KUALA LUMPUR: All 272 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) participating in the Malaysia Halal Expo 2019 (MHE2019) must get ready for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, says Entrepreneur Development Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Redzuan Yusof.
“Tokyo 2020 serves as an opportunity for Malaysian SMEs to get a foothold into the Japanese market,” he said.
“A total of 45,000 athletes, delegates and others are expected to be at the events, where 40% of them will be consuming halal products.
“You need to provide for the halal kitchen at the Tokyo 2020. US$300mil is expected (from halal market),” he told a press conference after officiating the expo at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre here yesterday.
“Currently, 80% of the exhibitors are export ready while the balance has potential for the market.”
Themed “Malaysia to Japan for 2020 Olympics”, the MHE2019, is a key step forward towards implementing the Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) in Halal, which was signed by Malaysia and Japan on Nov 26 last year.
Mohd Redzuan said some Malaysian companies had been exporting to Japan, where the export volume to Japan for halal products was RM2.8bil in 2017.
“We can grow to RM3.7bil by next year. We should take advantage and use Tokyo 2020 to tell the world that we can supply such products. It is up to the SMEs to take up the 40% requirement,” he said.
He said Malaysia was the only country to have secured such a co-operation with Japan due to the high standard practised by the country regarding matters on halal.
However, Mohd Redzuan reminded the SMEs to be careful saying that, “the Japanese market is known for its exacting and high standards.”
“While the ministry and our agencies are ever ready to provide the opportunities and assistance that can empower our SMEs to achieve this target, in the end, it is up to you as the saying goes – to seal the deal.
“We wish to see more halal entrepreneurs who are not only able to produce products and services in the market, but are also able fill in the role of vendors and suppliers to major companies and multinational corporations,” he said.
He shared that the halal industry is estimated to be worth about US$6.4 trillion, with 20% average annual growth.
He also told the media that 309 exhibitors from various sectors focusing on halal included food and beverage, beauty products, logistics and pharmaceutical showed overwhelming participation by showcasing their products and services.
In his speech, Ambassador of Japan to Malaysia Dr Makio Miyagawa welcomed Malaysian companies to target the halal market in Japan.
The inaugural expo succeeded in generating RM40.9mil in potential sales through 32 business sessions.
These sesssions involved 27 Malaysian SMEs with 16 Japanese participating buyers and five Malaysian buyers, as of 4pm yesterday.
The three-day expo, which occupies Hall 1 to Hall 4, is open to all from 10am to 6pm. Admission is free.