Rising to Covid-19 challenge


Chow (second left) presenting the Most Impactful Tourism Leadership And Innovation Award 2020 to state tourism, art, culture and heritage committee chairman Yeoh Soon Hin (centre). With them is Tong.

CONTRIBUTING to public health and economic recovery in the post-Covid-19 era is vital both at the state and national level, according to Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow.

Among the challenges for entrepreneurs were regaining consumers’ confidence and pivoting business activities.

“The pandemic hit us suddenly in the first quarter of 2020 and none of us were spared from its dire consequences, ” he said at the 7th International Most Impactful Awards Ceremony and Luncheon at a hotel in George Town.

“Many businesses have gone bust, jobs lost and the return to normality is not at the pace we wish for.

“Covid-19 exposed our vulnerabilities in personal well-being and financial management.

“It mocked our long-held belief that the days of wine and roses would never end.

“It is crucial that we do not suffer from the pandemic in vain.

“There must be proper reconfiguration of our skills and enhancement of our business acumen once the pandemic is over, ” said Chow.

The awards event was attended by some 300 guests either physically or virtually.

A total of 43 awards were given to impactful entrepreneurs and individuals across various fields.

The event was aimed at recognising outstanding small and medium enterprises as well as entrepreneurs and distinguished individuals who made immense contributions while upholding outstanding brand management through pragmatic entrepreneurship.

The awards recognised those providing the most impactful service including rising stars and celebrities, among other things.

Chow said the winners’ perseverance would inspire others.

Penang trade and industry committee chairman Datuk Abdul Halim Hussain, who was present, believed that the awards would encourage more businesses to come forward and contribute to the economy and society.

“Covid-19 has caused many businesses to close.

“However, the pandemic will teach entrepreneurs to come back stronger.

“We hope the state together with the community can rise to the challenge and lift the economy.

“It is not easy to create jobs so we are pleased to give recognition to those who create jobs, ” he added.

Meanwhile, awards organising chairman Datin Jessica Tong Wai Leng said many successful entrepreneurs had gone against all odds to prove that the pandemic was not a barrier to success.

“They had to ‘re-strategise’ their business.

“They adapted and embraced the new normal by rebranding themselves or by giving their brand a new lease of life.”

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