HDC, SMIDEC In Strategic Collaboration With Nestle

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 10 (Bernama) — Halal Industry
Development Corporation (HDC) and the Small and Medium Industries
Development Corporation (SMIDEC) have entered into a strategic
collaboration with Nestle (Malaysia) Bhd to enhance the capacity and
capability of small and medium entrepreneurs (SMEs).

Under the collaboration, SMIDEC, via an evaluation system, would
identify and recommend SMEs in the halal industry who can become
competent suppliers to Nestle.

HDC Chief Executive Officer, Datuk Seri Jamil Bidin said the
corporation would assist selected SMEs and Nestle in promoting
Malaysia’s halal products internationally.

Speaking at a press conference after the signing of a Memorandum
of Agreement between HDC, SMIDEC and Nestle here on Monday, Jamil said
the corporation would assist Nestle with its on-going halal food
development, training and consultancy programmes for SMEs.

Nestle (Malaysia) Managing Director Sullivan O’Carroll said the company has about 150 suppliers and 40 were local companies.

“In terms of value, the local companies supplied only 10 per cent
of the raw materials and ingredients to Nestle”, O’Carroll said.

Present to witness the signing ceremony were International Trade
and Industry minister, Datuk Mustapa Mohamed and SMIDEC Chairman Datuk
Ir. Mohamed Al Amin Abdul Majid.

Meanwhile, SMIDEC Chief Executive Officer Hafsah Hashim said
several Japanese companies were keen to invest in Malaysia’s halal food
and beverage industry.

“One company has begun operations in Johor while SMIDEC is now
luring another five to six Japanese companies to invest in the
country”, she said.

Habsah also said in order to draw greater SME partcipation, SMIDEC
provided matching grants for the development and promotion of halal

As at June 30, 2009, SMIDEC approved 270 applications for a matching grant of RM15.88 million.