Malaysian Expertise Sought to Set Up Halal Parks in Gulf Countries

5/15/2010 — BERNAMA
Malaysian expertise has been sought to help build halal parks in West Asia in view of the rising awareness about food security.
Halal Industry Development Corporation (HDC) Chief Executive Officer Datuk Seri Jamil Bidin said the request came from some Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries that had realised their potential as a gateway to the Middle East market.
“So basically, they would like to develop products that come from anywhere in the world and become a distribution centre for other Middle East countries,” he told Bernama here.
To do this, he said, they would like to have a dedicated area.
“Since we already have the experience in setting up and developing halal parks in Malaysia, they want to use our expertise to work with them to set up halal parks in their countries.”
Jamil is a member of the East Coast Economic Region Development Council Investment Mission to Abu Dhabi in the United Emirates and Riyadh and Jeddah in Saudi Arabia from May 7 to 17, led by for prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.
Jamil said GCC countries presently imported more than 85 per cent of their products especially food products.
“When you talk about GCC countries, halal is very important.
“They want to make sure that food products that they import are halal. So this give an opportunity for us to collaborate with them on the issue of food security especially since Malaysia is well-known for its halal initiatives,” he said.
He said that besides bringing knowledge, Malaysian producers could also supply goods to these countries through the halal parks.
He said when the matter was raised during a meeting with Abu Dhabi Investment House, they were the people very interested in this project.
“In the next two weeks, they are going to visit Malaysia then we will have further discussion once they are there.”
Jamil said Malaysia would be the right partner for this collaboration to address the food security issue since it had the expertise especially in handling the halal food chain.
Not many countries had the expertise in this area, he said.
“Some countries only produce halal products but they do not have the expertise to manage the halal value chain,” he added.
He said the government, through HDC, was also promoting Malaysia as a reference centre for halal related matters.