Photo: International Halal Accreditation Forum (IHAF) secretary-general Mohammed Saleh Badri speaking at the Global Islamic Economy Summit (GIES) 2016 in October in Dubai, UAE.
JANUARY 22, 2018 | 6:40PM BRT | SAO PAULO
The secretary-general of the International Halal Accreditation Forum (IHAF), Mohamed Saleh Badri, said that he’s optimistic regarding the unification of halal certifications in Brazil, which will drive the country to exponentially increase its businesses with the Muslim world. Badri took part in a seminar on Islamic Economy held this Monday (22) morning by the Dubai Islamic Economy Development Centre (DIEDC), at the headquarters of the Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce in Sao Paulo.
For him, this is a necessary move throughout the world, since, currently, every country follows a different procedure, generating high costs and red tape. With the unification, all the process would be easier. The halal certification ensures that a certain product is allowed for the consumption of Muslims.
“We have been negotiating with Inmetro to be part of IHAF for two years; we will have meetings with them today (22) and tomorrow (23), and I’m very optimist that we will agree on a deal and that the government body will act strongly in the process of unification of certifications,” said Badri, mentioning the National Institute of Metrology, Quality and Technology (Inmetro).
According to him, Inmetro already owns a fine structure and would only need to adjust some procedures and hire qualified personnel to be able to accredit the certification organizations and unify the processes. This, according to Badri, will increase Brazil’s productivity, with a larger supply of products with cheaper prices.
Badri also said that the halal market is the fastest growing market in the world, totaling 1.7 billion people, and that it’s much more than only beef and poultry. “Now the people know that halal includes many sectors, such as pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, tourism, food products, organics, among others; As a matter of fact, organic halal is a growing market across the world and a great potential to Brazil,” added Badri.
According to IHAF’s estimates, the Muslim consumption of food products totaled USD 1.245 trillion in 2016, and it could, according to forecasts, reach USD 1.93 trillion in 2022, or 18.7% of the global market; in the pharmaceutical sector, Muslims spent USD 78 billion in 2015, and are expected to reach USD 132 billion in 2021; in the cosmetics sector, Muslims spent USD 57 billion in 2016, with an estimative to reach USD 82 billion in 2022; and with tourism, Muslims generated USD 169 billion in revenues in 2016, with a forecast to reach USD 283 billion in 2022.
Also took part in the panel the deputy general manager of Dubai Exports, Mohammed Al Kamali, the advisor of the Dubai Airport Freezone Authority (DAFZA), Abdur Ghulam Nabi, the Strategy and Planning deputy director-general of DIEDC, Saeed AL Marri, and the Arab Chamber’s CEO, Michel Alaby.
In the seminar, Al Kamali said that “Brazilian companies are very strong and feed the country, but are too timid regarding the global market, and we want to work together to change this.”
According to Alaby, “Brazilian companies are not used to search for foreign markets, but the Chamber have been performing a crucial role to bring closer and increase Brazil’s presence in the Arab market, with the participation in fairs, missions and many activities.”
The initial and closing presentation were done by the Arab Chamber’s president, Rubens Hannun. The president presented the Chamber’s actions for 2018 and said that the seminar was important to bring forward relevant discussions about the halal market.
“The Chamber’s role is that of mediation of these meetings (between IHAD and Inmetro, in this case) and of promotion of the halal market in Brazil; we will also open an office in Dubai to meet the needs of Brazilian companies in the UAE,” said Hannun.
*Translated by Sergio Kakitani
Copyright Brazil-Arab News Agency