ASEAN Halal industries urged to step up their game

Syazwani Hj Rosli

The 16th ASEAN Working Group on Halal Food Meeting (16th AWGHF Meeting) was held through a virtual video conference at the Syariah Affairs Department in the capital yesterday.

Acting Director of Syariah Affairs Haji Abdul Rahman bin Matzin, who chaired the meeting, emphasised the importance for the Halal industry in ASEAN to speed up the global adoption of Fourth Industrial Revolution (IR 4.0), especially as the world is affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.

“Halal industries also need to play a bigger role to catch up, and utilise new technologies in the revolution, starting from manufacturing and throughout the supply chain. The revolution can possibly give numerous advantages towards the expansion of the industries,” he said.

The issues discussed included the progress in the implementation of the framework for ASEAN Cooperation on Halal Foods, Sub-Regional Halal Cooperation Programme under the Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore Islamic Religious Council (MABIMS); Brunei-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA); and Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand-Growth Triangle (IMT-GT); progress on the implementation of ASEAN Cooperation Action Plan on Halal Food for 2017-2020; and the establishment of the International Halal Authority (IHAB).

The meeting concluded with the summary of matters discussed earlier and Cambodia’s appointment as chair for the 17th AWGHF Meeting for 2021.

AWGHF was established to facilitate the uniformity of Halal standards especially in the ASEAN region in meeting the increasing demand for credible and secure Halal products and services to ensure that the Muslim community felt safe and confident in consuming Halal products.

Acting Director of Syariah Affairs Haji Abdul Rahman bin Matzin chairs the virtual video conference. PHOTO: MUIZ MATDANI