CENDANA's Strategic Partnerships' to Spur Malaysia's Cultural Economy

Published on 7 February 2018

The Cultural Economy Development Agency (CENDANA) today announced a two-pronged launch at Bursa Malaysia, officiated by YB Datuk Seri Dr. Salleh Said Keruak, Minister of Communications and Multimedia (KKMM): the launch of the Kuala Lumpur as a Cultural and Creative City report, and Art in the City. Synergistic collaboration between agencies and public and private organisations will be crucial to cultivate growth of cultural economy, whilst positioning Kuala Lumpur as an internationally-recognised cultural and creative city.

The report was commissioned by CENDANA, KKMM, Yayasan Hasanah, Yayasan Sime Darby, Think City, MyCreative Ventures, British Council Malaysia and was undertaken by a consortium comprising of My Performing Arts Agency, Frost & Sullivan Malaysia, and Tom Fleming Creative Consultancy, a leading international expert on the cultural and creative economy.

Officiating the launch, YB Datuk Seri Dr. Salleh Said Keruak, Minister of Communications and Multimedia said, “The creative economy is one of the most rapidly growing sectors of the world economy. It is highly transformative in terms of income generation, job creation and export earnings. It also generates non-monetary value that reflects a nation's capacity to express itself artistically and creatively through its home-grown culture and heritage - whether these be films, music, literature, theatre and the arts generally that can be shared with the world. The Kuala Lumpur Cultural and Creative Economy report will set the tone for a 5-year actionable plan that will increase the current GDP contribution of KL to RM19.4 billion and create more than 125,000 jobs.”

YB Datuk Seri Dr. Salleh Said Keruak added, “There is a direct link between the cultural sector to the creative industries. The cultural sector is the heartbeat and core to the creative economy. It is the fuel to the creative sector and will nurture the soul of the nation."

Reinforcing the zeal to propel Malaysia’s status within cultural economy, Izan Satrina Dato’ Mohd Sallehuddin, Founding CEO, CENDANA said, “The Malaysian government is taking unprecedented steps to elevate the voices of the arts and culture communities via the establishment of CENDANA. Plans to energise the landscape via stimulating demand for the arts, empowering the communities by improving circumstances for individual artists and arts groups but also, on a larger scale, to refine existing policies and to make investment in the arts more attractive to corporations are currently on the way. Within the past six months, public arts programming, artists mobility, trade engagement, art development funding programme, capacity building efforts were implemented.”

She added, “The encouraging commitments from Media Prima TV Networks, ASTRO, Yayasan Hasanah, Think City, Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation, Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Centre and other strategic partners are a joint effort to move the needle in the right areas for the cultural sector. The next five years will be exciting as we mobilise our assets to develop, promote and present our cultural assets to wider audiences and working together with the public and private stakeholders to achieve a collective impact.”

The report identifies five building blocks for the Kuala Lumpur Cultural and Creative Economy, which include: (1) Cultural and creative education; (2) Creative hubs and infrastructure; (3) Nurturing the market; (4) Business support and investment; and, (5) Creative place-making and tourism. The report further outlines key sectors in Malaysia’s arts scene, detailing the overview, challenges and opportunities, sharing case studies in addition to providing an overview what drives Malaysians to engage or consume the arts.

In response to the report, Art in the City, an outdoor art display that gathers artworks and contributions across Malaysia’s art scene to raise greater awareness of the visual imagery and vibrancy of Kuala Lumpur was also announced today – a collaboration between CENDANA and Dewan Bandaraya Kuala Lumpur, Bursa Malaysia, Maybank Foundation, New Straits Times Press, Balai Seni Negara and 1M4U. To continue being inclusive and relevant, CENDANA is calling Malaysian visual artists to submit artworks that can be in the form of painting, photography and visual design that contain relevance to Malaysia in contributing diverse cultural expression and allowing engagement with audience by exposing differing perspectives, or foster increased understanding of the arts. Submission is to close on 9 March 2018.

The undertone that threads the success of the KL as a Cultural and Creative City report is the essential collaboration between private and public sector’s investments and management. Within the 5-year agenda, CENDANA will position Malaysia as a vibrant and inspiring centre for the arts. CENDANA is identified as an enabler that will provide the impetus for medium and long-term sustainable growth to position Kuala Lumpur as an internationally recognised creative city, and one that can be proudly shared with all Malaysians. For more information, log on to www.cendana.com.my

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