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Industry master plan ready for govt approval


February 6, 2008

Industry master plan ready for govt approval

A master plan for the halal industry will be presented to the government by end of this month, the chief executive officer of Halal Industry Development Corporation, Jamil Bidin, said Tuesday.

"We have completed the master plan and we are ready to submit to the government through the Economic Planning Unit (EPU).

"We are waiting for a date from EPU now to make presentation to the National Implementation Directorate (NID) and the National Implementation Task Force (NITF)," he told reporters after the official launch of World Halal Forum 2008 here.

Jamil said the masterplan was a comprehensive blueprint encompassing a three-year roadmap for the development of the country's halal industry which is rapidly expanding.

One of its main agenda is to help boost the country's gross domestic product from 5.8 percent to 8.7 percent by 2020 through export value, human capital development and added resources in various key disciplines, besides providing value-added services and products.

Besides that, the master plan will focus on industries related to agriculture, food-processing and manufacturing, cosmetics and skin-care, halal ingredients, together with downstream activities like branding and promotions.

In addition, the blueprint will also focus on strengthening the services sector such as international halal certificate, halal training and research and development (R&D).

On market access to the European market, Jamil said the HDC will be having industry dialogue in Netherland with government officials and industry players to find out on how Malaysia can gain market access into the market, particularly for food-related items.

The promoter of the World Halal Forum 2008, KasehDia Sdn Bhd together with industry players recently suggested that HDC seeks an annual tariff rate quota (TRQ) of between 1,500 tonnes and 2,000 tonnes of processed poultry meat from the European Commission (EC).

Jamil said having the TRQ, Malaysian companies will not only get access to the European market but at the same time improve their quality and safety standards to be in compliance with the European Union (EU).

Currently, there is only one Malaysian company which is already approved by the EC to export processed poultry meat products to the EU, exporting only about 50 tonnes per annum.

In June 2006, the EC introduced the TRQ to limit the import of frozen poultry meat products and only Brazil and Thailand received the quota after completing their negotiations with EC.

The World Halal Forum which is to be held on May 12 and 13, is expected to attract some 1,200 participants from 55 countries.

Courtesy Bernama

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