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Chinese Amazed At M'sian Minangkabau Roof Design

2009. 21 July

( The Chinese have been bowled over by the design of the proposed Malaysian pavilion in the shape of a Malaysian Minangkabau roof for the upcoming 2010 Shanghai World Expo.

Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen said the Chinese had described the design as unique and awesome.

The Architecture Design Institute of South China University of Technology had designed the Malaysian pavilion, Dr Ng told Malaysian reporters after presenting the design to Deputy Director-General Bureau of Shanghai World Expo Coordination Huang Jianzhi here Tuesday.

She said, due to the high standards required of the building's design, only 11 companies submitted their designs.

The minister also revealed that Venturepharm Asia Sdn Berhad was selected to build the Malaysian pavilion, adding that the company was picked through an open-tender system by the ministry.

Ng said the company was registered with the finance ministry under the treasury code 220204 (Exhibition Management Stage).

A report in a Malaysian tabloid Tuesday, had questioned why Venturepharm, a pharmaceutical-based company, was selected to construct the pavilion.

The issue was first raised in a Dewan Rakyat sitting last month by a PKR member of parliament for Wangsa Maju, Wee Choo Keong.

Ng said 242 countries were taking part in the Expo, adding that only 41 pavilions were designed by the respective countries.

She said in her meeting with Huang today, he had instructed that the building be completed by December-end.

The Expo, expected to be held from May 1 to Oct 31, next year, is themed, 'Better City, Better Life'.

The minister also said that she had asked Malaysian Ambassador to China Datuk Syed Norulzaman Syed Kamarulzaman to manage the project, while Malaysian Council-General in Shanghai Azmil Zakaria would supervise it.