‘Long way to go’ for Penang hawker culture to get Unesco recognition, Singapore leads us again

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 17 Dec 2020

GEORGE TOWN: The state government has fought hard for the hawker culture here to be nominated into Unesco's “Intangible Cultural Heritage” list, says the Penang tourism and creative economy committee chairman.

Yeoh Soon Hin, however, said that Penang has a long way to go in getting Unesco to recognise its hawker culture the same way Singapore did earlier this week.

"Singapore was way ahead in its nomination and Penang could not do so on its own, as the Federal Government has to make the application to Unesco.

“The Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry responded to us last year by saying it was ‘too premature’ to nominate Malaysian hawker culture as further in-depth studies were needed.

“The ministry said it would require research, inventory, conservation and documentation, which would take a long time.

"We could not make it on time, so a serial nomination with Singapore was not possible, ” he told a press conference in Komtar here on Thursday (Dec 17).

Yeoh was responding to questions on Singapore being recognised for its hawker culture by Unesco recently.

He said it would take about five years to pursue the recognition and would also cost the state around RM5mil to bring the proposal to Unesco.

On Wed (Dec 16), hawker culture in Singapore was officially added to the Unesco Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

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