Category Archives: Government

Malacca Casa Cuba

Malaysia’s Casa Cuba exposure to Cuban culture

Cuba is a republic in the Caribbean, known for producing high quality cigars.

The Cuban Embassy in Malaysia is giving an idea of the unique blend of culture by the Casa Cuba, a showroom in Bukit Peringgit, Melaka.

Malacca Casa Cuba

The Cuban ambassador to Malaysia, Carlos A. Amores and Malacca Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam at the Melaka launch of The Friends of Cuba Association Malaysia in Casa Cuba, Bukit Peringgit on April 21. Photo source:

The gallery, founded in June 2007 as the residence of former senior government officials during the British colonial. This is one of Malacca’s historical sites.

Second Secretary (Political Affairs) in Malaysia Cuban Embassy Nestor Tores, told that the Casa Cuba has an important role in the introducing Malaysia to Cuban culture.

The beauty of Cuba’s art gallery with various forms of art by Cuban artists, including paintings, prints and ceramic works.

Tores said the embassy has more than 80 works of renowned Cuban artists such as Nelson Dominguez and Belkis Ayón Manso.

Belkis is a Cuban artist and lithographer who worked on the basis of Afro-Cuban religion, brings the myth and tradition of Abakuá man secret society.

Since her death, the Cuban government said it was a heritage, and therefore not allowed to leave the country.

“Therefore, it is a privilege that his works were allowed to be in Malaysia, as part of the exhibition,” says Tores.

The main exhibition room features paintings, including portraits of Fidel Castro, and photos of youth baseball game, a very popular sport in the Republic.

In addition to paintings, the gallery also has many forms of prints. An interesting feature of the exhibition of prints on silk.

In Malaysia, one of the favorites in the traditional art of batik textiles are usually printed on silk. It’s like in Cuba where the silk print is one of the most popular traditional arts.

He said that the gallery featured miniatures that describes life in Cuba. Among them are those that describe the environment in a traditional snuff mill, and the Cuban popular entertainment.

When asked why Melaka chosen as the venue for the Casa Cuba, Tores said it was just a tourist attraction because of Malacca is well developed.

It is hoped that the establishment of the Casa Cuba in Melaka will bring more local and foreign visitors to the gallery, and their interest towards the republic.

Tores said that besides the introduction of Cuban culture, the gallery is also where the embassy held various activities to create closer ties between Cuba and Malaysia.

“We are grateful to the Melaka government to help bring more tourists to the gallery, so they can learn more about Cuba,” he said.

Melaka Chief Minister, Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam said there are historic buildings on Bukit Peringgit. Most of them came from colonial times.

“If possible, I want all the embassies in the country to build their “home” here. Besides the creation of a gallery, they can also organize the program to introduce their country. More appropriate for this area is to be known as “Bukit Antarabangsa” he said.

He said, Casa Cuba is an initiative to strengthen ties between Malaysia and Cuba through cultural exchanges.

Casa Cuba is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 to 5:00.

RM 1 Coin Cease to be Legal Tender on 7 December 2005

Bank Negara Malaysia would like to remind members of the public that the RM1 coin will cease to be legal tender effective 7 December 2005 and may no longer be used for any transactions.

As the three-month period for the withdrawal of the RM 1 coin ends on 6 December 2005, all branches of commercial banks and Bank Simpanan Nasional state main branches will no longer accept the exchange of RM 1 coins.

However, members of the public who have yet to exchange their RM 1 coins can still do so at Bank Negara Malaysia Head Office in Kuala Lumpur and its branches in Pulau Pinang, Johor Bahru, Kuala Terengganu, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu until further notice.

Further details on the withdrawal of the RM1 coin can be obtained from the Bank Negara Malaysia’s website ( or by contacting the Currency Management and Operations Department of Bank Negara Malaysia at 03-2698 8044 ext. 7417.

Leatherback turtle hatchlings make their way into the sea after being released from a turtle sanctuary in Kemaman on the eastern state of Terengganu late 17 August 2004. Several populations of sea turtles in Malaysia.

Malaysian turtle populations could soon be extinct

Some sea turtles population in Malaysia is on the verge of collapse and could soon become extinct unless urgent action is taken, scientists warned.

Leatherback turtle hatchlings make their way into the sea after being released from a turtle sanctuary in Kemaman on the eastern state of Terengganu late 17 August 2004.

“ There was a dramatic drop in the number sea turtles Malaysia last year,”the scientists said in a statement after a conference here, near one of the few nesting beaches are protected on the east coast of Malaysia.

“ Many of the populations at risk of extinction and could disappear in a few years if no immediate and effective action.”

The most vulnerable species are leatherback, olive ridley and hawksbill, international tourists whose ancestors roamed the seas for over 200 million years.

X1y1zs Malaysia was once one of the most abundant of the world’s population and Terrenganu state beach here is one of 10 major nesting sites globally for the gentle giant sailors peeled.

“ The number leatherback nests in Terengganu has fallen to alarming levels: from over 10,000 a few decades ago to less than 10 last year, while population and hawksbill olive ridley in other parts of the country is critically low levels ,”the experts said.

The conference was called by Worldfish Centre, an international research group based in Malaysia and funded by private foundations and government, to draw up national action plans as part of global efforts to prevent deaths Some species of sea turtle.

The conference was attended by over 40 specialists from Malaysia, the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Australia and the United States delegation stressed the need for international cooperation of the turtle knows no national boundaries.

Main theme of the conference is that while the Pacific sea turtles is “ serious problems … They can still be saved.”

One of the biggest problems Malaysia is to harvest turtle eggs laid on the beach. If the hatchlings do not make them in water they face a myriad of threats from entanglement in fishing nets, illegal harvesting for food and shell and the destruction of places to eat it.

However, the scientists showed that the experience in other parts of the world shows that the “ sea turtle populations can bounce back with proper management”, citing the success stories of the protected beach in the Gulf of Mexico and South Africa.

“ While leatherback Pacific now the most endangered turtle in the world,”to protect the eggs in St. Croix in the Caribbean “ has resulted in an exponential increase in the number leatherbacks bersarang”-from about 20 in 1982 to allow the way now.”

The scientists proposed 15-point strategy for Malaysia, including a better effort to provide alternative sources of income for those who harvest turtle eggs for sale, the “ effective laws and policies strategis Dan”generate more nesting sites for asylum.

They note that the Terengganu state government has agreed on the sheet 60 hectares (148 acres) of beach and coastal habitats in captivity Ma’Daerah nearby as a refuge. This beach is used mainly by nesting green turtle.

The scientists concluded that “ while there is still hope, crucial for Malaysia to maintain the population of green turtles and hawksbill olive ridley leatherbacks before their fate.”

Malaysia fully committed to sustainable forest management

Malaysia is fully committed to sustainable forest management and practices.

“I wish to emphasise that Malaysia is fully committed to the principle of sustainable forest management,” Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Adenan Satem   told an international conference of sustainable management of tropical forests.

“Malaysia is highly forested although this may not be so obvious if you confine yourself to Kuala Lumpur,” he told the conference being attended by delegates from the Asia-Pacific, African, Latin American and the Carribean regions.

Adenan said almost 60 percent of Malaysia’s land mass of 32.8 million hectares was forested and the figure increased to 77 percent if rubber and oil palm were to be included.

He said Malaysia’s sustainable forest management practices had reached the level of confidence to be subjected to third party independent auditing for timber certification.

“Buyers of tropical timber around the world are demanding that the timber they buy is not a product of destructive logging. Timber certification gives them that assurance,” he added.

The three-day conference is focusing on the experiences of the private sector in implementing sustainable forest management.

Adenan noted that the role and efforts of the private sector in sustainable forest management were often misunderstood and not fully appreciated.

“The tropical forests are complex in nature. Their sustainable management with social, environment and economic dimensions are equally if not more complex,” he said.

“No wonder progress has been slow and often the private sector receives the brunt of the blame.”

“Land of hornbills” lure for German tourists

Realizing the tremendous potential of Sarawak has among tourists from Germany and the European Union (EU) countries, Minister of Tourism Datuk Seri Abang Johari Tun Openg launched a three times weekly Frankfurt-Kuching direct flight.

Abang Johari said the habit of spending by the Bavarians and Frankfurt is the central location in Western Europe has led him to choose the city as a “hub” to promote Sarawak.

He said Frankfurt hosts numerous international conferences and trade fairs every year like the Frankfurt Automobile Show and the International Book Fair can be used to promote Sarawak.

“During this event we can more or less promote Sarawak and is anticipated to increase interest (between Germany and other European) state,” he said.

He said some 190 airlines are stopping at Frankfurt, “so, anyone who wants to fly to Sarawak can go to Frankfurt and board MAS flight direct to Kuching.”

Abang Johari expected Frankfurt-Kuching direct flight to bring another 50,000 tourists from Europe to Sarawak annually.

Last year 200,000 European visited Sarawak, he said.

“However, in Kuching we only have some 2,800 hotel rooms and is always full, but I personally make sure that tourists from Germany and Europe are comfortable (in Sarawak).,” He said.

Abang Johari was optimistic that Sarawak will reach 5,000,000 visitors this year, a year earlier than the target because it is expected influx of tourists from Germany and other European Union countries.

He also advised residents to take advantage of the Sarawak-Kuching direct flight Frankfurt to go to Germany as a country that offered a variety of business and other opportunities.

Malaysian Ambassador to German, Datuk Kamal Ismaun said the German enjoy the summer between May and September and during other months, they go elsewhere to escape the cold.

“Every time they go abroad, they spend between 10 and 14 days in destination and these include the big-spending tourists,” he told Bernama here.

“What they want most when they go abroad to relax on the beach and playing water sports like jet skiing, kayaking and swimming and is a sport that Sarawak should provide to attract German, “he said.

Kamal said the Germans preferred natural environments such as tropical forests, caves, rivers, wildlife and culture and customs of the places they visited.

If invited to Malaysia, they ask if they can see the Orang Utan, said Kamal.

He said after the setback caused by the September 11 attacks and the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), the German who showed interest to visit Asia and it should be capitalized by Malaysia, particularly Sarawak, to attract tourists.

If Michael Schumacher for the Formula One race in Sepang come and International circuit, it can be difficult to persuade the other Germans who came to Malaysia because many of them love a challenge, he said.

Kamal said the factors that could work in favor of Malaysia is that most Germans are fluent in English as a subject they are studying for five years during their secondary school education.

Set realistic, achievable actions to reduce loss of natural habitat

All of the 187 parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) should immediately address the loss of natural habitats and species extinction by setting realistic and achievable actions.

Malaysian Environmental Non-Government Organizations (Mengos) chairman Dr Loh Chi Leong said Wednesday that delegates to the upcoming seventh Conference of Parties (COP7) and the First Meeting of the Parties (MOP1) of the CBD should take advantage of the meeting was to organize an effective action and timetables for reducing the level of loss of biodiversity by 2010.

He said that in the World Summit on Sustainable Development 2002, heads of state and government agreed to achieve the goal.

“Mengos want to join other parties and concerned citizens worldwide expansion of our concerns even though many activities and accomplishments of the member nations of the convention, the result is that after 10 years, the rate of species extinction and loss of natural habitat is actually increased rather than decreased, “he told a media conference on the future and MOP1 COP7 here.

Malaysia will host COP7 and MOP1 CBD on February 9 to 20 and February 23 to 27 respectively in the Putra World Trade Centre. Between 2000 and 2500 participants from 187 countries will attend conferences and meetings.

Mengos is an integration of 18 NGOs, was established under the Danish International Development Assistance (Danida)-supported aid program in the Malaysian environment.

Dr Loh said the situation in Malaysia reflects what is happening in many other countries in the world.

“Malaysia has developed a National Policy on biodiversity and conservation policies and action plans, the number of protected areas has increased and there are laws to help promote conservation.

“However, we continue to see the encroachment, conflicting land use, lack of law enforcement and poor management of protected areas and habitats, sectoral approaches and poor coordination among the institutions that caused the loss of species.

“Malaysia, being one of the 12 mega biodiversity countries in the world with at least 15,000 species of flowering plants, 286 mammals and 4,000 species of marine fish, the reverse side of the coin is that countries are also quickly become one the leading countries in terms of number of species of animals and plants are threatened and endangered species, “he said.

Dr. Loh, who is also executive director of the Malaysian Nature Society, said many unique ecosystems and habitats, including mangroves, freshwater wetlands, limestone hills and high plains ecosystem in Malaysia, is under threat of disappearing rapidly due to aquaculture , resort urbanization, land reclamation and soil.

Rather than approach one by one taken by the authorities, he said, caution should be made a priority issue in all areas of management issues including trade, business and social.