Halal industry development will complement tourism sector

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MALACCA: The rapid development of the halal industry in Malaysia will not only open up various opportunities but also spur the nation’s tourism industry, says Deputy Tourism and Culture Minister Mas Ermieyati Samsudin.

She said many initiatives have been taken to ensure the tourism industry took advantage of the developments in the halal industry like the Halal Duty Free Outlet established by the Malaysia Inbound Tourism Association (MITA) that promotes the sale of products manufactured by halal cottage industries directly to tourists.

Malaysia has made its mark as an Islamic country with a highly reputable and certified halal industry and can supply halal products to the world’s Muslim population that stood at 2.08 billion in 2014.

The global food and non-halal industry is worth a whopping USD2.1 trillion, annually.

“This translates into tremendous opportunities for halal products produced by small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to make aggressive inroads into China and the Middle East,” she told reporters after officiating the ‘Go Halal Carnival! Go Domestic!’ here last night.

Mas Ermieyati said strategic planning should be in place to ensure products manufactured by SMEs were enjoyed in target markets.

One such initiative that deserved recognition was the effort undertaken by MITA and Halal Retail Asia, which entered into a bilateral Memorandum of Understanding with MAHIEZ Alliance Group from China, to market about 500 SME products to China and the Middle East.

In 2015, the tourism sector raked in RM67.1 billion in revenue. Come 2020, it is envisaged that Malaysia will host 36 million tourist arrivals and reap RM168 billion in tourist dollars,” she said.