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Seberang Perai, also known as Province Wellesley, is a narrow hinterland on the Malay Peninsula
Malay Peninsula
opposite Penang
Penang
Island, which, together with the island, forms the Malaysian state of Penang. It borders Kedah
Kedah
to the north and east, and Perak
Perak
to the south. Its principal town is Butterworth, while its local authority, the Seberang Perai
Perai
Municipal Council, is centred near Bukit Mertajam. As of 2010[update], Seberang Perai
Perai
had a population of 815,767, making it the second most populous local government area in Malaysia.[2][3] Originally a part of Kedah, the hinterland was ceded to the British East India Company
East India Company
towards the end of the 18th century. Named after a British officer, Province Wellesley was acquired to provide more agricultural land and as a defensive bulwark against any cross-strait invasion from the mainland. Since then, it has become part of Penang, which was made a British crown colony in 1867. Seberang Perai
Perai
has witnessed substantial economic development in the decades after Malaya's independence.[4][5] Massive industrial estates have been established within Seberang Perai, while the relocation of the Port of Penang's core operations to Butterworth in 1974 has also boosted the town's economy. Improvements in connectivity and transportation were facilitated by several major projects, such as the constructions of the North–South Expressway, the Penang
Penang
Bridge and the Second Penang
Penang
Bridge. Today, Seberang Perai
Perai
forms part of Greater Penang, the second largest conurbation in Malaysia.[6]

Contents

1 Etymology 2 History

2.1 Early history 2.2 British acquisitions 2.3 British rule 2.4 World War II 2.5 Post-war era

3 Geography

3.1 Outlying islets 3.2 Urban and suburban areas 3.3 Drainage system 3.4 Climate

4 Government and politics

4.1 Local government

4.1.1 Districts

4.2 State and federal constituencies 4.3 Judiciary

5 Demographics

5.1 Ethnicities

6 Economy

6.1 Manufacturing 6.2 Entrepôt trade 6.3 Agriculture 6.4 Services

6.4.1 Retail

7 Transport

7.1 Land 7.2 Public transportation 7.3 Sea

8 Shopping 9 Healthcare 10 Sports 11 Education 12 Tourism 13 Image Gallery 14 References 15 External links

Etymology[edit] Seberang Perai
Perai
was originally named Province Wellesley after Richard Wellesley, 1st Marquess Wellesley, who served as the Governor of Madras and Governor-General of Bengal between 1797 and 1805. The term 'Seberang Perai' was believed to be derived from a local phrase used to refer to the northern banks of the Perai
Perai
River.[7] The name of Perai
Perai
originated from the Thai word, plāy (Thai: ปลาย), which meant the end. When Province Wellesley was acquired by the British East India Company
East India Company
in 1800, the Perai
Perai
River served as the original boundary between British Province Wellesley and the Siamese-influenced Kedah
Kedah
to the north. Hence, the locals called the northern banks of the river Seberang Perai, in reference to the Siamese territory across the river. History[edit] Early history[edit] Earliest records of the history of Seberang Perai
Perai
can be traced back to the prehistoric times with evidence of human settlement in Guar Kepah to the south of the Muda River about 5,000 to 6,000 years ago. Seberang Perai
Perai
is located between two main important archaeological sites, Bujang Valley
Bujang Valley
and Sungai Selinsing. Human remains, seashells and other artefacts have been found at the site, indicating the settlement of the area by nomadic Melanesians from the Pacific during the Neolithic era.[8][9] Seberang Perai
Perai
was also part of the Bujang Valley
Bujang Valley
civilisation. The Cherok Tok Kun
Cherok Tok Kun
megalith in Bukit Mertajam, discovered in 1845, contains Pali
Pali
inscriptions, implying that an early Hindu-Buddhist political entity in what is now Kedah
Kedah
had established control over parts of Seberang Perai
Perai
sometime between the 5th and 6th centuries.[10] Henceforth, for much of Seberang Perai's history, the area formed part of Kedah. It was only with the advent of British colonialism in the 18th century that the modern history of Seberang Perai
Perai
would begin. British acquisitions[edit]

British acquisition and expansion of Penang
Penang
(in yellow) occurred between 1786 and 1874, when the final alterations to Penang's boundaries was enacted.[11][12][13][14]

Province Wellesley can be seen in the horizon in this 1818 drawing of George Town.

In 1786, Francis Light
Francis Light
of the British East India Company
East India Company
had landed on Penang
Penang
Island, which at the time was also part of Kedah.[15] After brokering an agreement with the then Sultan of Kedah, Sultan Abdullah Mukarram Shah, regarding the cession of Penang
Penang
Island to the British East India Company, Light returned to the island on 11 August that year and claimed it "in the name of His Britannic Majesty, King George III".[15][16] However, the British East India Company
East India Company
was slow to realise the importance of the hinterland across the Penang
Penang
Strait from Penang Island (then named the Prince of Wales Island). Merchant vessels traversing the Penang
Penang
Strait were often threatened by pirates originating from the Perai
Perai
River.[17] In addition, Kedah
Kedah
was being invaded by Siam and Sultan Abdullah, disgruntled by the lack of military aid as promised by Light, assembled his army in Seberang Perai
Perai
in 1790 to retake the Prince of Wales Island.[15] The planned amphibious assault was thwarted by the British East India Company, which launched night attacks on Kedah's forts. In 1800, the first Lieutenant-Governor of the Prince of Wales Island, Sir George Leith, gained a 189.3 km2 (73.1 sq mi) strip of Seberang Perai
Perai
from Sultan Abdullah and renamed it Province Wellesley.[15][18] The newly acquired land covered an area south of the Perai
Perai
River.[7] Thus, at that point, the Perai River became the international border between the British-controlled Province Wellesley and Kedah. At the time, Province Wellesley was heavily forested and sparsely populated, with a total population of only 5,000.[18] Province Wellesley was subsequently expanded thrice. Following the Siamese conquest of Kedah
Kedah
in 1821, the British and the Siamese agreed in 1831 to demarcate the southernmost Siamese border with Province Wellesley along the Muda River; the British in effect enlarged Province Wellesley to include the area between the Muda River to the north and the Perai River to the south.[7][19][20][21] Province Wellesley's eastern boundaries with Siam was also delineated following another treaty in 1859.[22] The final change to Penang's boundaries was made in 1874 following the Pangkor Treaty between the British Empire and Perak, which included a clause on the demarcation of the Province Wellesley- Perak
Perak
border south of the Kerian River.[18][23] Penang's borders have remained unchanged since then. British rule[edit]

A ship anchored off Nibong Tebal
Nibong Tebal
in the 1900s.

Ever since the British acquisition of Province Wellesley in 1800, the strip of hinterland has been part of the Settlement (and now the State) of Penang.[24] The acquisition of Province Wellesley gave the British East India Company
East India Company
full control of the Penang
Penang
Strait, as well as an agricultural hinterland and a buffer zone to protect the Prince of Wales Island from any cross-strait military invasion.[15][17] it also allowed the British to suppress the pirates at the mouth of the Perai
Perai
River. In 1826, both Province Wellesley and the Prince of Wales Island, along with Singapore
Singapore
and Malacca, were amalgamated into the Straits Settlements, with George Town on the island made as the capital. However, the capital of the Straits Settlements was then relocated to Singapore
Singapore
in 1832.[25] The Straits Settlements was later made a British crown colony under the direct governance of the Colonial Office in London
London
in 1867. As a British crown colony, Province Wellesley was administered by a district officer directly under the Lieutenant-Governor (later Resident Councillor) of Penang, who in turn was subordinate to the Governor of the Straits Settlements based in Singapore. Meanwhile, Province Wellesley continued to witness continuing growth under the British. With its population increasing due to the influx of Malay refugees from Siamese-occupied Kedah, Province Wellesley became the rice bowl of Penang.[26][27] Other than rice and vegetables, other cash crops, such as sugar, coconut and tapioca, were also cultivated in Province Wellesley.[27][28] Due to the abundance of land in Province Wellesley, it became the only area in Penang
Penang
where rubber and palm oil estates were established as well. Other than agriculture, Province Wellesley also began to serve as Penang's transportation hub, a role it continues to play to this day. Butterworth, directly opposite George Town across the Penang
Penang
Strait, was developed in the mid-19th century to serve Penang's logistical needs. Ferry services were established between Butterworth and George Town towards the end of the 19th century; these became the predecessor to the present-day Rapid Ferry.[29] When the pan-Malayan railway was extended into Province Wellesley in the 1900s, both Butterworth and Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
further inland also became important rail termini, leading to the construction of the Butterworth and Bukit Mertajam train stations.[30][31] The growth of the towns of Butterworth and Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
also convinced the British colonial authorities to establish and regulate local governments in Province Wellesley. In 1913, four local boards were set up within Province Wellesley - three rural district boards for the Northern, Central and Southern districts, as well as the Butterworth Town Board.[18] These local boards were upgraded into local councils in 1952; the Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
Town Council was also established in the following year.[32][33][34] World War II[edit] During the early days of the Japanese invasion of Malaya in December 1941, the Royal Air Force
Royal Air Force
and the Royal Australian Air Force
Royal Australian Air Force
units stationed at RAF Butterworth struggled to counter Japanese air raids over Penang
Penang
and took heavy casualties. With RAF Butterworth itself heavily damaged, these Allied units had to withdraw southwards by 15 December.[35] The Imperial Japanese Army
Imperial Japanese Army
subsequently invaded Province Wellesley from the north, with the 25th Army capturing RAF Butterworth on 20 December 1941. As with Penang
Penang
Island, the period of Japanese occupation brought much hardship to civilians in Province Wellesley; especially notorious was the Sook Ching
Sook Ching
massacres implemented against the Chinese populace.[36] Province Wellesley was liberated by the British in September 1945 and was placed under military administration for one year. Post-war era[edit]

Skyline of Butterworth

In 1946, the Straits Settlements was abolished, and the now separate Crown Colony of Penang
Penang
was to be merged into the Malayan Union. The Malayan Union
Malayan Union
was subsequently replaced by the Federation of Malaya
Federation of Malaya
in 1948 and full independence was granted in 1957. After Malaya gained independence in 1957, Province Wellesley was renamed Seberang Perai. The Butterworth and Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
town councils were merged into the surrounding rural district councils in 1961, and between 1973 and 1976, the remaining three rural district councils were amalgamated into the Seberang Perai
Perai
Municipal Council. Following this latest amalgamation of the local councils, all of Seberang Perai
Perai
are administered under a single local government, making the Seberang Perai Municipal Council
Seberang Perai Municipal Council
the biggest local government in Malaysia
Malaysia
in terms of land size. In the decades that followed, the Penang
Penang
state government opened massive industrial estates in Seberang Perai, such as in Perai, Mak Mandin, Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
and Nibong Tebal.[7][26][37][38] In addition, the Port of Penang, which had been located in George Town, was shifted to Butterworth in 1974. The completion of the North-South Expressway, the Penang
Penang
Bridge and the Second Penang
Penang
Bridge by the Malaysian federal government, along with several state-built expressways such as the Butterworth Outer Ring Road, has improved connectivity between the towns in Seberang Perai
Perai
and with Penang
Penang
Island. These developments have boosted the economy of Seberang Perai
Perai
and led to the rapid urbanisation of the municipality. These have also been complemented by the growth of new residential townships, such as Seberang Jaya
Seberang Jaya
and Juru. In recent years, Batu Kawan, where the mainland end of the Second Penang
Penang
Bridge is located, has emerged as a new growth centre, spurred by a number of major projects and millions of investment funds being poured into the town.[26][39]

Aerial view of George Town. The city is physically separated from Butterworth (bottom) by the Penang
Penang
Strait.

Geography[edit] Seberang Perai
Perai
refers to the mainland portion of the State of Penang. It is physically separated from Penang
Penang
Island to the west by the Penang
Penang
Strait. To its north, the Muda River forms the Penang-Kedah border, while a short section of the Kerian River
Kerian River
marks the southern boundary between Penang
Penang
and Kedah. The Penang- Perak
Perak
border also runs to the west of the Penang-Kedah- Perak
Perak
border tripoint in the Kerian River.

Aman Island

With a land area of 751 km2 (290 sq mi), Seberang Perai is nearly 2.6 times the size of Penang
Penang
Island and slightly larger than the total landmass of the Republic of Singapore. Seberang Perai
Perai
is mostly flat. Its highest peak is Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
Hill, looming over the eponymous town of Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
at 451 m (1,480 ft) above sea level. The hill is considered a prominent landmark, as it can be seen from Penang
Penang
Island; conversely, one can view Penang
Penang
Island from its peak.[40] The rivers and coastline of Seberang Perai
Perai
are lined with mangrove swamps.[41] Examples of the mangrove forests include the mouth of the Perai River and the Muda River basin.[42]

Gedung Island

Outlying islets[edit] Two offshore islets, Aman and Gedung islands, are situated off the southern coast of Seberang Perai, within the South Seberang Perai District. Of the two islets, only Aman Island
Aman Island
is sparsely populated. Urban and suburban areas[edit]

Butterworth

Bukit Mertajam

Batu Kawan

Kepala Batas

Nibong Tebal

Perai

Seberang Jaya

Juru

Permatang Pauh

Sungai Jawi

Simpang Ampat

Locations of towns and suburban areas in Seberang Perai

The largest town within Seberang Perai
Perai
is Butterworth, approximately 3 km (1.9 mi) east of George Town, Penang's capital city. Other major towns in Seberang Perai
Perai
include Bukit Mertajam, Perai, Nibong Tebal
Nibong Tebal
and Batu Kawan. Drainage system[edit] The major rivers in Seberang Perai
Perai
include the Muda River, Perai
Perai
River and Kerian River. Off all the rivers in Seberang Perai, the Muda River, which forms the northern border with Kedah, is arguably the most vital; Penang
Penang
obtains up to 80% of its water supply from this river alone.[43] Thus, illegal logging activities that have been carried out upstream in Kedah
Kedah
have periodically generated concerns about Penang's water supply.[44][45]

Penang

Climate chart (explanation)

J F M A M J J A S O N D

    69     32 23

    72     32 24

    146     32 24

    221     32 24

    203     32 24

    178     31 24

    192     31 23

    242     31 23

    356     30 23

    383     30 23

    232     30 23

    114     31 23

Average max. and min. temperatures in °C

Precipitation totals in mm

Source: Bayan Lepas
Bayan Lepas
Regional Meteorological Office

Imperial conversion

J F M A M J J A S O N D

    2.7     89 74

    2.8     90 74

    5.8     90 75

    8.7     89 75

    8     89 76

    7     89 75

    7.6     88 74

    9.5     88 74

    14     87 74

    15     87 74

    9.1     87 74

    4.5     87 74

Average max. and min. temperatures in °F

Precipitation totals in inches

Climate[edit] Like the rest of Malaysia, Seberang Perai
Perai
has a tropical rainforest climate under the Köppen climate classification
Köppen climate classification
(Af), although it also borders on a tropical monsoon climate. Seberang Perai
Perai
does experience slightly drier conditions between December and February of the following year. It sees on average around 2,477 millimetres (97.5 in) of precipitation annually with the lowest being 60 millimetres (2.4 in) in February while the highest was around 210 millimetres (8.3 in) between August and October.[46] Penang's proximity to the island of Sumatra, Indonesia
Indonesia
makes it susceptible to dust particles carried by wind from the perennial but transient forest fires, creating a yearly phenomenon known as the Southeast Asian haze.[47][48] The haze season typically occurs between July and October. Weather forecasts for Seberang Perai
Perai
is served by the Bayan Lepas Regional Meteorological Office on Penang
Penang
Island, which acts as the primary weather forecast facility for northern Peninsular Malaysia.[49]

Climate data for Penang

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year

Average high °C (°F) 31.6 (88.9) 32.2 (90) 32.2 (90) 31.9 (89.4) 31.6 (88.9) 31.4 (88.5) 31.0 (87.8) 30.9 (87.6) 30.4 (86.7) 30.4 (86.7) 30.7 (87.3) 31.1 (88) 31.3 (88.2)

Daily mean °C (°F) 26.9 (80.4) 27.4 (81.3) 27.6 (81.7) 27.7 (81.9) 27.6 (81.7) 27.3 (81.1) 26.9 (80.4) 26.8 (80.2) 26.5 (79.7) 26.4 (79.5) 26.5 (79.7) 26.7 (80.1) 27.0 (80.6)

Average low °C (°F) 23.2 (73.8) 23.5 (74.3) 23.7 (74.7) 24.1 (75.4) 24.2 (75.6) 23.8 (74.8) 23.4 (74.1) 23.4 (74.1) 23.2 (73.8) 23.3 (73.9) 23.3 (73.9) 23.4 (74.1) 23.5 (74.4)

Average rainfall mm (inches) 68.7 (2.705) 71.7 (2.823) 146.4 (5.764) 220.5 (8.681) 203.4 (8.008) 178.0 (7.008) 192.1 (7.563) 242.4 (9.543) 356.1 (14.02) 383.0 (15.079) 231.8 (9.126) 113.5 (4.469) 2,407.6 (94.787)

Average rainy days (≥ 1.0 mm) 5 6 9 14 14 11 12 14 18 19 15 9 146

Mean monthly sunshine hours 248.8 233.2 235.3 224.5 203.6 202.4 205.5 188.8 161.0 170.2 182.1 209.0 2,464.4

Source: NOAA[50]

Government and politics[edit] Local government[edit]

The seat of the Seberang Perai Municipal Council
Seberang Perai Municipal Council
is located at Bandar Perda near Bukit Mertajam.

Main article: Seberang Perai
Perai
Municipal Council Local administration of Seberang Perai, including Butterworth, is under the purview of the Seberang Perai
Perai
Municipal Council, an agency of the Penang
Penang
state government. Headquartered near Bukit Mertajam, the municipal council is responsible for urban planning, heritage preservation, public health, sanitation, waste management, traffic management, environmental protection, building control, social and economic development, and general maintenance of urban infrastructure. The President is appointed by the Penang
Penang
state government for two years, while each of the 24 councillors is appointed for a one-year term. The current President of the Seberang Perai Municipal Council
Seberang Perai Municipal Council
is Rozali Mohamud, who took office in 2017.[51] Districts[edit]

NORTH SEBERANG PERAI

Kepala Batas

CENTRAL SEBERANG PERAI

Bukit Mertajam

SOUTH SEBERANG PERAI

Sungai Jawi

Map of Penang
Penang
with the districts of Seberang Perai
Perai
indicated

Seberang Perai
Perai
is also divided into three administrative districts - North, Central and South. Each district contains a lands and district office headed by a district officer. The lands and district office deals with land administration and revenue; thus it differs from the municipal council, which oversees the provision and maintenance of urban infrastructure. State and federal constituencies[edit] See also: Constituencies of Penang For the unicameral Penang
Penang
State Legislative Assembly, Seberang Perai is divided into 21 state constituencies, more than half of the 40 seats in the entire state. The State Assemblymen are elected into office via Penang-level election, which by convention is held simultaneously with the Malaysian General Election every five years. Penang
Penang
Island is also represented by seven Members of Parliament in the Parliament of Malaysia. The Members of Parliament are elected via the Malaysian General Election, which is held every five years. The current State Assemblymen and Members of Parliament for Seberang Perai
Perai
are as listed below.

Federal constituency Party Member of Parliament State constituency Party State Assemblyman

Kepala Batas (P041) BN Reezal Merican Naina Merican Penaga
Penaga
(N01) BN Mohd Zain Ahmad

Bertam (N02) BN Shariful Azhar Othman

Pinang Tunggal (N03) BN Roslan Saidin

Tasek Gelugor
Gelugor
(P042) BN Shabudin Yahaya Permatang Berangan (N04) BN Omar Haji Abd Hamid

Sungai Dua
Sungai Dua
(N05) BN Muhamad Yusoff Mohd Noor

Telok Ayer Tawar (N06) BN Jahara Hamid

Bagan (P043) DAP Lim Guan Eng Sungai Puyu (N07) DAP Phee Boon Poh

Bagan Jermal (N08) DAP Lim Hock Seng

Bagan Dalam
Bagan Dalam
(N09) DAP Tanasekharan Autherapady

Permatang Pauh
Permatang Pauh
(P044) PKR Wan Azizah Wan Ismail Seberang Jaya
Seberang Jaya
(N10) PKR Afif Bahardin

Permatang Pasir (N11) PAS Mohd Salleh Man

Penanti
Penanti
(N12) PKR Norlela Ariffin

Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
(P045) DAP Steven Sim Chee Keong Berapit
Berapit
(N13) DAP Ong Kok Fooi

Machang Bubok
Machang Bubok
(N14) PKR Lee Khai Loon

Padang Lalang (N15) DAP Chong Eng

Batu Kawan
Batu Kawan
(P046) DAP Kasthuriraani Patto Perai
Perai
(N16) DAP Ramasamy Palanisamy

Bukit Tengah
Bukit Tengah
(N17) PKR Ong Chin Wen

Bukit Tambun
Bukit Tambun
(N18) PKR Law Choo Kiang

Nibong Tebal
Nibong Tebal
(P047) PKR Mansor Othman

Jawi (N19) DAP Soon Lip Chee

Sungai Bakap (N20) PKR Maktar Shapee

Sungai Acheh
Sungai Acheh
(N21) BN Mahmud Zakaria

Judiciary[edit] There are three Magistrates Courts within Seberang Perai, one each for every district. The Butterworth Magistrates Court has jurisdiction for the Northern District, the Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
Magistrates Court over the Central District and the Jawi Magistrates Court handles cases within the Southern District.[52] Demographics[edit]

Juru's Auto-City, within the Central District, at night.

Population distribution by districts (2010)   North (35.28%)   Central (44.33%)   South (20.39%)

As of 2010[update], Seberang Perai
Perai
was populated by 818,197 residents, making it the second most populous local government area in Malaysia after the federal capital city, Kuala Lumpur.[53][54] This also meant that, by 2010, Seberang Perai
Perai
was home to over 53.6% of Penang's population, slightly outnumbering the population of Penang
Penang
Island, Malaysia's second largest city. The population of Seberang Perai
Perai
was estimated to have increased to 891,300 by 2013.[55] Most of Seberang Perai's population is concentrated within the Central District, while the Southern District is least populated.[56] This is due to the recent urbanisation of the more industrialised Central District, which includes Perai, Bukit Mertajam, Bukit Tengah
Bukit Tengah
and Bukit Minyak, and the district's greater economic activity.[55] On the other hand, the ongoing development of the Southern District, specifically around Batu Kawan, has led to its more rapid population growth rate compared to the Northern and Central districts.

Ethnic composition of Seberang Perai
Perai
(2010)[56]

Ethnicities / Nationality

Percentage

Malays

48.96%

Other Bumiputeras

0.33%

Chinese

34.21%

Indians

10.56%

Others

0.30%

Non-Malaysians

5.64%

Ethnicities[edit] As of 2010[update], ethnic Malays constituted nearly 49% of Seberang Perai's population, with most Malays being concentrated in the Northern District.[56] The Chinese made up 34% of the population; while most reside within the Central District, the Southern District has a larger proportion of ethnic Chinese. Another 10.5% of Seberang Perai's population comprised ethnic Indians, the third largest ethnic community. However, in recent years, there has been an influx of foreign workers in the Central District, and as a result, the population of foreigners in this particular district has outstripped that of the Indians.[55] Economy[edit] While the economy of Seberang Perai
Perai
has traditionally been driven by agriculture, since the mid-20th century, the municipality has become heavily industrialised.[55] The first industrial estate was established in Mak Mandin, near Butterworth, in the 1950s under the leadership of the then Chief Minister of Penang, Wong Pow Nee.[38][57][58] The relocation of the Port of Penang
Port of Penang
to Butterworth in 1974 and the completion of several expressways have also boosted the growth of manufacturing as one of the economic mainstays of Seberang Perai, by facilitating the ease of transportation of goods and services.[26][59][60] The resulting rapid urbanisation of Seberang Perai
Perai
has fueled the municipality's housing market; in particular, the Central District has benefited the most in terms of newly-built housing units due to its greater industrial activity and the location of the Penang
Penang
Bridge's terminus within the said district.[61] In recent years, Batu Kawan, within the Southern District, has witnessed massive transformation, with an industrial park, an international technology hub and several other mixed-development projects being planned for the town.[26][39][62][63] Manufacturing[edit] The main industrial zones within Seberang Perai
Perai
are located in Mak Mandin, Perai, Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
and Nibong Tebal.[7][26][37][57] There has been a higher concentration of manufacturing activities within the Central District, which encompasses Perai
Perai
and Bukit Mertajam, making it the most industrialised district within Seberang Perai. In particular, several multinational corporations and Malaysian manufacturing giants, including Honeywell Aerospace, Sony, Mattel, Pensonic, Chevron and Malayawata Steel are based in Perai, due to its proximity to the Port of Penang.[7] Smaller industries, such as foodstuff and textiles, are concentrated in inland areas like Mak Mandin and Nibong Tebal, while Bukit Tengah
Bukit Tengah
near Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
has a significant engineering industry that includes international names like Blaupunkt
Blaupunkt
and Schlumberger. The Batu Kawan
Batu Kawan
Industrial Park is another upcoming manufacturing zone, attracting multinational companies such as VAT, Bose Corporation, Boston Scientific
Boston Scientific
and Robert Bosch GmbH.[26][64] Entrepôt trade[edit] Main article: Port of Penang

View of the Port of Penang
Port of Penang
and George Town in the background.

The Port of Penang
Port of Penang
was relocated from George Town to Butterworth in 1974, in order to expand its container and cargo services.[26][59][60] To date, the Port of Penang
Port of Penang
operates six cargo and container terminals around Butterworth.[65] This has led to the manufacturing boom in Seberang Perai, as the Port of Penang
Port of Penang
has facilitated the ease of export from the factories in Perai.[7][26] The Port of Penang
Port of Penang
handled more than 1.44 million TEUs of cargo in 2016, making it the third busiest seaport in Malaysia.[66] The Port's strategic location allowed it to service not just northern Malaysia, but also southern Thailand. Agriculture[edit] In terms of land usage, agriculture remains the dominant economic sector in Seberang Perai, with about 12,000 hectares (30,000 acres) of land being utilised for agricultural purposes in both the Northern and Southern districts.[55] Seberang Perai
Perai
has historically served as an agricultural rice bowl for Penang, as the inherent lack of land on Penang
Penang
Island necessitated the choice of the mainland for plantations and paddy fields.[27][28] In addition, Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
was once well known as a production centre for rubber, cloves and nutmegs.[26] However, within the State of Penang, the agricultural sector has been declining. This sector has contributed a mere 2.2% of Penang's GDP as of 2014[update], while only 2.7% of Penang's workforce was employed in agriculture-related occupations in the fourth quarter of that year.[67] Services[edit] Seberang Perai
Perai
has also witnessed a growing services sector; while the municipality is not as well known as Penang
Penang
Island as a tourist destination of choice, it does have a developing retail scene. Eco-tourism is another sub-sector that has been recently promoted within Seberang Perai, taking advantage of the municipality's mangrove forests.[42] More recently, Batu Kawan
Batu Kawan
has emerged as a potential growth centre for technological services and the shared services outsourcing sub-sector, with the Penang
Penang
International Technology Park in the works.[26][55][64]

Design Village
Design Village
in Batu Kawan, the biggest outlet mall in Malaysia

Retail[edit] At the time of writing, among the major shopping malls within Seberang Perai
Perai
are Megamal Pinang in Perai, Sunway Carnival Mall
Sunway Carnival Mall
in Seberang Jaya and The Summit Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
Plaza in Bukit Mertajam.[68] As of 2017[update], another shopping mall, GEM Mall in Butterworth, is under construction; it has been touted as the largest shopping mall in northern Malaysia.[69] In 2016, Design Village, Malaysia's largest outlet mall, was opened in Batu Kawan, offering various international fashion and accessory brands such as Gap, Pierre Cardin, Padini, Adidas
Adidas
and Levi's.[70][71] Spanning a total area of 37,161 m2 (400,000 sq ft), Design Village
Design Village
is also the first outlet mall in northern Malaysia. Another famous component of Seberang Perai's retail sub-sector is Juru's Auto-City. An entertainment and retail precinct in Juru, it not only contains several automobile showrooms, but also a varied assortment of retail outlets, eateries and other services. Some of the international names at Juru Auto-City include Audi, Ferrari, Fiat, Porsche, Nando's, Starbucks, Secret Recipe and Subway.[72] In 2016, IKEA, the world's largest furniture retailer, announced that it will open a store in Batu Kawan
Batu Kawan
by 2018, making it the first IKEA outlet in northern Malaysia.[73] Transport[edit] Main article: Transport in Penang Since the latter half of the 20th century, several infrastructural projects have been completed in Seberang Perai, boosting the municipality's connectivity with Penang
Penang
Island, as well as the rest of Peninsular Malaysia. Seberang Perai
Perai
is connected to Penang
Penang
Island via a ferry service, the Penang
Penang
Bridge and the Second Penang
Penang
Bridge, the latter of which is the longest bridge in Southeast Asia. The feasibility of more cross-strait links are being explored at the time of writing.[74] Malaysia's North–South Expressway, part of Asian Highway 2, runs through Seberang Perai, as is Penang's sole section of inter-state rail track operated by the Malayan Railway. Land[edit] See also: Penang
Penang
Bridge, Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah Bridge, and Butterworth railway station

A signboard along the North–South Expressway near Butterworth, depicting the Asian Highway 2 sign.

Butterworth railway station, one of the major train stations in Peninsular Malaysia, has services into Thailand
Thailand
as well.

Aerial view of the Penang
Penang
Bridge, with Perai
Perai
visible in the horizon.

The North-South Expressway is the main highway that runs across the more developed western Peninsular Malaysia; the expressway forms part of Asian Highway 2, as it is connected to Thailand's Phet Kasem Road at its northern end and the Singapore
Singapore
Causeway at its southern end. This expressway runs through Seberang Perai, thus connecting major towns, such as Butterworth, Seberang Jaya, Perai, Juru, Batu Kawan
Batu Kawan
and Nibong Tebal, with other cities and towns along western Peninsular Malaysia, southern Thailand
Thailand
and Singapore. Other major roads and expressways within Seberang Perai
Perai
include the Butterworth Outer Ring Road
Butterworth Outer Ring Road
(BORR) and the Butterworth–Seberang Jaya Toll Road. The BORR was constructed in the 2000s to alleviate traffic congestion along the North–South Expressway, providing drivers from Butterworth with an alternative route to Perai
Perai
to the south. The Prai River Bridge was also built for this purpose, traversing the Perai River that separates Butterworth and Perai. In addition, the BORR is linked to the Butterworth– Seberang Jaya
Seberang Jaya
Toll Road, which was completed in 2007.

The Second Penang
Penang
Bridge (as seen from Penang
Penang
Island in this picture) is currently the longest bridge in Southeast Asia.

Aside from roads and expressways, rail transportation has historically played a vital role in Seberang Perai's economy. The first railway tracks were laid in the 1900s, connecting the area with the rest of Malaya for the first time, and facilitating the transportation of agricultural and mining commodities for export via the Port of Penang.[30][31] Today, about 34.9 km (21.7 mi) of rail track stretches within Seberang Perai
Perai
as part of the Malayan Railway's West Coast Route. Out of the six train stations in Seberang Perai, the two major stations are in Butterworth and Bukit Mertajam, with the former offering services by both the Malayan Railway and the State Railway of Thailand; the Butterworth rail station is also one of the major stops of the Eastern and Oriental Express
Eastern and Oriental Express
between Bangkok
Bangkok
and Singapore. Domestically, the Malayan Railway runs the inter-state Electric Train Service along much of its West Coast Route, allowing train commuters from Penang
Penang
to travel to Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur
in as little as four hours.[75]

Penang
Penang
Sentral in Butterworth as of March 2017

The two bridges that connect Seberang Perai
Perai
with Penang
Penang
Island are the Penang
Penang
Bridge and the Second Penang
Penang
Bridge. The Penang
Penang
Bridge links Perai
Perai
and Gelugor, a southern suburb of Penang's capital city, George Town, and was completed in 1985. At the time of its opening, the bridge was the longest in Southeast Asia. In 2013, it was superseded by the 24 km (15 mi)-long Second Penang
Penang
Bridge to the south, which runs between Batu Kawan
Batu Kawan
and Batu Maung
Batu Maung
near the southeastern tip of Penang
Penang
Island. A major transportation hub, Penang
Penang
Sentral, is being constructed in Butterworth, and the first phase of the project, which consists of an inter-city bus terminal, is slated for completion in 2017.[76] Penang Sentral is strategically located next to Butterworth's Sultan Abdul Halim Ferry Terminal and the Butterworth rail station. Overall, there are eight phases of the Penang
Penang
Sentral project, which aims to integrate all bus, rail and ferry services under a single mixed complex that will also incorporate commercial, residential and retail elements, akin to Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur
Sentral.[77] Public transportation[edit] See also: Rapid Penang The ground public transportation needs within Seberang Perai
Perai
are currently being met by Rapid Penang, the primary public transit bus brand in Penang. At the time of writing, Rapid Penang
Penang
operates 19 public transit routes within Seberang Perai, three cross-strait BEST shuttle bus services towards Penang
Penang
Island, and four interstate routes towards neighbouring Kedah
Kedah
and Perak.[78] Most public transit bus routes originate and terminate in Butterworth, linking it with other towns such as Perai, Bukit Mertajam, Nibong Tebal
Nibong Tebal
and Simpang Ampat, while other routes operate specifically within each of the three districts of Seberang Perai. Other than Rapid Penang, the only other public transit bus operator is Cityliner, which handles a handful of routes within Seberang Perai
Perai
as well.[79] Sea[edit] Main article: Port of Penang See also: Rapid Ferry

A ship at the Port of Penang
Port of Penang
in Butterworth

Currently the most vital harbour within northern Malaysia
Malaysia
and one of the largest in the country, the Port of Penang
Port of Penang
now operates the following facilities around Butterworth.[80]

North Butterworth Container Terminal Butterworth Wharves Prai Wharves Vegetable oil tanker pier Bagan Dalam
Bagan Dalam
Dockyard Prai Bulk Cargo Terminal

The Port of Penang
Port of Penang
handled more than 1.44 million TEU of cargo in 2010, the third largest cargo volume amongst seaports in Malaysia.[66] The Port's strategic location enabled it to serve not just northern Malaysia, but also southern Thailand. Rapid Ferry, which links Butterworth and George Town, has been managed by Prasarana Malaysia
Malaysia
since 2017.[81] This cross-strait shuttle ferry service commenced operations in 1894, making it the oldest surviving ferry service in Malaysia.[29] At present, six ferries ply the Penang Strait between the Sultan Abdul Halim Ferry Terminal
Sultan Abdul Halim Ferry Terminal
in Butterworth and George Town daily.[82] Shopping[edit]

AEON Mall Bukit Mertajam AEON BiG Seberang Jaya AEON BiG Bukit Minyak Aspen Vision City Sunway Carnival Mall Megamal Pinang, Prai Perda City Mall (now closed) Pearl City Mall IKEA
IKEA
Penang Tesco
Tesco
Extra Seberang Perai Tesco
Tesco
Bukit Mertajam Tesco
Tesco
Kelapa Batas Tesco
Tesco
Bagan Ajam Summit Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
Plaza Billion Kota Permai Billion Seberang Jaya Econsave Jawi Econsave Butterworth Econsave Chain Ferry

Healthcare[edit] Public hospitals

Seberang Jaya
Seberang Jaya
Hospital (main) Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
Hospital Sungai Bakap Hospital Kepala Batas Hospital

Private hospitals

KPJ Penang
Penang
Specialist Hospital Bagan Specialist Centre

Sports[edit]

Batu Kawan
Batu Kawan
Stadium Penang
Penang
Golf Resort Jalan Betek MPSP Stadium[83]

Education[edit] There are several higher learning institutions located in Seberang Perai
Perai
but the most prominent are Universiti Sains Malaysia
Malaysia
Engineering Campus located in Nibong Tebal; Universiti Teknologi MARA
Universiti Teknologi MARA
(UiTM) with branches in Penang
Penang
and Bertam; and Politeknik Seberang Perai
Perai
(PSP). Both are situated in the town of Permatang Pauh. Tourism[edit] Penang
Penang
Bird Park in Seberang Jaya
Seberang Jaya
boasts a collection of over 300 species of birds with enormous walk-in aviaries and is the first and largest bird park of its kind in Malaysia. Popular among bird enthusiasts, the park was built in a garden landscaping concept with natural ponds and a vast collection of flora and several other wildlife including mousedeer, giant alaipaima fish, phytons and monitor lizards.[84] A popular recreational park among locals and outsiders alike, the Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
Recreational Forest in Cherok Tok Kun, Bukit Mertajam is a tropical rain forest reserve sprawls over 37 hectars of hilly terrain including the Mertajam hill. The forest contains indigenous rain forest trees that could be over a hundred years old such as the Meranti Seraya (Shorea curtisii) and Meranti Rambai Daun (Shorea acuminate). For the adventurous hikers, there are numerous jungle trail branching out towards the peak and also accessible by jeep and cycling. Other activities include picnicking, swimming by the waterfall and camping.[85] A small village of Mengkuang Titi
Mengkuang Titi
provides homestay programmes for foreign tourists which is the opportunity to live with the local Malay family while experiencing Malay culture and the laid-back lifestyle of rural living. Among the activities during the programme were fruit picking in the orchard, visiting a handicraft centre, Mengkuang-mat-weaving demonstration, a trip cottage industry factories (Malaysian Muffins),bedak sejuk (traditional beauty powder made from rice flour) and soy bean products), visiting the Mengkuang Dam vicinity and the Air Itam
Air Itam
Dalam mangrove reserve, a cultural performance, a stroll through a rubber plantation and an oil palm plantation.[86] Bukit Tambun, a small tranquil fishing village located in the South Seberang Perai
Perai
district, remains a seafood heaven for local and foreign tourists alike. It consists of seafood restaurants dotting along the river mouth with the dining area hovering over the water, serving local delicacies which are fresh daily catch from the sea.[87] Pulau Aman
Pulau Aman
is an island off-coast of Bukit Tambun
Bukit Tambun
located at the south-east of Penang
Penang
island. It consists of a quaint Malay fishing village. The island is accessible to the public via ferry boat from the Batu Musang jetty in Batu Kawan. There is an old well, Telaga Emas (Golden Well) located right next to the sea.[88] One of the highlights in the town of Nibong Tebal
Nibong Tebal
include the firefly watching along the river of Sungai Krian. This can be done late in the evening by boat as visitors can have the opportunity to enjoy the dazzling display of fireflies in the mangrove swamp.[89] In fact one of the major events in Seberang Perai
Perai
is the St. Anne's Novena and Feast which is held end of July annually at the St. Anne's Church, Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
which attract nearly over 100,000 pilgrims from all over the country and as far as neighbouring countries such as the Philippines, Russia, Singapore
Singapore
and Australia.[citation needed] Recently, the North Seberang Perai
Perai
Local Plan 2020 Draft have developed several heritage trails, namely the Archeo-Tourism Trail, Heritage Trail and Beach Recreation Trail. The Archeo-Tourism Trail would cover an old fort at Kota Kuala Muda, an archaeology complex in Sungai Emas, the Langkasuka ruins in Kota Aur, an early archaeology site in Guar Kepah, a candi (temple) in Permatang Pasir, the Merdeka Bridge-cum-fort in Bumbung Lima and a border cornerstone in Ekor Kucing. Besides that, The Heritage Trail would commence from the Butterworth railway station
Butterworth railway station
through the Sultan Abdul Halim ferry terminal, a traditional blacksmith shop in Permatang Benuan, the Capal Jago chapal maker's shop in Kepala Batas and terminates at the whispering market in the Kuala Muda fishing village. Aside from that, the Beach Recreation Trail would cover the Pantai Bersih beach, Bagan Ajam beach, Pantai Teluk Molek (Robina Park) beach, Teluk Air Tawar recreation park, Kuala Bekah beach, Pantai Penaga, Sungai Muda sanctuary park, Pantai Kamloon recreation park, Bertam Vision Park, Padang Cempedak recreation park and Air Hitam Dalam recreation park.[90] Furthermore, the Central Seberang Perai
Perai
Local Plan 2020 draft would include the upgrade of the Penang
Penang
Bird Park, the Seberang Jaya
Seberang Jaya
Expo, proposals of rural homestay project in Sama Gagah, Pematang Pasir and Kubang Semang, promoting education-based tourism with MICE facilities in Prai and eco-tourism in Mengkuang Dam
Mengkuang Dam
and Cherok Tok Kun.[90] Image Gallery[edit]

St. Anne's Church, Bukit Mertajam

Old Shrine of St. Anne's Church, Bukit Mertajam

Bukit Mertajam
Bukit Mertajam
Recreational Forest

A Rapid Ferry
Rapid Ferry
at the Sultan Abdul Halim Jetty in Butterworth.

Tow Boo Kong Temple, Raja Uda, Butterworth

Bird's eye view of Perai
Perai
and Penang
Penang
Bridge

Batu Musang Jetty where visitors can take a boat ride to Aman Island from Batu Kawan.

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External links[edit]

Official website of Seberang Perai Municipal Council
Seberang Perai Municipal Council
in English

v t e

State of Penang

Capital: George Town

Topics

Elections

Constituencies

Executive

Chief Minister Governor

List

Geography History

George Town

International rankings Legislative Penangites Symbols

Coats of arms Flag

Society

Architecture

List of tallest skyscrapers

Cuisine Education Politics Transportation Tourist attractions

Administrative divisions

Capital city

George Town

Zones

Penang
Penang
Island Seberang Perai

Districts

Northeast Penang
Penang
Island Southwest Penang
Penang
Island North Seberang Perai Central Seberang Perai South Seberang Perai

Suburbs and towns

Air Itam Balik Pulau Batu Ferringhi Batu Kawan Batu Lanchang Bayan Lepas Bukit Mertajam Butterworth Gelugor Jelutong Kepala Batas Nibong Tebal Paya Terubong Perai Permatang Pauh Pulau Tikus Simpang Ampat Sungai Jawi Tasek Gelugor Tanjung Bungah Tanjung Tokong Teluk Bahang Teluk Kumbar

Residential neighbourhoods

Alma Ayer Rajah Bandar Baru Air Itam Bagan Ajam Bagan Dalam Bagan Jermal Bagan Luar Bandar Bertam Perdana Bandar Cassia Bandar Perda Bandar Tasek Mutiara Batu Maung Batu Uban Bayan Baru Bukit Jambul Bukit Minyak Bukit Tambun Bukit Tengah Ceruk Tok Kun Green Lane Juru Kota Permai Mak Mandin Minden Heights Mount Erskine Penaga Penanti Pinang Tunggal Relau Rifle Range Seberang Jaya Seri Tanjung Pinang Sungai Ara Sungai Dua Sungai Dua Sungai Nibong Sungai Pinang Taman Tun Sardon Teluk Air Tawar Valdor

Villages

Berapit
Berapit
New Village Gertak Sanggul Jawi New Village Kampung Buah Pala Kampung Selamat Kampung Seronok Kubang Semang Machang Bubok
Machang Bubok
New Village Mengkuang Titi Pantai Acheh Permatang Damar Laut Permatang Pasir Permatang Tinggi Sungai Acheh Sungai Lembu Sungai Udang Teluk Tempoyak

Islands

Aman Betong Gedung Jerejak Kendi Lovers' Penang Rimau Tikus

Commons Wikisource Category

T

.