Malaysia as Regional Halal Hub

Malaysia has called on global pharmaceutical producers to consider the country as the new regional hub to cater for the expanding global halal market.

In making the call, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said local industry players should also keep track of the latest know-how and technologies.

"Local industry players should double their efforts to position Malaysia at the forefront of the global healthcare and pharmaceutical industry," he said when opening the Halal Initiatives in Healthcare Industry Forum here today.

Also present was Halal Industry Development Corporation Chief Executive Officer Datuk Seri Jamil Bidin.

Ahmad Zahid said the global demand for halal pharmaceuticals is estimated to be worth RM 349 bil (USD 82 bil) but the current supply is estimated at only RM 8.5 mil (USD 2 mil).

 "There is certainly a huge opportunity here with a very promising future and this is where Malaysia holds some of the keys. As at August this year, there were already 110 Halal-certified pharmaceutical manufacturers in Malaysia including 24 export-ready manufacturers."

 "There are also opportunities to capitalise on Malaysia's diverse natural flora and fauna to develop resource-based bio-generic drugs. Malaysia is one of the world's 12 most bio-diverse countries and offers high potential for sourcing active compounds for healing and wellness products," he said.

On Halal tourism, Ahmad Zahid said Malaysia is the top destination and as a leader, the nation could certainly complement the wider medical tourism sector especially for Muslims worldwide.

Malaysia expects to see overall arrivals of more than 930,000 medical tourists with estimated revenue reaching RM1 billion annually, he said.

/Bernama 28-10-2015

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