Halal exports to reach RM45b this year

On emerging halal markets, demand from India alone increased by 11% last year, surpassing growths of exports to other countries

By SHAHEERA AZNAM SHAH / Pic By ISMAIL CHE RUS

Increasing demand and new markets should drive exports of Malaysia’s halal products to reach RM45 billion this year, a double-digit growth from the RM40 billion registered last year.

Halal Industry Development Corp (HDC) VP (industry development) Hanisofian Alias said the export of halal products this year is expected to grow beyond the traditional 5% growth target set every year.

“On an annual basis, we usually target at least 5% growth, but the commodity prices are not something that we can control.

“We will have to see the first-quarter result, but for now, we think the export value could reach RM45 billion if we could enhance the contribution from the small and medium enterprises (SMEs),” he told reporters after the soft launch of the World Halal Conference 2019 last Friday.

On emerging halal markets, Hanisofian said demand from India alone has increased by 11% last year, surpassing growths of exports to other countries.

“India has been loyal in importing our halal products. Although the total export value is not significant, the trend is there.

“Their importers have started to realise the potential of this industry, in fact, they are starting to do halal events in India,” he said.

He pointed out that from the 1,700 local halal products’ exporters, some 20% are SMEs.

Malaysia’s halal exports declined by RM3.4 billion to RM40 billion last year, some 8% lower from the RM43.4 billion registered in 2017, impacted by lower commodity prices.

“The export performance of last year was not the industry’s maiden declining growth. It was also a significant loss, mainly due to the challenging time in the palm oil industry, including the lower palm oil derivatives.

“Lower crude palm oil prices in 2018, including stiff competition with other vegetable oils, had indirectly affected the local halal products, particularly the oleochemical-based products,” he said.

Themed “Fostering a Robust Halal Economy: Global Integration and Ethical Practice”, the 11th edition of the World Halal Conference will be held on April 3-4, 2019, at the Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre, Kuala Lumpur.