KUALA LUMPUR: Concerts like the recent one by British rock band Coldplay, which saw some protests from PAS as well as other groups, can bring in a lot of revenue, says Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah.
The Selangor Ruler said it was up to politicians to explain to the people how rejecting these events resulted in a loss of revenue.
Citing the recent concert by British pop group Coldplay, the Ruler said politicians should have explained to the people that such events brought in money for local businesses.
“That is why (because of such protests) all the good concerts go to Jakarta and Singapore.
“Like, for example, the Taylor Swift and Coldplay concerts, which are scheduled for six days in Singapore next year, imagine how much money Singapore would make (from them),’’ Tuanku said in an exclusive interview with Sunday Star.
The last interview with The Star, in conjunction with the Sultan of Selangor’s official birthday, was in 2021.
Like Coldplay, it is reported that Swift will be playing six nights at the National Stadium in Singapore next year.
Besides her originally announced three nights (March 2 to 4 next year) for the Singapore leg of The Eras Tour, Swift will also be performing from March 7 to 9.
Meanwhile, Tuanku added that he was impressed with the handicrafts in Sarawak during his visit to the state recently, as they were of very good quality.
According to the Sultan, handicrafts were an important part of tourism, as people bought them as mementos.
“When I ask the Selangor Tourism people here, they say they have tourist attractions such as cultural dance. What is this? People want to get some nice souvenirs and not junk.’’
Sultan Sharafuddin also said Selangor Tourism must ensure that the Orang Asli in Carey Island are living in good conditions and their handicraft is duly highlighted and promoted if tourists are to be directed there.
“It must be shown that the Orang Asli on Carey Island have a culture, wood carving and all that.”
The Ruler said Selangor was very weak with regard to tourism, as the focus is only on how many people come into the state.
“But we must cater to the ‘big fish’ because they are the ones who will be spending.
“I have been telling Tourism Selangor (about it),’’ said Sultan Sharafuddin.
On the shortage of rice in the state, Sultan Sharafuddin said the state government has been talking about food security for the past 25 years.
“Enough of talking about it. We must pull our socks up and produce more food of our own instead of importing everything.’’
In contrast, the Sultan said, he had seen the same matter settled within a year after it was brought up for discussion in the Arab countries he had visited.
“It is very embarrassing. I think it is better to talk to the Great Wall of China, as at least I would have a beautiful wall (to look at).
“I told the MB (mentri besar) that Sekinchan is a very good example. You can speak with the Sekinchan assemblyman from DAP (Ng Suee Lim) and create a portfolio for him to just focus on rice matters.’’
Sultan Sharafuddin said Ng can start in Sekinchan and move northwards right up to Sabak Bernam to offer his expert advice on the management of rice fields for padi farmers to have bigger yields.
Speaking about Ng, Sultan Sharafuddin said it was impressive that the assemblyman, who is a former Selangor Legislative Assembly Speaker, is a five-term assemblyman in the same constituency.
“That means everyone – the Malays, Chinese and Javanese – have accepted him, and that is why I want to give him a Datukship,’’ said Sultan Sharafuddin.
Moving on to another matter, Sultan Sharafuddin welcomed the newly formed Selangor Mental Health Association (SMHA) and hoped the organisation would carry out its responsibilities professionally.
Sultan Sharafuddin also gave his blessings to SMHA’s plans to reach out to the state government to embark on a collaboration.
“I noticed that staying in Selangor comes with a lot of stress. I am also stressed at times. We do need mental healthcare to be dealt with professionally here.
“So be serious; be professional. If there are any problems at the state level let me know. Write them down and send them to me, and I will ask the state.
“But then again, (there are no guarantees) as the state can be slow at times,’’ Sultan Sharafuddin told SMHA.