Malaysia: Halal trade fair to attract global participants

DUBAI: The size of total global halal market (including all halal food, non food products and services) ranges from a minimum of $1.2 trillion to $2 trillion per annum, according to experts in the industry.

More than 80 per cent of the world’s halal trade, is conducted by non-Muslim countries from both in the West and East, who have become the biggest exporters of halal products in the world, by utilising the halal brand to their economic benefit.

The UAE will be among top countries that will participate at  the forthcoming 8th Malaysia International Halal Showcase 2011 (Mihas 2011) scheduled to be held from April 6 to 9 at Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, in Malaysia.

This annual event is the world’s largest Halal trade fair, where International and local Exhibitors will showcase halal products related to beverages, food, herbal, body care products, pharmaceuticals, toiletries, cosmetics, packaging, banking and insurance.

Speaking to The Gulf Today ahead of the event, the Senior Trade Commissioner of Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (Matrade) in Dubai, Dato Dzulkifli Mahmud explained that Mihas 2011 aims to reach out to the halal players in the international market with expectations of attracting over 500 buyers from 50 countries, specially after last year’s achievement at Mihas, where a total sales of $400 million was realised, with over 32000 trade visitors from 81 countries participating.

The top five product or service sectors sourced by buyers last year were palm oil based products, processed food and beverages, confectionary, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics and skin care products.

Among the top ten countries with the highest sourcing value were the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Ukraine, Australia, Japan, Morocco, Singapore, Vietnam, China, Hong Kong and South Africa.

Mahmud said that in conjunction with Mihas 2011, Matrade will be organising an Incoming Buying Mission (IBM) which will be held from April5 to 6 at Menara Matrade, Kuala Lumpur. This programme is an integral component of Mihas, which acts as a platform for Malaysian exporters and foreign exhibitors to meet with international buyers.

The theme of the event is ‘Expanding your business horizon’.

Over the past seven years, Mihas has succeeded in creating extensive business opportunities and networking for various halal industry players worldwide. Mihas has also been the focal point for global traders, entrepreneurs and manufacturers to promote and launch their halal products and services, said Dato Dzulkifli.

Malaysia as a member of Organisation of Islamic Countries gives strong emphasis in manufacturing and exporting of halal products and services across the globe, he said.

He added that several Malaysian companies have a lot to offer to buyers from GCC countries, participation during the Mihas 2011 offers ample of opportunities to these companies.

Dato Dzulkifli said that Malaysia’s halal certification has been recognised internationally and its acceptance would make it easier for Malaysian firms to establish business ties with countries worldwide.

“This will be the best platform for Muslim and foreign countries to acknowledge and adopt Malaysia’s halal certification system,” he said.

He disclosed that more quality exporters and participants are also expected at the event. The Halal Malaysia Week is also aimed at expanding the growth of the global halal industry through business matching, a trade exhibition, forum and research.

“This year, we are targeting more quality exhibitors for this event, and encourage both local and foreign export-ready producers to participate,” he said

Besides Mihas, there are two other events which will take place concurrently, namely the World Halal Research Summit (WHR) from April6-7 and the World Halal Forum (WHF) themed “The Power of Values in Global Markets, to be held from 4-5 April at the same venue.

Over the past seven years, Mihas has succeeded in creating extensive business opportunities and networking for various halal industry players worldwide.

The Mihas 2011 will not just restrict itself to the ASEAN territory alone, but will enjoy global assistance through the participation of International Pavilions from several countries.

The exhibition will display a spectrum of halal products & services.  It is a one-stop platform for networking, meeting the leading pioneers of the halal industry and establishing contacts.

The number of booths for this year’s event has been reduced to 514 from 600 booths (in 2009) as organisers are looking at attracting only quality products to be showcased at the event. 30 per cent of the participatants are expected to be foreigners from over 20 countries