JAKARTA, June 25 (Bernama) — Indonesia has asked New
Zealand to certify its meat products exported to Indonesia with Halal
certification, meaning it had been slaughtered in line with Islamic
practice, China’s Xinhua news agency reported quoting Indonesian
Foreign Affairs Minister Hasan Wirayuda as saying here on Thursday.
Speaking on the sidelines of his meeting with visiting New Zealand
Foreign Minister Murray McCully, Hasan disclosed that he had conveyed
to his NZ counterpart the Halal certification demand on New Zealand’s
meat products exported to Indonesia during the meeting.
“Foreign Minister McCully asked for more time to comply with the
Halal certification demand on meat products imported from New Zealand,”
Wirayuda told reporters here.
Wirayuda said that the demand was initially submitted by MUI (
Indonesian Muslim cleric council), and had been conveyed by Indonesian
foreign affairs ministry to Australia and New Zealand governments
Citing MUI’s demand, Wirayuda said that the government-sanctioned
Muslim cleric council asked Halal certification must be fulfilled no
later than October this year.
MUI’s Halal certification demand is aimed at assuring that meats
imported from New Zealand are allowed to be consumed by Muslims in
Indonesia is the world’s largest Muslim country, with 80 percent of its more than 230 million population being Muslims.
Wirayuda said that details on the Halal certification on New
Zealand’s meat products exported to Indonesia would be discussed by his
New Zealand counterpart with Indonesian Trade Minister Mari Pengestu
during McCully’s visit to Jakarta ended on June 26.
According to Wirayuda, the trading value between Indonesia and New
Zealand had been increasing from US$860 million in 2007 to US$1.25
billion in 2008.