Besut Polytechnic to establish centre of excellence to boost batik industry

JERTIH, Jan 22: The Polytechnic Education and Community College Department under the Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE) will establish a centre of excellence at the Besut Polytechnic this year to boost the country’s batik industry.

Its director-general, Dr Mohd Zahari Ismail, said Besut Polytechnic, the only institution under MOHE offering batik-related study programmes, will develop the Heritage Crafts Technology Centre (PTKW).

“The existing academic programmes at the polytechnic are the Diploma in Craft Design and the Diploma in Batik Fashion Design under the Department of Design and Visual Communication.

“PTKW is expected to be established within three to six months after all relevant processes are completed,” he told reporters after opening the Besut Polytechnic Heritage Crafts Gallery near Bukit Keluang here.

Mohd Zahari said the establishment of the centre, which is expected to raise the reputation of the polytechnic, is also in line with the government’s directive to make it compulsory for civil servants to wear batik attire every Thursday last year.

He said PTKW will focus on using the latest technologies in the batik industry, including introducing digital technology in batik production in its curriculum and facilitating more active collaboration with the batik sector, particularly in Terengganu, through the exchange of knowledge and expertise.

“PTKW also provides opportunities for students and the public to enhance their knowledge in the relevant field and for graduates to further their studies at a higher level or become entrepreneurs,” he said, adding that the centre can help elevate the batik industry faster.

Meanwhile, Mohd Zahari said there are 12 technology centres in various fields of study located in 12 out of 36 polytechnics, and four more centres are available at two community colleges nationwide.