A convention to develop an international network of batik enthusiasts will be held in the hope of fostering closer ties among batik-producing countries.

Set to take place in December, the three-day convention, which will be known as the Kuala Lumpur International Batik Convention, is part of the Malaysia Batik – Crafted for the World movement.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s wife Datin Paduka Seri Endon Mahmood, who mooted the idea for the movement, said the convention would create a forum to discuss the batik craft and for those in the industry to exchange ideas.

“I would like to see batik manufacturers, artists, students, lecturers and academics and also enthusiasts at the convention in December.

“We hope participants will share techniques, innovations, technologies and marketing strategies and focus on the long-term relevance, growth, progress and prominence of the industry internationally.

“So far, we have confirmed speakers from the United States, Britain, India, Indonesia and of course, Malaysia,” Endon said, adding that she was awaiting confirmation from speakers from Japan, China and Sri Lanka.

The convention, with the theme “The Business of Batik,” will be held at the Putra World Trade Centre here from Dec 8 to 10.

The fashion event is organised by The Star and presented by Tourism Malaysia and L’Oreal Paris.

Endon, who met local and foreign reporters at the function yesterday, thanked the press for helping to spread the word about “the work that we do whether it is charity work or work for the batik industry.”