Matrade Bags IDB’s Islamic Solidarity Prize

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 24 (Bernama) — Malaysia External Trade
Development Corporation (Matrade) has been awarded the Islamic
Development Banks (IDB) Islamic Solidarity Prize for its efforts in
promoting trade among Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC)
member nations.

In a statement here, Friday, Matrade said the prize was “to
recognise, reward and encourage any activity of outstanding merits in
promoting works in Islamic economics, banking and finance towards the
realisation of the Islamic value”.

Matrade chief executive officer, Datuk Noharuddin Nordin, who
accepted the award in Istanbul yesterday, said it was an endorsement of
its commitment to promote trade between OIC members as well as trade
based on Islamic precepts.

“To boost trade and promote Islamic trade and commerce, Matrade
has set up a secure foundation of strategic programmes that will
realise both these goals.

“Our efforts in promoting halal products and services globally,
our ongoing series of marketing missions to the Middle East and a
programme to unlock the trade potential between OIC nations has enabled
Matrade to position itself as a role model and champion of global
Islamic trade,” he said.

Noharuddin said the agency was also involved in training officials
from OIC countries under the Malaysian Technical Cooperation Programme
and in collaboration with the Islamic Development Bank.

For the first eight months of this year, Malaysias total trade
with the OIC member nations rose by 36.1 per cent to RM81.19 billion
compared with RM59.67 billion in the corresponding period in 2007.

Malaysias exports to OIC members increased by 36.3 percent to RM45.53 billion from RM33.41 billion in 2007.

Imports increased by 35.8 per cent to RM35.66 billion from 26.26 billion in 2007.

Malaysias top three trading partners within the OIC were
Indonesia, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, recording trade worth
RM31 billion, RM13.6 billion and RM7.68 billion respectively.

Exports to OIC member nations include electrical and electronic
products, chemicals and chemical products, palm oil, machinery,
appliances and parts as well as processed food while imports comprise
crude petroleum, chemicals and chemical products, refined petroleum
products, palm oil and manufacture of metal.

Since its establishment in 1988, Matrade is the first institution
to win the prize under the category of trade promotion among OIC member

Apart from Matrade, only three other institutions have been
awarded the prize in the past — Malaysia’s Tabung Haji, Saudi Arabias
King Abdul Aziz Universitys Centre for Research in Islamic Economics
and Pakistans International Institute of Islamic Economics.

The prize was awarded at a special ceremony during the 24th
Ministerial Session of the Standing Committee for Economic and
Commercial Cooperation of the OIC.

Turkish President, Dr Abdullah Gul, presented the award.