‘Tap Into Halal Food Opportunities In Japan’

KUCHING: Local companies are urged to tap into halal food business opportunities in Japan during the coming Tokyo Olympic and Para-Olympic games in 2020.

In making the call, Assistant Minister of Entrepreneur and Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Development Datuk Mohd Naroden Majais said about 20 million tourists were expected to converge on Tokyo during the games, out of which more than a million would be Muslims.

The international events (Olympic and Para-Olympic games) in Tokyo will bring business opportunities, and it is hoped that local companies will tap such opportunities, particularly in ‘halal’ food industries, Naroden said yesterday.

He added that the Muslim population in Japan is about 150,000, of which 10 per cent are Japanese, creating demand for halal food.

Naroden, who is also Assistant Minister of E-Commerce, was speaking at the launch of a seminar on business opportunities in the halal food industry in Japan at Pullman Hotel here, organised by Malaysian External Trade Development Corporation (Matrade) and Japan External Trade Organisation (Jetro).

He also said Japan which has a population of about 127 million has great market potential, adding that trade between Malaysia and Japan from January until November last year reached RM126.67 billion, making it the country’s fourth biggest trading partner.

According to him, Japan is also the fourth biggest export and import market of the country, worth about RM68.48 billion and RM58.19 billion respectively.

The major export products to Japan are LNG, electrical and electronic products, chemicals and chemical products, wood products, and optical and scientific equipment, whereas the major imports are electrical and electronic products, machinery, appliances and parts, transport equipment, chemicals and chemical products, and iron and steel.

For Sarawak, from January to November last year, export to Japan amounted to RM24.79 billion, while import totalled to RM1.74 billion.

Sarawak’s major exports to Japan are LNG, wood products, iron and steel products, manufactured metal and wood products, while major imports are electrical and electronic products, machinery equipment and parts, and chemicals and chemical products.

Naroden also said some of Sarawak’s SMEs had penetrated Japan’s market for years, exporting frozen seafood, coconut nectar sugar as well as building materials and timber products

Source: The Borneo Post