LAHAD DATU: The Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture is discussing the proposed establishment of a handicraft sales or hub in this district.
Its minister, Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi said the existence of such a hub would enable handicraft producers to market their products better.
“I have discussed the proposal with the district officer and a site has been identified. Now we will seek an allocation to develop the handicraft hub,” he told reporters after the Sayangi Lahad Datu Festival, here, recently.
In conjunction with the festival, Mohamaddin who is also Silam Member of Parliament, said Kraftangan Malaysia held a new product output lab involving textile comprising batik and soft furnishings, metal (parang), forest products, bead handicrafts from July 26 to 30 with the participation of 47 handicraft entrepreneurs in the district.
“Through this lab, the expertise of the instructors comprising entrepreneurs and designers from Kraftangan Malaysia had added value to the creation of new products and diversification of handicrafts,” he said.
Mohamaddin also said that the holding of the festival was a government initiative to promote local arts to the present generation and as a new tourism draw to Sabah, particularly to Lahad Datu.
On another development, the minister said promotion of the Blue Rings, also known as the Blue Holes, at Tingkayu Coral Reef, near Darvel Bay, here, would be intensified to attract more tourists to dive and admire the beauty of the reef.
The reef which was discovered by a group of scuba divers including researchers from Sabah Parks on Feb 14, however, has to be first gazetted as a protected marine area before being turned into an eco-tourism product.