China-Malaysia pact on halal products

Malaysia’s East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC) has signed an agreement with the Ningxia China economic bureau to explore close working relations for halal products.

The Ningxia Light and Textile Industrial Bureau (NLTIB) has been designated the centre for halal food manufacturing for China by the Chinese government.
The scope of the cooperation between the two agencies will cover manufacturing, business matching, halal certification as well as information sharing and research and development.
Pahang Mentri Besar Adnan Yaakob, who presided over the signing ceremony last Thursday, said the collaboration will provide a boost to Pahang’s own halal park that was developed by the ECERDC.
“The state is well positioned to step up the development of the halal industry, especially since the focus is on agricultural produce and agro-based products. Commercial agriculture and smallholdings will benefit from the demand these halal industries are likely to create,” he said.
ECERDC chief executive officer Jebasingam Issace John said said the cooperation was an example of the new model for international cooperation for the halal industry which is estimated to be worth US$2.13 trillion (RM6.49 trillion) annually, and growing.
“There is now an international halal superhighway facilitating the cross-border flow of products and services that have a halal lineage. The memorandum of understanding [MoU] will boost bilateral trade between Malaysia and China and enable ECERDC and Ningxia Province to strengthen our respective positions along this lucrative highway,” he said.
Malaysia, which aspires to be a global halal hub, has emerged as one of the leading players in the halal economy.
In 2011, the export value of halal products was RM35.4 billion or 5.1% of total exports.
ECERDC has started to leverage its locational advantage to enhance its share of Malaysia’s robust halal industry.
Investments, both domestic direct and foreign direct, are the key and ECERDC has grown to become an investment destination of choice.
Between 2007 and 2012, it attracted a staggering RM37 billion in investments, with RM12 billion committed in 2012. This is a historical high for the region, and it surpassed the original investment target of RM10 billion for the year.
Of committed investments in 2012, 27% was for tourism, 37.5% for logistics, 16.8% for manufacturing, 10.4% for property development and 8.3% for agriculture.
Jebasingam added that in ECERDC, there are three halal industrial parks which are well-positioned to share their knowledge and expertise in the planning and development of successful halal parks and the MoU also provides for an exchange of development blueprints and the layout of identified industrial parks as well as the extension of investment incentives and preferential policies to qualified investors.
He said the signing of the agreement followed the recent collaboration agreement for the Malaysia China-Kuantan Industrial Park, proposed by Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak last April in response to the Qinzhou Industrial Park which was announced by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao.
(Source: Free malaysia today)

Ningxia Light and Textile Industrial Bureau (NLTIB)