OPENING SPEECH BY Y.A.B. TAN SRI DATUK SERI PANGLIMA MUSA HAJI AMAN CHIEF MINISTER OF SABAH, AT THE 18th EUROPEAN UNION FILM FESTIVAL, ON 29 NOVEMBER 2017, GSC SURIA SABAH, KOTA KINABALU, SABAH.
I welcome you to the opening of the European Union Film Festival (EUFF) in Kota Kinabalu. It is a privilege to join you here this evening and I wish to extend my gratitude to the organisers of this fine event for bringing such a diverse and interesting collection of European films to the Malaysian audience.
I congratulate the European Union Delegation to Malaysia, the participating European countries and cultural institutions, as well as Malaysian partners for this fruitful collaboration year after year.
Since its first edition back in 2000, the EUFF has been well received in Malaysia as one of the finest international film festivals in the country and has become a great asset in the country's cultural landscape. Films and other forms of communication including cultural events are a way for people from different backgrounds to learn about one another, and to draw from one another positive messages and inspiring stories.
Along with presenting award-winning movies, the EUFF offers our audience members a broad view of different perspectives and images that make up European culture. It provides Malaysians, through the powerful medium of cinema, a wide and at the same time intimate view of European life, and, through its narratives and stories, we are offered a glimpse into its rich heritage. This festival and all that it brings provides an ideal platform for cultural exchange.
I wish to take this opportunity to encourage film makers in Sabah and those who are involved in communicating stories through the various media forms to also showcase our stories to the world. We have many stories to tell as Sabah is home to rich cultural and biodiversity assets, that the world wants to hear about. We have talented people who have the ability to bring our message to a global audience, and I wish to see more local films produced and aired both in Malaysia and overseas.
The government is supportive of the development of the arts and performance scene in Sabah. Such forms of communication are a strong way of imparting messages and can even serve as an attraction for tourists. It is my hope that Sabah’s arts scene will continue to grow and flourish and will go beyond the focus area of Kota Kinabalu city to other towns and districts.
I do not wish to keep you waiting for too long to enjoy this fine selection of European cinema. On this note, I wish you a good evening ahead. Thank you.