LANGKAWI: Dermaga Tanjung Lembung (DTL), antara pintu masuk utama ke pulau ini kini berwajah baharu dan bersedia mengendalikan kapasiti kargo yang lebih besar apabila projek menaik taraf bernilai RM28 juta sudah siap sepenuhnya.
Sehubungan itu, Timbalan Menteri Kewangan I, Datuk Othman Aziz berkata, dermaga berusia 20 tahun itu sudah bersedia menjadi pusat pengendalian kargo, feri kenderaan berserta penumpang dan pusat pembaikan kapal bertaraf antarabangsa dalam tempoh terdekat.
"Projek membabitkan kerja pembinaan labuhan am sepanjang 450 meter, kawasan dataran untuk pengendalian dan penyimpanan kargo, labuhan pukal kering sepanjang 46 meter dan sebuah gudang bersaiz 76 meter panjang dan 18 meter lebar sudah siap lebih sebulan lalu.
"Menelan kos kira-kira RM28 juta, projek ini antara yang cepat disiapkan bagi meningkatkan urusan kemasukan keluar dan masuk kargo ke pulau ini," katanya.
Beliau berkata demikian pada sidang media sempena Majlis Penyerahan Projek Naik Taraf Pelabuhan Kargo Am dan Labuhan Pukal Kering di DTL, di sini, hari ini.
Othman berkata, berdasarkan rekod DTL mencatatkan pengendalian kargo lebih 275,000 metrik tan sepanjang beroperasi mulai 15 November 1997 dan angka itu dijangka meningkat seiring pengembangan ekonomi di pulau bebas cukai itu.
Mengulas perkembangan lain, beliau berkata, kerajaan turut memberi perhatian apabila fasa satu projek pembesaran Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Langkawi (LTAL) yang bernilai RM90 juta kini berada pada peringkat akhir untuk dilaksanakan.
"Projek (pembesaran LTAL) berada pada peringkat melukis pelan dan pengambilan tanah, selain perbincangan akhir membabitkan Kementerian Kerja Raya, Kerajaan Negeri, Lembaga Pembangunan Langkawi (LADA) dan Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad.
"Ia akan dimulakan secepat mungkin sebagai usaha menggandakan keupayaan kita untuk mengendalikan peningkatan jumlah pesawat domestik dan antarabangsa, sekali gus merealisasikan sasaran kerajaan menggamit lima juta pelancong ke Langkawi menjelang 2020.
"Menerusi kira-kira 40 penerbangan sehari ketika ini, Langkawi mencatat kemasukan 1.2 juta pelancong asing dan 3.4 juta tempatan dan jumlah itu pasti meningkat sebaik projek pembesaran LATAL siap kelak," katanya.
Sumber : BHarian
BUTTERWORTH: The Agriculture and Agro-based Industries Ministry hopes to achieve a nationwide catch of 130,000 tonnes of tuna worth RM1bil, cumulatively from now until 2020.
Its minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek said the ministry, through the Fisheries Department’s efforts, is also looking forward to catching RM300mil worth of tuna from the Indian Ocean alone over the same period, by issuing licences to 135 vessels.
“The ministry, through the Fisheries Department, has issued licences to 17 vessels and approved 93 permits for companies to buy or build new fishing vessels.
“The majority of tuna caught in Malaysia at present are of the skipjack and longtail species, and we are hoping to increase the landing of deep-sea species such as bigeye, albacore and yellowfin,” he said at a tuna landing ceremony at Dermaga Air Dalam here yesterday.
Ahmad Shabery added that the Fisheries Department was aiming to land 3,000 tonnes of tuna worth RM60mil in Penang this year.
“As of early September, 1,100 tonnes of the fish have been landed in Penang, so achieving the target is possible, through the combined efforts of the public and private sector.
“Malaysia has two ports registered with the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC), namely Dermaga Air Dalam and Tanjung Lembung in Langkawi, Kedah,” he said.
The IOTC is an intergovernmental body that coordinates the management of tuna stocks in the Indian Ocean.
Earlier, Ahmad Shabery also witnessed the landing of 520 tonnes of albacore, yellowfin and bigeye tuna worth RM8mil from a vessel owned by Kha Yang Marine Sdn Bhd.
Also present were Penang Port Commission chairman Datuk Tan Teik Cheng, Fisheries Department director-general Munir Mohd Nawi and Fisheries Development Authority of Malaysia deputy director-general Hashim Rahman.
Sources : TheStar
SEBANYAK 2,020 kenderaan pelbagai jenis dibawa keluar dari Langkawi ke tanah besar oleh pemiliknya sempena cuti sempena Hari Raya Aidilfitri menerusi Dermaga Tanjung Lembong (DTL).
Pengerusi Langkawi Port Sdn Bhd (Langkawi Port), Datuk Azizan Noordin berkata, jumlah kenderaan yang dibawa keluar ke Kuala Kedah dan Kuala Perlis itu, bagaimanapun berkurang 17 peratus berbanding tahun lalu.
"Semua kenderaan itu dibawa keluar menerusi 11 syarikat pengendali kargo dan perkhidmatan feri penumpang/kenderaan selama lima hari waktu puncak mulai hari ini dan berakhir Ahad ini.
"Sepanjang tempoh itu 2,020 kenderaan dibawa keluar dari pulau ini ke tanah besar dan jumlah itu berkurang berbanding 2,435 pada tahun lalu," katanya ditemui selepas merasmikan Program Selamat Pulang Perantau (PSPP) di DTL, hari ini.
Hadir sama Pengurus Besar Langkawi Port, Muhd Nasir Abdul Aziz.
Pada majlis sama, Azizan yang juga Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif Lembaga Pembangunan Langkawi mengetuai kakitangan Langkawi Port mengedarkan 100 cenderahati kepada pemandu kereta yang melalui kawasan pemeriksaan kastam di DTL.
Terdahulu, tinjauan mendapati lebih 500 pemilik kenderaan membanjiri dermaga itu seawal jam 7.30 pagi bagi menguruskan penghantaran kenderaan masing-masing untuk pulang bercuti.
Sementara itu, Muhd Nasir berkata, PSPP yang diadakan sejak empat tahun lalu bertujuan menambahkan keceriaan kepada warga Langkawi yang mahu keluar ke tanah besar.
"Ia juga sebagai penghargaan kepada pemandu kereta yang memberi kerjasama baik ketika berurusan dengan Langkawi Port yang juga pelabuhan tunggal di pulau ini," katanya.
Artikel ini disiarkan pada : Rabu, 21 Jun 2017 @ 1:25 PM
Source : Harian Metro
LANGKAWI: A 1926 Rolls Royce Phantom 1 model is among some 50 vintage cars on display at the two-day Royal Langkawi Classic Car Show, which opened at the Mahsuri International Exhibition Centre yesterday.
The nearly century-old car, which is valued at more than RM1 million, is one of the biggest attractions at the show, which was opened by Tunku Temenggung Kedah, Tunku Puteri Intan Shafinaz Sultan Abdul Halim Shah.
The Langkawi Development Authority (Lada) and MY Classic Sdn Bhd, a classic car event management and sales company, co-organised the event.
In his speech opening the event, Lada chief executive officer Datuk Azizan Noordin said the event is one of the many activities held to celebrate the Sultan of Kedah’s birthday.
“This is the first time that we organised this event, which we plan to list as one of our yearly tourism activities,” he said.
He added that cash prizes, totalling more than RM28,000, await winners of the five categories of classic cars competitions during the show. — BERNAMA
Source : NST
LANGKAWI: The Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition 2017 (LIMA'17) has far exceeded its visitor target, achieving 206,971 visitors as of 2pm today, the final day of the event.
LIMA'17 organiser, EN Projects general manager, Norliza Abd Manap, said the total number comprises 40,280 trade visitors and 166,691 public visitors.
"This has exceeded our 180,000 visitor target, and the total is relatively high compared to LIMA'15, which recorded 179,161 visitors," she told reporters here today.
Meanwhile, since its opening on Tuesday, the maritime segment at Resort World Langkawi received over 54,000 visitors.
In a statement, the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) said visitors to the maritime exhibition boarded a special boat for a closer look at the RMN and foreign navy vessels anchored around the resort.
A total of 55 vessels, comprising 16 naval warships from abroad and 39 vessels from RMN and local agencies were on display at LIMA'17.
"Themed 'Today for Tomorrow', the exhibition was aimed at giving the public the opportunity to familiarise themselves with the RMN, and to understand its overall operations better," the statement said.
Among activities held were marching band performances by the Philippines and Sri Lanka Navies, an RMN Marching Band Drumline, a uniform exhibition, a silent drill performance and an exhibition by the RMN Special Force (Paskal). -- BERNAMA
Source : NST
JUST before the KAI T-50B aircraft of the Republic of Korea Air Force aerobatics team Black Eagles came roaring overhead, flying in from behind the Mahsuri International Exhibition Centre (MIEC), the excitable team commentator caused some of those in Langkawi to burst out in laughter.
Practically shouting into the microphone, the commentator tried to get those attending the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace (Lima) 2017 exhibition to turn to the rear.
“Ladies and gentlemen,” he said, dragging out the second syllable of the first word such as a circus ringmaster would do. “Please turn your attention to the back side!”
Some photographers nearly missed the shot they were waiting for. Such was the mirth that overcame them.
The faux pas of the commentator aside, the Black Eagles’s routine, performed at least once a day for visitors, was a sight to behold. Theirs was one of the highlights of Lima, along with the SU-30SM aircraft of the Russian Knights, the famed aerobatics team of the Russian Aerospace Forces. So were the Tentera Nasional Indonesia-Angkatan Udara aerobatics team Jupiter and, of course, the SU-30MKM, F/A-18D Hornet and Pilatus PC-7 aircraft of the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF).
The 14th edition of the Lima series of shows, in fact, was a great success. With a growth in taken-up exhibition space of about 40 per cent compared with Lima 2015, the show was already considered a success.
But, with the participation of the aerobatics teams, alongside the ever-present crowd favourites of our own RMAF aircraft and the sleek lines of the French Air Force’s Rafale, everything seemed to buzz just that little bit more, at least where the aerospace segment was concerned.
In fact, the show had the best of starts after it was declared opened by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, who, as defence minister in 1991, was in charge of the first Lima. The opening gambit following Najib’s speech featured the different aircraft of the RMAF fleet in quite a spectacular show that ended in explosions set off to simulate the destruction of targets attacked by an EC725 helicopter.
As the crowd walked off the tarmac and into the MIEC compound, two senior United States Air Force (USAF) officers were overheard talking to each other about how impressed they were with the opening gambit.
“That was an intense show,” one said to the other, to which the second officer said it was the best he had ever seen.
In truth, there have been Lima opening gambits that were better than the one on March 21, but to hear two lieutenant-colonels of the USAF, or any air force for that matter, saying such things would be enough to cause any Malaysian’s heart to swell with pride.
If the air show at the aerospace segment was awe-inspiring, the boat demonstrations at the maritime segment were no less exciting. The gracing ceremony, in fact, was a show of force by the different marine forces at Malaysia’s beck and call should any situation requiring their intervention come about.
At the ceremony, special forces from the Royal Malaysian Navy, Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency and police, with a little help from the Marine, Customs and Fisheries Departments, freed several “hostages” from the clutches of “kidnappers”. The agencies’ specialised boats and helicopters were used in the demonstration, showing off the power that Malaysia can bring to bear on those intending to do no good in our waters.
But, the demonstrations at either segments of Lima, exciting though they may be, are but mere sideshows. Yes, some like the Rafale, Saab Gripen and Muhibbah Engineering’s CJ66 rigid-hull inflatable boat are meant to be shown off to potential customers. But these are the exceptions.
What matters in any show such as Lima is what goes on inside the exhibition centre. The companies that attend such shows are there to sell their products or find potential partners. And, this is exactly what went on at MIEC and the exhibition centre outside Resorts World Langkawi, where the maritime segment took place. The hustle and bustle at the exhibitors’ booths on the first three days of Lima 2017, when only trade visitors were allowed in, was proof that the show was a success in terms of business.
So, overall, Lima 2017 proved a good show. In such uncertain economic times, such a success has an even bigger significance. It was a sign that Lima is here to stay, at least for the foreseeable future.
Kudos then to the Defence and Transport Ministries, which were the main ministries involved in the staging of Lima. Bouquets, too, to the Armed Forces, which provides the manpower for so big an event.
And, congratulations to EN Projects (M) Sdn Bhd. As the new organisers of the region’s biggest show of the sort, the company did a splendid job. Yes, there were some hiccups, but they were few and far between, and minor enough to be of no consequence.
LESLIE ANDRES has more than two decades of experience, much of which has been spent writing about crime and the military. A die-hard Red Devil, he can usually be found wearing a Manchester United jersey when outside of work.
Source : NST
IF YOU need a guide to take you on your travels throughout Malaysia, I have just the person for you. He can answer all your questions as you go on your discovery tour.
His name is Azizan Noordin. Datuk Azizan Noordin, to be precise. He is the chief executive officer of the Langkawi Development Authority, a post he assumed in December last year.
I caught up with him last week, after the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace exhibition on the legendary island. I met him again a few days ago to listen to his amazing story.
Azizan retired as the deputy director general of Tourism Malaysia in November and assumed his new post less than one month after retirement. I suspect he wouldn’t have minded being told to pack his bags and go to Langkawi immediately. Such is his passion for tourism.
It was difficult not to feel excited as he shared his plans for Langkawi. Being a Kedahan, having been born in Kulim, Azizan has a strong affinity with the island of legends.
His story: “Yes, tourism is in my blood. Many people do not know this but I’m a qualified tourist guide. I’m trained as a tourist guide.
“You see, there’s a provision given to a civil servant to prepare himself for post-retirement when the retirement date gets near. I was asked if there was any course I wished to take so that I can be productive after my retirement.
“I took up a tourist guide course at Karisma Institute, one of the recognised training centres for such a profession. The course was for six months. I enrolled in an ongoing course.
“Some people felt strange that a very senior tourism officer would take such a course. I gave talks in tourism as a resource person. And then I applied to participate on such a course. Some people thought I was going out of my mind.
“But I’ve been a tourism person in my entire career as a civil servant. Enrolling in a tourist guide course was a natural thing to do for me. I didn’t feel odd at all.
“Little did I know then that I was going to be the head of Lada! Even though tourism is in my blood, there’s much to gain from acquiring new knowledge and skills.”
What do they teach tourist guides, I asked him.
“Well, there are quite a number of things to know, apart from the various laws and rules and regulations. We need to know about the etiquette of being a guide, which is very important.
“We also need to know what tourists want and what they are likely to ask. We must be ready to face all situations, good or bad. The exams are divided into three sections: oral, written and simulation.
“I remember my written test. I was the only candidate who asked for additional sheets of paper to write my answers. I have so much information and information is what tourists want.”
Now that he’s the CEO of Lada, Azizan feels that his additional credential as a qualified tourist guide can really come in handy. A tourist guide’s guiding philosophy is simple — be a Jack of all trades and master of all.
What are his plans for Langkawi, then?
The island celebrates 30 years of its duty-free status this year. Azizan started work soon after taking up office with reorganising Lada’s operations.
His plans involve three thrusts — tourism, investment and community.
These three sectors were just units within Lada, but they have since been expanded to become full-fledged divisions.
If Langkawi is to compete seriously with other well-known holiday islands, everyone on the island has to work hard and be prepared to help.
“That is why my plans involve every member of the community.
“For this year, I have scheduled 33 events involving the community directly. Lada and the community must be one.
“I have 35 other events being organised, such as an international fishing competition and a power boat race.
“I also want more engagement with young Malaysians — entrepreneurs, students and youth leaders. These young people, especially those from the Gen Y, are important. I want them to be involved in Langkawi’s development. I’m sure they have plenty of ideas.”
No doubt tourism is the biggest revenue earner for Langkawi. But it’s time for upgrading and upscaling.
“We want to see more world-class establishments and events here,” Azizan said.
Langkawi’s infrastructure may have been adequate to serve the island in the first 30 years. There are demands for more infrastructure, such as a medical specialist centre or a private hospital, an international school and high-end resorts to cater to high-net worth individuals frequenting the island.
Azizan is full of excitement when he talks about Langkawi. After an illustrious career in tourism promotion, this UiTM graduate now finds himself right at the top of an organisation where he can execute his plans and realise his dreams right down to the last detail.
I asked him what would he have done if he had not been picked to head Lada: “I am now a qualified tourist guide. I thought that I would put my new qualification to a test by being a real tourist guide.
“But Allah has other plans. I’m thankful that I get an opportunity to put all my 38 years of experience in tourism to good use here in Langkawi,” he said. All the best, Datuk Tourist Guide.
AHMAD A TALIB is the chairman of Yayasan Salam Malaysia.
Credit : NST
Langkawi is an island of legends. Its name is believed to have originated from the abundance of eagles on the island: helang (eagle in Malay) and kawi (marble in Sanskrit), begets the moniker helang-kawi which was eventually toned down to Langkawi. The main settlement of locals is in Kuah, a dusty town noticeably beloved for its array of duty-free stores and Chinese seafood restaurants. Other popular areas include the Pantai Cenang and Pantai Tengah stretch, the quite strips of Pantai Kok and Padang Matsirat and the exclusive beaches of Datai Bay and Tanjung Rhu. No matter where you go on Langkawi you will find that myths and legends permeate its culture and history, so read up on them and familiarise yourself with the island’s most popular stories.
Of course there are many accounts on Langkawi’s origin, including those from legends & folklore, but officially (and according to history books) we can surmise that the island was under the rule of the Sultanate of Kedah for a very long time. Eventually, it came under British rule during the colonial century and then, for a brief period during World War II, it was controlled by the Thai monarchy. This has resulted in some Thai influence on Langkawi’s culture, evident by the number of Thai restaurants and Siamese-inspired sights.
After the war, the island became known as a nesting ground for pirates. The many islands and dense, verdant jungle provided much-needed cover for their dubious activities while providing an excellent hide-out. Meanwhile, the island’s inhabitants continued to live a sleepy life in wooden villages, pushing bullock carts and harvesting paddy fields. Life was simple and easy; simply too peaceful for modern change.
The catalyst that triggered the development of Langkawi was when a certain man stepped on the island to serve as a doctor; Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohammad, who would become the fourth Prime Minister of Malaysia. When he was elected, Dr Mahathir proceeded to work closely with Kedah authorities to modernise and develop Langkawi.
The pinnacle of the transformation occurred when the island was granted duty-free status, attracting tourists and locals alike to cheap goods such as liquor and cigarettes. Soon, Langkawi hotels and restaurants started popping up as the tourism industry began to boom, and the island took a giant leap towards the 20th Century.
Today, Langkawi is probably the busiest island of Malaysia second to Penang. The landscape has changed dramatically along with the number of visitors. Gone are the old designs and drab colours of Langkawi; new buildings painted in bright colours project a vibrant and dynamic image. Roads are constantly being tarred and maintained, while new construction projects occur at an astounding rate.
Almost the whole population earns an income from the tourism industry. Life has become fast-paced and, sadly, some old traditions were lost. But alas, change is progress. With its diverse offerings and attractions, coupled with the beautiful landscape and ideal climate, Langkawi’s future is secure as a prime tourist destination.
The weather in Langkawi is consistently hot and humid all-year-round, with occasional rainfall and cloudy skies, but thankfully it’s never too drastic. Located on the north-western coast of Peninsular Malaysia in the Malaccan Straits, this enduringly popular island is shielded from major winds and storms by the mainland on one side and Sumatra on the other. As Langkawi is situated near the equator, the town enjoys a tropical nature with the Andaman Sea remaining relatively calm all year long, and due to its consistent climate, locals and travellers can visit this tropical island at anytime of the year.
Best Time to Go to Langkawi
Between the months of November and April, Langkawi weather is a good balance of sunshine and light rainfall, making it the best time to head there for holiday. Temperatures are fairly consistent during the day, ranging from 30°C to 35°C while at night, between 28°C and 29°C. That being said, visitors can expect sunshine lasting till the afternoon and overcast skies toward the evenings. The weather in Langkawi also has a rather high humidity level, so locals and tourists are often seen relaxing on the Pantai Cenang and Pantai Tengah during more sweltering afternoons. The island is also well-frequented at this time of the year for excellent diving opportunities and water-based adventures such as jet-skiing, parasailing, and banana boating.
Rainy Season in Langkawi
Due to its tropical landscape, Langkawi weather experiences of heavy rainfall due to monsoon winds between the months of September and October. While showers are sometimes accompanied by violent thunderstorms, the weather in Langkawi is not usually adversely affected. Therefore, the sea surrounding Langkawi is relatively calm compared to destinations on the east coast. During the rainy season, visitors still flock to the island to enjoy a wide range of activities such as shopping for duty-free goods or enjoying pampering massages at the island’s numerous spa centres.
Bahasa Malaysia is the official language, but English is widely spoken and understood.
Ringgit is the official currency, but some resorts and establishments do accept other notes or offer foreign exchange (check with them for the service). The current exchange rate is around RM3.70 to USD 1.00 – but, consult banks for the latest exchange rates prior to your trip. Kuah town and the airport is where you will find most of the banks and money-changers. Banks open daily from 09:30 to 15:30. On Thursdays, they are open from 09:30 to 12:00 and are closed on Saturdays.
Langkawi follows the Kedah state holidays. Weekends fall on Thursdays and Fridays but most businesses will continue operating normal business hours on Thursdays too. The official start of the week is on Saturday.
There is a hospital and various private clinics in Kuah town.
The police headquarters is in Kuah, but there are police stations in all the districts. Langkawi is relatively safe compared to the bigger cities, but do take precautions such as travelling in groups and avoiding quiet places.
Tipping is not necessary unless you’ve had good service.
Malaysia’s electricity follows the 240 volt 50-cycle system.
Citizens of North Korea, Cuba, Vietnam and China need visas to enter Malaysia. Other foreigners may enter Malaysia without a visa for a visit not exceeding one month. Please consult your nearest Malaysian Embassy or consular office to confirm this arrangement, as regulations may change over time.
Tap water is safe for drinking in Malaysia, but some hotels install filtration systems or provide bottled water for guests as an added precaution.
Foreign nationals visiting Malaysia for 48 hours or less receive a duty exemption for the purchase of souvenirs, gifts and items intended for personal use up to a limit of RM500. There is a duty-free limit for certain types of items: booze (up to one litre), tobacco (up to 225g, or 200 cigarettes), one pair of leather footwear, new clothing (up to three pieces), as well as cosmetics and personal hygiene items (not including powder or hair products).
All drugs are prohibited in Malaysia and laws are strictly enforced. There is a death penalty for anyone caught carrying a certain amount for trafficking, and even possession of the smallest amount can land one in very serious trouble.