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10 APRIL 2024

Thursday, February 22, 2024

Malaysia strengthens halal trade, investment with Japan

 

Deputy prime minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi witnessing the exchange of documents between Halal Development Corporation CEO Hairol Ariffein Sahari (left) and deputy managing director of Aeon Co (M) Bhd Tsugutoshi Seko. (Bernama pic)

OSAKA: Malaysia signed two memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with Japan today to strengthen halal trade, investment, and quality employment in the sector.

The cooperation also aims to enhance bilateral trade relations between the two countries in the halal industry.

The first MoU signing ceremony involved Halal Development Corporation (HDC) and Aeon Co (M) to promote Malaysian halal products in Japan.

Meanwhile, HDC has also collaborated with the Japan Halal Association (JHA) to enhance infrastructure and halal certification in Japan.

HDC was represented by CEO Hairol Ariffein Sahari, Aeon by deputy managing director Tsugutoshi Seko, and JHA by president Hind Hitomi Remon.

The signing ceremony here was witnessed by deputy prime minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi in his capacity as chairman of the Malaysia Halal Council, and HDC chairman Khairul Azwan Harun.

Through the collaboration with Aeon, the company will provide business guidance to Malaysian halal industry players wanting to penetrate the Japanese market, promote the HDC halal integrated platform, and organise presentation sessions to promote halal products.

HDC will also collaborate in providing halal training programmes for Japanese halal industry players.

The focus will be on human capital development and expertise sharing to streamline halal certification processes for restaurants in Japan.

HDC and JHA gave their commitment to promoting halal integrity aspects globally and empowering local businesses.

Earlier, Zahid, who is on a seven-day working visit to Japan, led a Malaysian delegation in meeting with leading Japanese halal industry players in the roundtable session, themed “Connecting halal ecosystems between Malaysia and Japan to enhance trade, investment, and quality employment”.

In his address, Zahid said the meeting laid a stronger foundation and marked a new chapter in empowering continuous cooperation between Malaysia and Japan, particularly towards enhancing international halal practices and standards.

He said the discussions also highlighted the importance of coordination between industry players from both countries to meet the increasing demand for halal goods and services worldwide, which now records a value of more than US$3 trillion.

Zahid said although the Muslim population in Japan is relatively small, the country’s halal market offers significant opportunities for growth and cooperation.

“For example, Malaysia’s exports reached RM59.5 billion in 2022, with halal exports to Japan totalling RM3.6 billion. These figures clearly reflect the tremendous potential to be explored between the two countries,” he said. - FMT

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