Taiping among Malaysia’s 10 happiest cities

Taiping has been recognised as one of the happiest cities in the country. It joins nine other cities in Malaysia for the recognition as announced by the Urban and Rural Planning Department yesterday in conjunction with the International Day of Happiness. The nine other cities announced are Melaka, Kuala Terengganu, Seremban, Kulai, Kuantan, Bentong, Jasin, Yan and Jeli. The cities were judged based on the population’s well-being including health and mental and physical well-being. Among the components judged is happiness with family and relatives, pleasure in working, relationship with neighbours, community activities and environmental quality. The department added that the Happiness Index study began from 2013 to 2019 involving 60,000 respondents in Malaysia. Last year, Taiping was listed in the 2018 Sustainable Destinations Top 100 by the Green Destination Foundation, among other awards. (Malay Mail)

Daycare centres reopened, updated SOPs tabled

The government will update the standard operating procedures (SOP) for childcare centres, thereby enabling the vast majority to resume their activities. Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry tabled the updated SOPs yesterday during the ministerial meeting on implementing the conditional MCO. “Before this, 304 out of 7,000 childcare centres nationwide were allowed to operate per the government’s SOPs. The update will enable the remaining 6,696 centres to operate immediately,” he said. Ismail Sabri added the SOPs for pre-schools and kindergartens will be finalised by the Education Ministry before they are allowed to resume operations, as their management falls under the purview of several other ministries. The government is expected to unveil more Covid-19 health guidelines this Saturday as it prepares to allow a greater number of social and commercial activities to resume, including religious programmes, night markets as well as barbers and hair salons. (Malay Mail)

(Source: Bernama)

Cable car project cancellation will affect Penang’s economy

The Penang government is disappointed that the RM100mil Penang Hill cable car project has been cancelled by the Federal Government, but environmentalists are cheering. Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said the cancellation would not only affect the continuity of the Penang Hill development plan but also the state’s economy in general. “In the current economic situation due to the Covid-19 pandemic, public infrastructure like the cable car project would stimulate the local market, provide job opportunities and cause other ripple effects to the state’s economic development, ” he said. The RM100mil allocation for the cable car project was announced during Budget 2020. The pre-feasibility study of the project is still in process and is expected to be completed in the second half of the year. (The Star Online)

DBKL freezes new liquor licence permits

Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) has put a freeze on the granting of new liquor licence applications, effective immediately. The local authority said it was responding to the call by Federal Territories Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa who had called for the government to stop issuing licences for liquor sales until new guidelines are in place and laws have been revised. It also added that enforcement will be carried out on premises that were selling liquor without a licence. The decision was made after several recent incidents of drunk drivers causing accidents including a case early Monday, where a motorcyclist was killed in an accident involving an allegedly drunk driver. (The Star Online)

Parkson expands with new tenancy agreement in China

Parkson Retail Group Ltd, which operates 100 stores in Asia has inked a 20-year tenancy agreement for a commercial space in Wuzhou City, China. The agreement was inked between the group’s indirect wholly-owned subsidiary Nanning Brilliant Parkson Commercial Co Ltd, and the landlord Wuzhou Sankee Investment Co Ltd. The tenancy agreement is in respect of the tenancy of the first to the fourth floor of Sunshine 100 Sankee City, Wuzhou City, China. According to the group’s website, it operates 38 stores in China, as well as 42 in Malaysia, 15 in Indonesia, and four in Vietnam. The total rental (inclusive of tax) of the property comprises a fixed rental of about RMB1.94 million for the 1st to 3rd year, percentage rental for the 4th to 5th year, and guaranteed rental or percentage rental (whichever amount is larger) for the 6th to 20th years. (NST Online)