I still remember fondly my visit to Village Park in Uptown Damansara for breakfast. I had heard about the place and the fantastic nasi lemak that they offered through word of mouth and was not disappointed by the quality offered.
We are truly blessed as a country, with various races intertwining to form the rich ethnic tapestry that is 1Malaysia. One of the many blessings this gives us is that we get to enjoy some of the best food in the world. From the Penang Fried Kuay Teow down to the Johor Laksa, each culture brings to the table many signature dishes that delight our taste buds. When I was attending college in the UK, there were times when I was pining for the food of my homeland, a taste that cannot easily be found elsewhere.
And the quality of our food is no secret. We are renowned worldwide for our unique Malaysian flavours, which continue to be featured on international platforms such as CNN. People sing praises about our food when they visit the country and with social media complementing established news portals in spreading the word, it serves as a good boost for our tourism industry.
We have also emerged as one of the world’s premier halal hubs, thanks to the efforts of the Halal Industry Development Corporation in ensuring outstanding quality. In the first half of this year alone, we exported over RM16 billion worth of halal products and services and attracted over RM1 billion in foreign direct investment. Budget 2013 ensured we will keep this momentum going by providing RM200 million of working capital for small and medium business entrepreneurs producing halal foods and other products.
I believe that a country’s food says a lot about its culture. Malaysia’s food stands out because it has benefited from the bringing together of different styles and tastes. And that’s the very principle that has made Malaysia the country we are proud of today.