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May 9, 2010

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Prince attends Brunei Pavilion events

BRUNEI Pavilion Day opened yesterday with a flag-raising ceremony, traditional wedding music, songs and dance at the Expo Center.

His Royal Highness Prince Mohamed Bolkiah, the small Southeast Asian state of Brunei Darassalam's Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, attended the ceremony and toured the pavilion.

As Brunei Malays comprise seven ethnic groups, there is a unique blend between their culture and Islamic practice which is showcased in wedding rituals, names of dishes, dances, songs, music, games and other cultural habits.

At the pavilion, large crowds gathered around Haji Sabli, a retired Bruneian handicraft expert, who showcased traditional skills by carving wood into miniatures of musical instruments, traditional weapons and boats.

"Boats in water villages in Brunei are like bicycles on land," Sabli said. "Accompanied by native drawings, they fully represent our culture."

"It's my first visit to China and I'm so glad to see our culture of interest to many Chinese."

Batik artist Zainal Ibrahim gave a demonstration of painting on cloth, developing traditional patterns that are popular on shirts, scarfs, table cloths and other everyday items.

With century-old brass work, silverware and wood works, the pavilion -- with its "Now for the Future" theme -- reflects Brunei Darussalam's commitment to meeting not only the immediate needs of its people, but the long-term aspirations of its youth for future generations.

It showcases its National Vision 2035, a long-term development blueprint to make the country widely recognized for an educated, highly skilled and accomplished people with a quality of life and a dynamic and sustainable economy.

Visitors can enjoy genuine food from Brunei such as the hot and spicy Nasi Katok.


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