More than 80% of SMEs certified halal, says Na’im

Religious Affairs Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Mohd Na’im Mokhtar says Bumiputera enterprises make up 39.53% of the total number of halal certificate holders in the country. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, September 18, 2023.

MORE than 80% or 7,306 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) hold Malaysia’s halal verification certificate, Religious Affairs Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Mohd Na’im Mokhtar said.

Winding up the debate for his portfolio on the 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP) mid-term review at Dewan Rakyat today, he said the total number of halal certificate holders for all industry categories was 8,272 companies.

Out of that, 3,270 or 39.53%, are Bumiputera companies, he added.

“From several cabinet meetings and inter-ministerial meetings that have been held, agreements and resolutions have been reached for the Halal Development Corporation to play an important role in industry training and guidance to ensure that businesses are ready to apply for the halal verification certificate.

“In an effort to improve the governance of the SME industry, the Malaysian Islamic Development Department (Jakim) always engages with entrepreneur guidance agencies under the ministry to facilitate the aspects of halal certification standards and procedures,” he said.

Na’im said Jakim also collaborates with experts from public and private institutes, including Universiti Putra Malaysia’s Halal Products Research Institute, to strengthen the halal ecosystem in the country and abroad.

Earlier, Noraini Ahmad (Parit Sulong-BN), when debating the 12MP mid-term view, suggested that the government improve governance for the halal industry, especially the SME group, in an effort to add value to the sector.

On the proposal to create a specific act to regulate the halal industry, Na’im said for now laws such as the Trade Description Act 2011 (Act 730), Trade Descriptions (Certification and Marking of Halal) Order 2011 and Trade Descriptions (Definition of Halal) Order 2011 as well as enactments in the states are still relevant and meet current industry needs and requirements. – Bernama, September 18, 2023.

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