: Bumiputera participation in the halal industry is still lagging as up to 70 per cent of the players are non-Bumiputeras.
Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation Chief Executive Officer Datuk Dzulkifli Mahmud said the government was now enhancing efforts at boosting the Bumiputera participation in the industry.
However, support will continue to be extended to non-Bumiputeras to help grow their businesses.
“A majority of Bumiputeras are Muslims and they should take the advantage of this growing sector,” he told reporters in an interview in conjunction with the Malaysia International Halal Showcase 2016 (Mihas 2016).
Dzulkifli said the halal industry is universal and not limited to only the Muslim community and demand for halal products and services is increasing globally, as evidenced in non-Muslim countries like Japan, China, the United States as well as Europe, among others.
“For Mihas, I hoped to see greater participation from Bumiputera companies. I also urge all the states to gear up efforts to bring forth more Bumiputera products to expose them to a bigger market,” he added.
On Mihas this year, Dzulkifli said he sees the response in terms of the number of visitors as being very strong and satisfactory, especially from overseas, despite the current economic scenario.
“The overall sales performance for the first two days was very encouraging, taking into account the increasing number of new products introduced this year, alongside improved packaging and product presentation,” he added.
He said, Mihas 2016 registered RM13.63 million in actual sales and RM144.57 million for sales under negotiation on the first day.
The second day of the trade exhibition registered RM11.51 million in actual sales and RM164.32 million for potential sales under negotiation.
Dzulkifli said the final figure would be released after the exhibition.
Mihas, a premier trade show for halal products, has been held since 2004. This year’s show is from March 30-April 2.