KUALA TERENGGANU: Beginning from January next year, all original handwoven Terengganu songket will be given serial numbers and have the exclusive label as verification of their authentic quality.
The serial numbers and exclusive label will be used as the trademark for authentic handwoven Terengganu songket in a move to preserve it and is an initiative by the Terengganu International Design Excellence (TiDE), the Terengganu Malaysian Handicraft Development Corporation (MHDC) and Terengganu Entrepreneur Development Foundation (YPU).
MHDC Terengganu deputy director Suhaimi Zakaria said the use of the exclusive label and serial number is also intended to address the entry of inferior quality songket from countries like India, Pakistan and Indonesia into the country.
“It will also prevent fraud against buyers who pay the price for original handwoven Terengganu songket but get cheap songket from other countries,” he told reporters after the launch of the logo for the songket by YPU chief executive officer Dr Tengku Khairi Rahman here.
A total of 26 songket entrepreneurs in Terengganu obtained the Malaysia Standard Songket Certification MS 1747 in April this year and would start using the logo next year.
Meanwhile, TiDE assistant manager Suraya Shaari said the handover of the Geographical Indicator (GI) certificates and the registration of songket trademark certificate by the Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia (MyIPO) was conducted early this year.
“We welcome more songket entrepreneurs in Terengganu to obtain the MS 1747 standard certificate so that they can use the label and serial number for their original handwoven songket.
“Applications can be made through TiDE and we will refer it to the Terengganu Handicraft because they have the technical expertise to identify the authenticity of a songket based on several criteria such as the quality of the raw materials used.
“The entrepreneurs will then be informed whether their applications are approved, and if successful they will receive the label and serial number according to the number of the songket that they will be able to produce,” he said.
Meanwhile, Manang Songket Sdn Bhd managing director Wan Manang Wan Awang said the state government’s commitment was timely given that there were many inferior quality songket from other countries being sold as original songket.
“Regrettably, traders did not inform buyers about the difference between original handwoven Terengganu songket and those imported from abroad by selling the latter at the same price as original songket.
“The victim here is the buyer who does not know the difference in terms of quality between original songket and the synthetic ones.
“With this exclusive logo, entrepreneurs of original handwoven Terengganu songket will be able to guarantee the best quality songket to customers,” said Wan Manang who has been in the industry for 40 years. — Bernama