The National Library (Perpustakaan Negara Malaysia) is in-built with diverse functions and services; supported by highly advanced facilities to put forward the best it can give to the public.
Officiated by former Deputy Prime Minister YAB Dato' Seri Anwar Ibrahim on 16 th December 1994, the opening ceremony of the National Library of Malaysia marked a significant occasion. The National Library is housed under the Ministry of Culture, Arts and Tourism today.
Occupying 2.2 hectares, the Library proudly reflects a Malaysian identity in terms of the building's design. The design was conceptualized using the idea of the traditional Malay headgear - the tengkolok, which symbolizes pride and respect of our nation’s culture. The tengkolok-shaped roofs cap an open-air amphitheatre space; symbolizing the unity of our country.
The National Library is responsible for providing to the public an accumulated knowledge at national level and no less for present and future generations to come. To continuously strengthen their collection, the National Library continuously acquires increasing numbers of publications. The current collections are divided into Malaysiana Collection, Rare Collection, Manuscripts, Serials, General Monograph Collection, Media Resources, Borrowing, United Nations Publications and the National Collection.
- Above all, the National Library takes the most pride in its Malaysiana Collection. It is a compilation of library materials whose contents are largely related to Malaysia and its people. The literature heritages of Malaysia is carefully collected, preserved and stored to ensure the future generations’ accessibility to intellectual materials.
- The Library also comprises of a rare collection and a separate assortment of Malay Manuscripts; totaling in 2,960 copies in original form and 2,402 titles in microforms. Old and valuable, these manuscripts are currently tucked away in the repository of the National Library.
- With the continued arrival of publications, the Serials Collection tracks and provides foreign magazines, newspapers and journals for easy reading and research purposes.
- The Library also comprises of a General Monograph Collection of local and foreign printed materials such as seminar proceedings, thesis and books covering a myriad of subjects.
- The National Library uses Media Resources to keep up to date with constant advances in the electronic media. A wide range of tapes, compact discs (CDs), 16mm films, video tapes and slides can be utilized in facilities such as TV booths, viewing rooms, sound rooms and a public theatre.
- Borrowing books and other materials are dependable on the Librarians’ discretion and as always, abiding by the National Library Act. In addition to most of the local materials at the National Library of Malaysia, it also holds United Nations Publications. Materials affiliated to the United Nations also include United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and et cetera.
- The National Collection consists of both tangible and non-tangible materials received under the Deposit of Library Materials Act in 1986 that substituted the Preservation of Books Act 1966. Every publisher in Malaysia is rule-bound to deposit 5 copies of tangible materials and 2 copies of non-tangible materials to the National Library.
Its is highly recommended to all visitors to allocate the span of at least a few hours to tour the many sections and intellectual material the National Library has to offer. The Library is open on Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10am to 7pm and on Sundays from 10am to 6pm. It will be closed on Mondays and public holidays. For further enquiries you can also contact the Library at 03- 26871700.