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Leverage digital technology to unlock potential, communications minister tells creative industry

Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa speak at the launch of ‘Cendana Art in The City 2021’ in Kuala Lumpur September 30, 2021. – Picture by Firdaus Latif

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PUTRAJAYA, Oct 14 — The development of the creative industry can be accelerated by firstly maximising the industry’s potential, said Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa.

He said it can be achieved by leveraging on Malaysian creativity and digital technology, while preserving invaluable national culture, arts and heritage.

“We will be developing a conducive ecosystem for the creative landscape, upscaling our talent to match the needs of the industry, as well as strengthening our product development and promotion initiatives,” he said at the virtual Kuala Lumpur Creative Economy Forum (KUL.CEF 2021) and kick-off of the Art In The City (AITC) 2021 today.

He said the growth enablers will increase revenue and job opportunities, as well as bolster local distinctive cultural identities, paving the way for Malaysia to become a renowned exporter and leader of the creative fields.

“Personally, in my purview as minister, I hope to see the industry strengthen through a strategic plan, a coordinated effort across the public and private sectors, a database approach in scaling up the sectors, and patient capital to grow this creative economy of Malaysia.

“This must be done immediately via the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia and its agencies including the Cultural Economy Development Agency (Cendana) and MyCreative Ventures,” he added.

In addition, Annuar said he also hopes to see more strategic programmes that help build on successful local precedents such as Upin & Ipin, Ejen Ali and Didi & Friends which had made their mark both locally and globally.

“It is time, now more than ever, to spur the growth of the industry and it requires an out-of-the-box approach or approaches which we can borrow from others who have done very well.

“We can localise these approaches here at home to create a conducive ecosystem to ensure the industry becomes an engine of social inclusivity, (leading to) creation of jobs, and potentially economic gains for the nation,” he said.

Annuar said with 2021 being the International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development, there is much to harness from cultural and creative stories and assets.

“We already have close to 900,000 Malaysians employed in the creative economy and that is a big number. Indeed more can be done and I believe more should be done.

“The 12th Malaysia Plan aims to boost the creative sector’s contribution to national Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by almost 20 per cent over the next five years, from RM26.8 billion in 2020 to RM31.9 billion by 2025.

“There is a huge role for the government to play in facilitating this growth. It does not only require policymakers of the country, but also corporations and the content creators, to play an important role in developing the country’s creative economy, especially post-Covid-19,” he said.

After more than a year’s hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Cendana, a unit of MyCreative Ventures, aims to reach out, restart, revive and rebuild the nation via the arts and culture sector via one of its leading arts platforms in engaging with the public, AITC 2021.

AITC 2021 will kick off with the KUL.CEF Forum on Oct 14, held virtually.

KUL.CEF forum is a follow-up online conversation from the Creative Economy Forum that took place in October 2020. It is a Malaysian event to commemorate the International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development.

KUL.CEF aims to focus on increasing the participation of the private sectors in contributing to the development of arts and culture in Malaysia. — Bernama

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