The discovery of tin by Long Jaafar brought about an influx of immigrants to Perak. Today, Perak has developed into a harmonious multi-racial society characterised by a diversity of language, culture and heritage.
The present sultanate traces its origins to Sultan Muzaffar Shah, the eldest son of the last Sultan of Melaka. Because of its rich tin deposits, Perak constantly faced outside threats to its sovereignty. The state was first ravaged by the Achinese in the 16th century. After 1641, the Dutch attempted to established a monopoly over Perak's tin trade by building fofts on Pangkor Island and at the mouth of Perak River, but without great success. In the 18th century, Perak was threatened by the Bugis in the South and the Thai in the north. The state was saved from the Thai domination with British assistance in the 1820s.
The growing importance of tin on the world market led to an influx of Chinese miners into the rich tin fields of Larut. This development however, destabilized the traditional Malay policy in the Perak River Valley. In the 1870s the state was torn by a succession dispute to the throne and war in Larut between tueding Chinese tin miners. This led to the British intervention in 1874 when they impose the Pangkor Engagement on the Perak chiefs and took control of the state.
Constant apposition from the Perak Chiefs resulted in the assassination of the first British Resident and a brief war. The state later became a model for the development of British 'residential system' and in 1896 became one the four Malay states forming the Federated Malay States.
Perak has a proud track record of making the best of every circumstances. Despite the 'tin slump in 1983, it has succeeded in restructuring its economic development, resulting in continuous industrial growth. A sound infrastructure and facilities of international standard make it an ideal environment for business enterprise.
Originally an obscure kampung with dilapidated buildings, Ipoh, the town that tin built, has become one of the largest cities in Malaysian. Poised to become a focal point of industry, business, investment, education and social activities, Ipoh reflects the overall progress and development that the state is experiencing.