Ipoh’s Silveritage Galleria commercial centre will be transformed into Perak’s showcase for its handicraft and specialities like batik, labu sayong pottery, Tambun pomelo, Ipoh white coffee and kacang putih.
The one-stop centre will be similar to must-visit destinations like the Pasar Besar Siti Khadijah in Kelantan and Pasar Mayang in Terengganu which have a myriad of local stuff under one roof.
State Tourism Committee chairman Datuk Hamidah Osman who revealed the plans for Silveritage Galleria during a visit to the centre in Jalan Raja Nazrin Shah recently said tour operators would also be invited to set up their counters at the centre.
She said a committee comprising the Ipoh City Council, Perak State Development Corporation (SDC), Tourism Perak and Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents would be set up to undertake the task.
Looking back, Hamidah said Silveritage Galleria, which opened for business in 2001, had not been doing well since then.
Nevertheless, she envisaged better days ahead for the centre following the transformation and urged handicraft traders to consider setting up business there.
“Handicraft traders at the Ipoh central market should consider relocating to Silveritage Galleria since their business has slowed down following the closure of the Super Kinta shopping centre next door,” she added.
Hamidah said the state would also help traders who needed financial aid to apply for soft loans from government agencies and programmes like Tekun Nasional and 1AZAM Programme.
Accompanying her during the visit were SDC chief executive Samsudin Hashim and Tourism Perak chief executive Ahmad Fathil Abd Ghani.