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Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (Sabah)

Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (DBP) was established in Johor Bahru on the 22 June 1956 in the midst of the anxiety of anticipating the country’s independence. During its early stage the DBP was situated at Bukit Timbalan, Johor Bahru where it began to undertake the formidable task of developing and disseminating Malay language as the national and official language of the near-independent nation. The implementation of this task realised the first objective of establishing DBP, that is to fulfill the aspiration of the people who had striven from as early as the 1950’s to elevate Malay language to the status of the national language of a free and sovereign nation.

Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka was relocated from Johor Bahru to the capital, Kuala Lumpur, in 1957. This was to faicilitate its task since Malay was declared as the national and sole official language of the country. In 1959, under the Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka Ordinance 1959, DBP was raised to the status of a statutory body. Consequently, DBP was granted the autonomy to formulate its own specific policies, namely to organize programmes for the development and promotion of Malay language and literature, and to publish and market books competitively in accordance with the principles and practices of the publishing industry and profession.

On 31 January 1962, DBP moved to its premises at Jalan Lapangan Terbang Lama which is presently named as Jalan Dewan Bahasa. In 1977, DBP spread its wings to East Malaysia by opening two branches, DBP Sabah Branch in Kota Kinabalu, and DBP Sarawak Branch in Kuching. In 1999, two regional offices were opened, namely the DBP Northern Region at Bukit Mertajam, Pulau Pinang and the DBP Eastern Region at Kota Bharu, Kelantan. In 2003, the DBP Southern Region in Johor Bahru, Johor began its operations. In the same year, the new DBP building was completed and it now stands majestically at its present location.


  1. To develop and enrich the national language in all fields including science and technology.

  2. To promote literary talents especially in the national language.

  3. To print or publish or assist in the printing or publication of books, magazines, pamphlets and other forms of literature in the national language as well as in other languages.

  4. To standardize the spelling and pronunciation, and to coin appropriate terminologies in the national language.

  5. To encourage the correct use of the national language.

  6. To encourage the extensive use of the national language of all purposes, in accordance with the existing laws.

Website: http://www.dbp.gov.my