Nasi Lemak among three Malaysian heritage nominees for UNESCO World Heritage status

KUALA LUMPUR: Three Malaysian 'symbols' have been listed as candidates this year for inclusion in the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation's (Unesco) World Heritage List.

They are Kompleks Gua Taman Negara Niah in Sarawak, Kebaya Malaysia, and Nasi Lemak.

Tourism, Arts, and Culture (Motac) Minister Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing said this is in line with the ministry's commitment to promote the country's heritage.

He said following the listing, 2024 would be considered a Heritage Year which holds great significance for Malaysia.

"Among them (heritage listed) is the Archaeological Heritage of Kompleks Gua Taman Negara Niah in Sarawak, named as a deserving candidate for World Heritage recognition.

"Meanwhile, the 'Kebaya Malaysia', jointly applied with neighbouring countries Brunei, Singapore, Indonesia and Thailand, has been nominated as a candidate for Unesco Intangible Cultural Heritage, representing humanitarian culture.

"The nomination of Malaysia's Breakfast Culture, including Nasi Lemak, is also an effort by the ministry to ensure that the people's traditional meal is recognised as the National Heritage Food of Malaysia and will not be claimed by other nations."

He said this in a speech text for Motac's Media Appreciation Gala 2024 held in Sunway Resort Hotel, Petaling Jaya, yesterday.

The gala invited local media groups which include New Straits Times Press (NSTP), Bernama, Star Media Group Berhad, Astro, RTM, and Sin Chew Daily.

Group managing editor Datuk Ahmad Zaini Kamaruzzaman represented NSTP in receiving a certificate of appreciation from the minister.

On a different note, Tiong expressed hope to attain more achievements through various programmes and initiatives that will be carried out this year with the help of the media.

This includes Visit Melaka Year 2024, Asean Tourism Forum 2025, World Tourism Day, World Tourism Conference 2025, and most importantly, Visit Malaysia 2026, he said.

"I hope that the media will continue to be our strategic partners in successfully promoting, and enhancing tourism and cultural programmes, and elevating Malaysia's tourism industry onto the global stage.

"Your close collaboration is crucial, especially in driving the upcoming Visit Malaysia 2026 campaign.

"With the assistance and support from the media, we believe that together we can achieve greater goals in showcasing the beauty and uniqueness of our country's tourist destinations to the world," he said.

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