Saturday, March 14, 2009

Develop Creativity Into An Industry: Shabery

What a busy month March is... the KL Design Week is at the end of this month. Plus it seems there is a Creative Industry Conference organised by the Ministry of Information on the 16-17 MAR 2009 at Nikko Hotel, KL that will discuss matters of government policy, infrastructure to support & develop the creative industry. So... Malaysia finally jumps into the Creative Economy bandwagon right when the recession hits? Better late than never, right?

latest news from BERNAMA:

KUALA LUMPUR, March 12 -- The creative industry should be restructured and expanded to make it a sector that can contribute to the country's economic growth, Information Minister Datuk Ahmad Shabery Cheek said today. He said the industry had great potential to be developed because besides having people with natural creative talent Malaysia had also produced many graduates in this from its local institutions. "It is difficult to define this industry because it is different from the manufacturing and construction industry where we can see the physical results.

"The end product of human creativity can only be linked to the contribution it makes to the country's economic growth and the creation of job opportunities and income for those involved in the field. But if carefully structured and expanded, it can become a big industry. "This is what is lacking in our country. Our society is creative but this field has yet to become an industry," he said in a interview on TV3's "Malaysia Hari Ini" (MHI) programme on the Creative Industry Conference which the ministry is organising on March 15 and 16.

The conference is aimed, among others, at providing a channel for the sharing of information and ideas among those involved in the creative industry, technology providers and policy makers, both local and foreign, on the future of the industry in Malaysia. Themed "Creative Industry: A New Dimension for Economic Development", the inaugural conference is expected to be attended by about 500 participants, including tertiary students and suppliers of films and dramas.

Ahmad Shabery said the creative industry could follow the footsteps of the agricultural sector which, after its restructure, expansion and change of mindset, became a business entity and industry that made a big contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). He said the creative industry in Malaysia was still lagging behind that in other countries which contributed up to nine per cent of their countries' GDP. "We don't know how much the creative industry in our country contributes to the GDP. Some say it's not even one per cent, so it's difficult for us to gauge. The potential's there but it's not being developed," he said.

Shabery hoped that the people and policy makers would see the importance of the creative industry not only from the aspect of job opportunities by also the products. He also said that the banks could help in the development of the industry by providing financial aid to the industry players to develop their talent and creativity to reach the global level. The RM20 million injection by the government through its second stimulus package was a fund that could be used to enhance the creative industry, he said. Besides that, Radio Televisyen Malaysia's (RTM) new 24-hour entertainment channel, Muzik Aktif, to be aired over 180 Astro from next Thursday could serve as a platform for creative practitioners to display their talents, including through video clips in its various programmes, he added.

Shabery said it was hoped that the conference would mould a new mindset in the society to better understand the Creative Economy (C-Economy). "We hope the word C-Economy will become a household word in the society. We will monitor the progress of the C-Economy in the country and this is a platform that we have built," he added.

source: BERNAMA

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