.

Najib’s wife, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, and Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek were also present at the opening of the four-day HPPNK2017 which has the theme ‘Our Food, Our Future’.

“Toiling as farmers, breeders and fishermen to provide the people with food is a noble task and the contribution of these groups of people, who are dear to me, must be honoured,” Najib said.

The Prime Minister said the agriculture and agro-food sector contributed RM89.3 billion and RM36.5 billion, respectively, to the Gross Domestic Product in 2016.

He also said that the production of major food commodities such as paddy, vegetables, fruits, meat and fish registered an encouraging growth of 3.9 per cent per annum from 2011 to 2016.

Najib, who is also the Finance Minister, said the grants, which had been approved by the Finance Ministry, would revitalise the leadership of area farmers and fishermen’s organisations to bring further development to the respective sectors.

The country has 278 area farmers organisations and 88 area fishermen’s organisations.

The Prime Minister said agricultural industry players had to adopt a global view and create wealth through the sector instead of just remaining at the local level and regarding farming, breeding livestock and fishing as being enough just to survive.

Although the potential of the agricultural industry had yet to be fully realised, the seeds of success were evident due to the global demand for durian, bird nests, herbs and seaweed which had become the country’s premium products, he said.

Najib said his visits to China had opened up a new market for agricultural products, especially for the durian that had been allowed to be exported there, besides attracting investments to the tune of RM144 billion to Malaysia.

He said that during one of his visits, he personally asked Chinese leaders to allow Malaysia’s export of durian to China which, he added, resulted in traders of the ‘Musang King’ variety of durian harvesting huge profits when the export value exceeded RM100 per kg.

The success deflected the slander by the political opposition that he had sold off the country’s sovereignty when his visits had actually yielded benefits for the people, he said.

SOURCE— BERNAMA