Malaysia Championing the Halal Industry

Feb '19

Malaysia is recognised as one of the global leaders of the Halal industry, once again leading the Global Islamic Economic Indicator for the fifth year in a row as reported by The State of the Islamic Economy Global Report 2018/2019.

The country’s success as a leading pioneer in the Halal industry began in 1974 when the Research Centre for the Islamic Affairs Division in the Prime Minister’s Office began issuing a standardised Halal certification which today, has become the most sought-after Halal logo for its instant global recognition.

This historic step became the catalyst that set into motion a string of initiatives supported by effective frameworks from Malaysia’s governmental institutions, which most notably includes pioneering the development of Islamic banking and finance to cement the country’s status as a global Halal hub.

Today, Malaysia exemplifies a country that support the growth of global Halal ecosystem, which in addition to Halal certification systems and Islamic banking, also encompasses standards and regulations, infrastructure, logistics and human capital development.

A Trusted Partner in the Global Halal Industry

With the total spending of the halal economy reaching US$2.1 trillion 2017 and expected to rise to US$3 trillion in 2023 (Source: Thomson Reuters), Malaysia has undertaken important initiatives across regulation, trade, and industry to further develop the Halal industry.

One distinguished initiative is harmonising Halal accreditation across the world. Malaysia’s Department of Islamic Development (JAKIM), a body that recognises 67 certification authorities from 41 countries, is working towards establishing a world body that unifies Halal standards in order to benefit Muslim consumers, manufacturers, and traders around the world.

Another exciting development that kicked off in the fourth quarter of 2018 is Malaysia's strategic partnership in the “Halal Silk Route”, which is set to change the logistics landscape between Malaysia and China. The “Halal Silk Route” promises end-to-end logistics services with integrated Halal value-added services, hassle-free documentation processes, and competitive transportation cost. This initiative links the 2.1 billion global Muslim population through the trade of Halal products, and is considered to be the missing link that completes the Halal trade value chain globally.

In addition to these unifying initiatives, Malaysia is also increasing its contribution to the global Halal market with initiatives supporting the development of local companies with products and services that serve the Muslim consumer.

Serving the Global Muslim Consumer

In 2017, Malaysia recorded RM43.3 billion in halal exports, which made up 4.6% of the nation’s total exports of RM935.4 billion. Top importers of halal products from Malaysia were Singapore (RM4.9 billion), China (RM4.9 billion), Japan (RM2.8 billion), the US (RM2.7 billion) and Indonesia (RM2.2 billion).

Malaysia External Trade Development Corp (MATRADE) is expecting the export value of Halal products and services to further increase by 5% in 2019 to serve the significant upsurge in global demand for Halal products and services.

With the availability of government financial assistance and incentives, local small and medium enterprises (SMEs) can leverage the nation’s competitive advantage to tap into the growing industry. However, Malaysia’s advantage is not limited to its local industry, for its global positioning as a Halal hub also makes it an ideal choice for businesses from other nations to access the global Halal market.

Matrade chief executive officer Datuk Wan Latiff Wan Musa stated, “Lately, we have received quite a number of Japanese food companies opening their operations here just to get Jakim certification. That reflects how companies, especially in non-Muslim countries, are looking to sell Halal products.”

A Gateway for Businesses Serving the Global Halal Market

The Malaysia International Halal Showcase (MIHAS) organised by MATRADE also acts as a gateway for businesses to access both the local and South East Asian Halal market, as well as tap into the opportunity of the global Halal market.

As the world’s largest and highly anticipated largest Halal trade show, MIHAS is a convenient one-stop event where those who are interested to tap into the booming global Halal markets can discover the latest offerings and advances across the dynamic Halal ecology.

MIHAS returns for its 16th edition from 3 – 6 April 2019 at MITEC Kuala Lumpur. Organised by Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE), the 4-day event will connect over 1,000 exhibitors and leaders of the global Halal industry with an expected 30,000 trade visitors from 72 countries.

Those interested to participate in MIHAS 2019 as a trade exhibitor or visitor can learn more about the event on their website, www.mihas.com.my.