KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 24 ― Three cinema operators, including Malaysia’s second-biggest chain TGV Cinemas, have approached the PAS-led Kelantan government to open up business there, a state executive councillor confirmed after a cineplex was rumoured to kick off operations from April next year.
However, state local government, housing, youth and sports committee chairman Datuk Abdul Fattah Mahmood added that none of the industry players who approached have returned to continue business discussions after being told they must follow the Entertainment Control and Places of Entertainment Enactment 1998, Malay daily Sinar Harian reported today.
“There were suggestions to open cinemas, and as far as I have held this portfolio, three companies including TGV Cinema have come for discussions on that matter. We have no problems accepting.
“During discussions between the state government and the companies involved, we explained the conditions that must be followed, they said they would return but from early last year till today, none have done so,” he was quoted saying after the state executive council meeting in Kota Baru yesterday.
Abdul Fattah said the state government has never barred any cinema operator from setting up shop, but only required them to abide by its Shariah-based entertainment laws.
Among the rules cinemas must follow are to segregate the audience according to gender, stop shows during the evening Maghrib prayer time, on Thursday nights and during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, he explained.
According to the daily, Abdul Fattah was commenting on an advertisement from a major supermarket chain that is scheduled to open next April that its new mall will include a cineplex.
There are no cinemas in Kelantan at present, with the last operating some 20 years ago, the daily reported.