Speech By Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng During The “Penang-Phuket and Thailand-Malaysia trade, investment, tourism, economic and development co-operation Business Dialogue” in Hotel Metropole, Phuket Released On 19.9.2014.
September 18, 2014 marks the culmination of a 100-year engagement between Penang and Phuket where both cities are now “married” through friendship city status signed between the President of Penang Municipal Council(MPPP) Dato Patahiyah binti Ismail and Phuket Mayor Mrs Somjai Suwansupana. I wish to thank Penang State EXCO member Chow Kon Yeow, Phuket Governor Mr Maitri Inthusut, Ambassador of Thailand to Malaysia Mr Krit Kraichitti and Consul-General of Thailand to Penang Mrs Srirat Vathesatogkit for making the signing of the MOU of Friendship City status possible.
Though it took 10 years to renew our friendship, it is better late than never. Has it not been said that whilst it would take 10 years to plant a tree, it would take 100 years to teach a man.
Thailand is one of the 3 neighbouring countries (the others being Indonesia and Singapore) where Phuket and Penang are bonded by blood, tied by culture with a shared history and driven by common values of honesty, hard work and tolerance of new ideas and diversity. Whilst we have a shared past, the future would depend on how both Penang and Phuket can mutually benefit for a win-win formula for both cities.
The opening of ASEAN free trade by 2016 marks a new chapter of trade, investment, tourism, economic and development co-operation for the 600 million people living in ASEAN. The friendship city status between Penang and Phuket marks a new chapter of a mutually beneficial productive relationship exchanging the expertise of Phuket in tourism with technology knowledge of Penang.
Phuket with 70,000 hotel rooms and an annual 12 million tourists has much to teach Penang in terms of networking and promotion of new products, events and experiences. Penang’s entry into the creative cluster due to the presence of of the 3Ts of talent, technology and tolerance can also share our expertise with Phuket.
I am told that I am the first Penang Chief Minister to make an official visit to Phuket. Our high-powered delegation includes 3 other memorandums of understanding(MOUs) comprising of MOUs between the respective Chambers of Commerce, 2 private MOUs of one between Marrybrown and the local franchisee in Thailand and the other one of a purchase of a Phuket hotel by famous Penang businessman Datuk Syed Aidid.
The Penang state government is confident of the joint promise of Penang and Phuket not only because both our cities start with the letter P and our shared Peranakan heritage, but also due to our joint commitment to the 3P partnership of a Public, Private and People Partnership. Let us grow together by learning together, working together so that we can prosper together.
LIM GUAN ENG
2014年9月18日是，标志着槟城及普吉岛百年往来的新篇章，因为正式“缔结”为友好城市。这项缔结为友好城市的签署仪式，是由槟岛市政局主席拿督芭堤雅与普吉市市长许得意 代表两地签署。我谨此感谢槟州行政议员曹观友、普吉岛省长Maitri Inthusut、泰国驻马大使Krit Kraichitti 先生及泰国驻槟领事Srirat Vathesatogkit，让此友好城市的签署备忘录仪式，正式落实。
拥有7万间酒店房、年度1200万入境游客人次的普吉岛，可与槟城分享他们在旅游方面的经验，包括新产品及活动的推广及联系。槟城建立的创意圈（creative cluster），是基于拥有所需的3T， 即人才（talent）、科技（technology）及宽容（tolerance）。这些专业知识，都是槟城可以与普吉岛分享的。