The Halal Journal - July/Aug 2010

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business f lifestyle f trends


35 :: July+August 2010





IS GENETICALLY MODIFIED FOOD HALAL? Serious concerns raised by scientists & scholars THE SCOPE OF PRODUCTS IN INDIA Know the consumers, understand the market & supply to their demands CAN WE BE HALAL IN PARTS? Wholesome Halal concept = Walk the talk, talk the walk


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HALAL PRODUCTS AND SERVICES – GOING MAINSTREAM Be in the know. Deliberate issues and understand market trends. Discover a multi-billion consumer segment that is creating a worldwide demand in an industry that includes: • Food • Pharmaceuticals • Logistics • Certification • Travel • Retail

10 & 11 November 2010 | 3 & 4 Zulhijah 1431H EARLS COURT EXHIBITION CENTRE, LONDON The World Halal Forum is the undisputed premier global event bringing together business leaders and stakeholders from across the world under one roof to discuss, consolidate and drive the trillion-dollar Halal industry. World Halal Forum Europe provides a regional focus converging on the challenges and opportunities specifically in that part of the world and how this AFFECTS the global value chain. World Halal Forum is acknowledged by the OIC

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contents | July+August 2010

©2009 KasehDia Sdn. Bhd. All Rights Reserved

Disclaimer :  While all care is taken, the publisher accepts no responsibility for the information contained herein which is believed to be reliable. The publisher/editor takes no responsibility for opinions expressed or implied as they are the writers’ own and do not necessarily reflect that of the publisher or editor who make no warranties governing material, including advertising or features contained within this publication. This publication may not in whole or part, be copied, reproduced or translated without prior written permission of the publisher.


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c ov e r s t o ry


A special report on the 5th World Halal Forum

32} IS GENETICALLY MODIFIED FOOD HALAL? Serious concerns raised by scientists & scholars

48} FASTRACK ASIA A talk with OIC International Business Centre

38} THE SCOPE OF PRODUCTS IN INDIA Know the consumers, understand the market & supply to their demands

50} FASTRACK ASIA Accommodating Muslims in Hong Kong

42} CAN WE BE HALAL IN PARTS? Wholesome Halal concept = Walk the talk, talk the walk


46} EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH MATRADE Wan Norma – Tirelessly promoting Halal for Malaysia

52} FASTRACK ASIA HDC launched guide book for producers & iPhone Apps 58} ISLAMIC FINANCE A role for sports in Islamic Finance?

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Ed’s Note The Malaysian Prime Minister,

Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Abdul Razak, voiced out his take on Halal to over 900 participants including 149 media representatives at the

I want Halal to be cool. I want nonMuslims girls to go, “Oh my God, that’s amazing! What is that product? I want it!” … So I wanted to go the reverse and the other way and the only way to do that is to make great quality products, beautiful packaging and put them in the right stores. Layla Mandi founder and CEO of OnePure Halal Beauty

Regulars 08} Global News  A brief insight into events currently shaping the Halal industry around the globe + Calendar of Events 20} IHI ALLIANCE NEWS Updates on activities of the International Halal Integrity (IHI) Alliance 54} Country in Focus Japan: An Absolute Wonderland

recently concluded World Halal Forum (WHF) 2010. This issue covers Najib and outlines his view on the all encompassing nature of Halal as a source for economic growth. Get a snippet of the Halal Economy and a special report on the fifth WHF on p24. In one of our features, Dr. Mahvash Hussain-Gambles highlights concerns on genetic modification in food and deliberates on whether or not it should be Halal on p32. Entering a new market requires market intelligence for a higher success. You get to know the needs of consumers, understand market requirements, and therefore supply to the market accordingly. Read on the growing Indian Halal market on p38. Many things are easier said than done, and it is no different when it comes to applying a wholesome Halal concept in your business and lifestyle. But this is no excuse; you walk the talk and talk the walk. Explore and ponder for a while by reading “Can we be Halal in parts?” on p42. The World Cup is over, but in the spirit of sports, our Islamic Finance feature espouses the possibilities of sports playing a role in this sector. Interested? Find out on p58. Our Living section features recommended entertainment and people in the art scene. In anticipation of the holy month of Ramadhan, we reveal a list of medical benefits of fasting by endocrinologist, Dr. S.M. Bakir, who has written countless research papers on this topic (p63). Do drop us your comments to, and in advance, Ramadhan Mubarak to all of our readers. Enjoy reading our latest THJ offerings.

The Halal Journal Team

Living 63} FEATURE COVER Fasting in Ramadhan – A Medical Perspective 66} journey Simply hearty: A journey through Cambodian cuisine 68} Browsing A Young Muslim’s Guide to the Modern World in Books; Khalil Ismail in Music; Tarek Atrissi in Artists; Sumber Ayu Feminine Wash in Products; and Photography and Photojournalism 72} parting words Layla Mandi, CEO & Founder, OnePure Halal Beauty, Dubai, UAE

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the Heart of T he Halal Jour nal

Halal refers to that which the Creator has made lawful. Its opposite Haram, refers to what is forbidden. The realm of Halal extends beyond the obvious references to food and touches on all matters relating to human life. In the commercial arena, all goods and services, market transactions, currencies and other activities come under the judgments of Halal and Haram. These parameters include protecting the environment, humane treatment for animals, ethical investments, the intrinsic value of currencies, and fairness in all commercial transactions. The global Halal market is now a new economic sector, and we believe it will be one of the great market forces in the coming decades.

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EDITORIAL EDITOR Hajjah Jumaatun Azmi senior WRITER Ruzanna Muhammad WRITER Zaahira Muhammad

“...the w first se orld’s Halal froies of restaur od gui ant The Asdes.” i

RESEARCHERs Mohd Amri Sofi Dayana Nordin Suraiya Ilyas Contributing Writers Dr. S.M. Bakir Ruzaimi Sany Rushdi Siddiqui Shafeeq ur Rahman Dr. Mahvash Hussain-Gambles

Street an Wall Journa l

GRAPHICS & DESIGN Emanuelle Negroponte SALES & DISTRIBUTION Francisca Shaik

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Over 130 reviews of restaurants, cafes, food courts, bakeries and confectioners Descriptive photographs Index and icons to find the exact place you want Maps for reference

Partner Events WHF MIHAS WHF Europe World of Halal 2010 Global Halal Expo Pakistan 2010 Halal & Healthy Products Fair 2010 Global Halal Congress Pakistan 2010 PERMISSION & REPRINTS The Halal Journal is written and published bimonthly for a worldwide audience. Materials in The Halal Journal may not be reproduced in any form without prior written permission of the publisher. Submitted articles will be published at editors’ discretion. We are unable to publish all articles submitted due to sheer volume received. SUBSCRIPTION & CIRCULATION For subscription and circulation enquiries, address changes and request for back copies, please call +6 03 6203 1025 or fax +6 03 6203 4072 or email us at Kindly ensure address changes are notified immediately to avoid delays in receiving your copy of The Halal Journal. The Halal Journal is a member of the Magazine Publishers Association, and is currently in the process of applying for membership of ABC.

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Compiled by Zaahira Muhammad

Honjo Shoku-niku learned of Halal preparation methods about 16 years ago when it granted a request from Muslim residents in neighbouring Gunma Prefecture to use its facilities. In 2008, the United Arab Emirates certified the Shoku-niku Centre as a location where Halal foods could be produced – the first such meatprocessing facility in Japan.


FIRST FACILITY CAPABLE OF PRODUCING HALAL MEATS IN JAPAN BEGINS OPERATION The first facility in Japan capable of producing meats to Islamic “Halal” standards has begun operation. Situated in Honjo, Saitama Prefecture, the Honjo Shoku-niku Centre can butcher meat to Halal standards quickly and safely thanks to special Halal butchering machinery. The centre is the only facility in Japan to have installed such specialised machinery. The centre hopes to increase exports of Japanese beef to Islamic countries. Honjo Shoku-niku learned of Halal preparation methods about 16 years ago when it granted a request from Muslim residents in neighbouring Gunma Prefecture to use its facilities. In 2008, the United Arab Emirates certified the Shokuniku Centre as a location where Halal foods could be produced – the first such meat-processing facility in Japan. The specialised machinery, which is widely used in Europe, was introduced as a condition for receiving the authorisation. In Islam, there are many strict guidelines about how to process beef, including particular prayers that should be recited during slaughter. Only meat that has been prepared this way is Halal and suitable for consumption by Muslims. |SOURCE: THE MAINICHI DAILY NEWS, 17 APRIL 2010 The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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BIG MACS SET TO GO HALAL IN PRESTON Preston’s Muslim population will be able to dig into Big Macs from June when Preston McDonald’s goes Halal. The 24-hour store, on the corner of Bell St. and St. Georges Rd., has already started building works required to sell Halal alongside non-Halal food. McDonald’s spokeswoman, Bronwyn Stubbs, said McDonald’s had worked closely with the Halal Certification Authority for accreditation for most of the restaurant’s products including: the Big Mac, cheeseburger and most other burgers, Chicken McNuggets and the McChicken, the Fillet of Fish and fries. Preston residents who talked to the Leader were generally positive about the move, but one Muslim resident raised concerns about having both Halal and nonHalal food in the same kitchen. Abdul Aziz Spinghar of Fawkner said he was concerned about crosscontamination. Ms. Stubbs said Muslims should not be concerned as there would be special equipment and strict enforcement of Halal guidelines. Food on the grills and in storage will be completely separated. Staff will also receive extensive training. Other residents did not share Mr. Aziz’s concerns. Harika Reddy and Rupesh Gujrathi of Reservoir said they would eat at McDonald’s regularly because they tasted Halal McDonald’s in Malaysia and Singapore and the Halal meat is tastier. Ms. Stubbs said the rebuild may force the restaurant to close for a week or two just before re-opening. |SOURCE: PRESTON LEADER, 3 MARCH 2010


SITI LAUNCHES SKINCARE AND MAKE-UP LINE Singer, Datuk Siti Nurhaliza, has launched a skincare and make-up line called SimplySiti. The 31-year-old pop darling, noted not only for her illustrious singing career but also her sweet looks, opened the event with a song entitled Rahsiaku Milikmu (My Secret Is Yours), the special theme

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song behind her product line. Siti wrote the lyrics herself. She said the song served as the inspiration for her beauty brand. SimplySiti, which features both skincare and cosmetic products, are made in South Korea. The songstress was also grateful for the Halal certification her line has obtained from the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM). SimplySiti has three ranges – brightening, anti-ageing and acne-prone skin. All three consist of the star product, the Simply 5 cream that moisturises, treats, protects and acts as a make-up base and foundation. The affordable range is now available at all Watson’s stores nationwide. Siti is also in talks with Jusco to carry the products. In June, she will be launching a special concept kiosk at JB Central complex in Johor Bahru. Plans are afoot to take SimplySiti international. |SOURCE: THE STAR ONLINE, 31 MARCH 2010


BAN ON ‘PRIVATISED’ HALAL LOGOS A CORRECT DECISION – JAMIL The Selangor Islamic Council’s (MAIS) decision banning Halal logos issued by private companies is correct and to ensure that they adhere to Islamic law. Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom, said this was because the issuance of Halal logos by the companies had raised doubts among Muslims. “Companies that did not follow procedures fixed by the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM) and state Islamic councils will encourage others to do the same,” he said at the fifth convocation of Kolej Islam Antarabangsa, Gombak. Jamil was commenting on the MAIS decision to ban Halal logos issued by six companies to restaurants, cafés, hotels and food courts in Selangor. The six companies are Bahtera Lagenda Sdn Bhd, Islamic Food and Research Council (IFRC), SAS-H Consultancy, Perak Religious Officers Association, Halal Food Council S.E.A, and IFANCA International. |SOURCE: BERNAMA, 6 MARCH 2010

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“I am pleased that as a school with a high proportion of Muslim children, our self-managed kitchen has been recognised as meeting the standards of the Halal Monitoring Committee for purchase, storage and preparation of our meals.” UNITED KINGDOM

EAST LANCASHIRE PRIMARY SCHOOL BECOMES FIRST CREDITED BY HALAL ORGANISATION An East Lancashire primary school has become the first in the UK to be credited by the Halal Monitoring Committee. Daisyfield Primary School, Blackburn is also the first non-Muslim school to become certified by the committee; the only other in the area is Tauheedul Islam Girls’ High School. Many schools in East Lancashire serve Halal meat and poultry, which involves slaughtering animals in a specific way for Muslims, but they are only credited by the less strict Halal Food Authority. The Halal Monitoring Committee said it inspects poultry and meat from the source to its slaughter as well as packaging and delivery. Peter Fenton, head teacher of the Clinton Street School, said: “I am pleased that as a school with a high proportion of Muslim children, our self-managed kitchen has been recognised as meeting the standards of the Halal Monitoring Committee for purchase, storage and preparation of our meals. This has already been well received by the whole of the school community.” Moulana Hanif, Halal Monitoring Committee’s local area representative, said: “We have no words to express our joy at the news that Daisyfield Primary The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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School has become the first Primary School in the country to be certified by the Halal Monitoring Committee.” |SOURCE: THIS IS LANCASHIRE, 8 MARCH 2010


MCDONALD’S REJECTS PUSH TO HAVE MORE HALALSERVING OUTLETS McDonald’s has rejected a push to have more Halal-serving outlets despite pressure on the fast-food giant. A Victorian burger fan, Amin Assafiri, launched the Facebook campaign in frustration at having to drive eight kilometres north to the closest Halal McDonald’s. Amin lives to the north of Melbourne, in Fawkner, with the nearest Halal McDonald’s in Roxburgh Park. His Facebook page “Make Fawkner McDonald’s Halal!” has attracted 341 members – not enough to sway the burger chain’s management. “We can only accommodate the market so much,” McDonald’s spokeswoman Kristy Chong said. “It is a considerable cost to go Halal. There are already two Halal McDonald’s in Melbourne.” Amin said at least 1,000 Muslims living in Fawkner made special trips to Victoria’s Halal McDonald’s in Roxburgh Park and Brunswick East. The third Victorian Halal McDonald’s will open in a renovated Preston McDonald’s in June. |SOURCE: HERALD SUN, 7 MARCH 2010


BIRMINGHAM MOSQUES COME OUT AGAINST HALAL MACHINE SLAUGHTERING Mosques in Birmingham have called for consumers and processors to be made more aware of machineslaughtering used in Halal meat production. Umbrella organisation, the Birmingham Council of Mosques, has released an open letter signed by Dr. N. Naseem on 3 March, which said: “Our collective view is that we do not accept machine-slaughter as a Halal (lawful) method to produce Halal meat.” Ruksana Shain, representing the Birmingham Council of Mosques, added that the letter was a way of making a stance to the Muslim Community to make them aware of machine-slaughtering in Halal and

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also communicating this to the meat industry and the Food Standards Agency. The Council was looking to lobby the government over the issue to get machine slaughtering off the Halal plate. Ruksana added that many Halal certification bodies that accept machine slaughter were not wholly representative of the Muslim Community and were self-certificating. Eblex Halal Steering Group member Naved Syed said: “These are the views the Malaysian Standard, MS 1500, has raised that removed machine-slaughter from Halal killing.” |SOURCE: MEATINFO.CO.UK, 9 MARCH 2010

“Our collective view is that we do not accept machine-slaughter as a Halal (lawful) method to produce Halal meat.”


DON’T WAIT FOR HALAL ACT ENFORCEMENT TO GET HALAL CERTIFICATES, COMPANIES TOLD Companies need not wait for the proposed Halal Act to take effect before getting Halal certificates, says Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom. “When the people feel it was a must to get Halal products, it would be an important requirement for companies to have Halal certificates,” he said. He added that efforts by companies to obtain Halal certificates should be expedited before the Halal Act is enforced in the country. The Government is to introduce the Halal Act next year which, among others, only recognises Halal certificates and logos issued by the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM). The Halal Act Bill is to be tabled in Parliament in June. Citing Takaful Insurance as an example, Jamil Khir said when the Shariah-compliant Islamic insurance scheme yielded good returns, the people ‘raced’ to buy the insurance policy even though there was no compulsion to buy it. Jamil Khir said the initiative by the Jaya Jusco Supermarket to obtain Halal certification and recognition should be emulated by other companies as it would provide the business impact to both Muslim and non-Muslim shoppers. “Their confidence in products stems on whether they are Halal and manufactured in hygienic conditions,” he added. |SOURCE: BERNAMA, 9 MARCH 2010


NON-ALCOHOL DRINKS SHOULD GET HALAL CERTIFICATION: ULEMA COUNCIL The Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) said that nonalcoholic drinks were not necessarily Halal, and still needed MUI Halal certification. Executive director of the Cosmetics and Drugs Monitoring Institution at MUI,

Lukmanul Hakim, mentioned that non-alcoholic drinks sometimes contain ingredients like taurine, pepsin, gelatine, active carbon or coating. He said taurine, often found in energy drinks, was mostly derived from pig gall. Other additives such as pepsin, gelatine, clarifiers and stabilisers – to make drinks look clear – and cloudifiers to make juice look cloudy, came from animals. Active carbon and flavours for fruity aromas also came from animals. Ingredients from pigs were the most popular among producers because pigs breed fast, and are easily available and low-cost. Pigs have genetic structure closest to human beings. The chromosome structure between pigs and humans is distinguished only by one strip. Therefore, he said, drinks like energy drinks, tea, packaged coffee drinks, soft drinks and packaged juice, have to get Halal certification. In January, MUI reported that from around 30,000 products circulating in the country, 80 per cent had no Halal certification. With the free trade agreements, the country would see an increase in imported products, thus, posing a challenge to the MUI to improve its Halal certification process, as requested by producers and importers. The Indonesian Association of Halal Product Manufacturers (APPHI) has complained, saying that many foreign producers were unhappy about MUI’s policy of refusing to recognise Halal certification obtained in other countries. APPHI also said that MUI and producers should improve the trust between them because in the past MUI tended to find fault with what the producers were doing. |SOURCE: THE JAKARTA POST, 10 MARCH 2010


ENTREPRENEURS FROM NCER SHOULD PARTICIPATE IN TRADE MISSIONS OVERSEAS Entrepreneurs operating in the Northern Corridor Economic Region (NCER) should be allowed to participate in trade missions overseas. In making the call,

Chairman of the NCER Entrepreneurs Club, Dr. Ammar Hassan, said there were many successful entrepreneurs in Perlis but they were overlooked when trade missions are mounted overseas. These entrepreneurs were still operating in the district when they should be exploring the ASEAN and the Middle Eastern markets where opportunities abound. They should be establishing trade ties over there. Ammar said with the government developing a Halal hub in Padang Besar, a Malaysia-Thailand border town, there was a compelling reason for local businessmen from the state to strike bilateral ties with their counterparts in these countries. He added the club would soon conduct a Malaysia-Saudi Arabia women entrepreneur’s seminar to promote two-way bilateral trade. |SOURCE: BERNAMA, 11 MARCH 2010


MITI TO HELP CAPTURE MIDDLE EAST SMIS HALAL FOOD PRODUCT MARKET The Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) will take efforts to assist local small- and mediumsized industries (SMIs) to capture the exported SMI Halal food product market of the Middle East. Its Deputy Minister, Datuk Mukhriz Tun Mahathir, said while local SMI Halal products have already penetrated the market and have been accepted by the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC) member countries, they have not been able to meet the huge demand. At least they require one container (of products) for each delivery. The failure to deliver instead has seen Thailand in the picture as it has many SMIs who have successfully adopted the requirements needed to supply the Halal products in demand, he said. The demand (for food products) includes that needed by pilgrims performing their Hajj at Mecca and Madinah during the Hajj season. He said Malaysia had a greater potential to market the products considering that more than 25,000 Muslims in the country performed their Hajj every year. The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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Expressing disappointment that the local SMIs could not meet the demand, he said his ministry will be taking measures to encourage SMIs to increase their production capacity as well as look into quality and more attractive packaging in order to compete in the market. |SOURCE: BERNAMA, 11 MARCH 2010


HALAL POULTRY EXPORTS INCREASE According to figures disclosed today by the Brazilian Poultry Exporters Association (ABEF), exports to the region generated USD309.1 million, growth of 44.3 per cent over January and February last year. Shipments to the region totalled 197,600 tonnes, growth of 12.3 per cent in the same comparison, according to ABEF. The Middle East is the main foreign market for Brazilian chicken. In all, foreign sales of chicken generated USD884.9 million, growth of 12.2 per cent over the first half in 2009. Shipments totalled 515,000 tonnes, a reduction of 4.13 per cent over January and February last year. In a press statement disclosed by the ABEF, the organisation’s president, Francisco Turra, stated that “the expansion in revenue is a good result for the sector this year, as there was a 16 per cent reduction in 2009”. He pointed out, however, that “there is still not total international financial stability.” There was also growth in sales to Asia and Africa. To all other regions, there was a reduction in the volume shipped. |SOURCE: MEAT TRADE NEWS DAILY, 16 MARCH 2010


PERKIM URGED TO ASSIST SELANGOR GOVERNMENT IN MONITORING USE OF HALAL LOGOS The Selangor government wants the assistance of PERKIM (Muslim Welfare Organization Malaysia) to monitor use of Halal logos in the state to prevent any misuse. Selangor Menteri Besar, Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim, said, this was because Halal matters were very sensitive to Muslims. He told this to reporters after opening Selangor PERKIM’s 21st annual general meeting. On another matter, Khalid said claims by Works Minister, Datuk Shaziman Abu Mansor, that the Selangor government did not provide enough allocations to maintain roads in the state were not true. Shaziman was reported to have said that the Public Works Department only received a RM45 million allocation for the purpose and that it was pittance compared to the allocation given by the federal government. |SOURCE: BERNAMA, 20 MARCH 2010


HALALTRIP.COM LAUNCHES ISLAMIC TRAVEL GUIDE, an online directory of worldwide Muslimfriendly hotels, has just been launched to the public. Users can easily rate businesses, helping to create the most transparent travel source for Muslims. Each hotel profile includes information whether alcohol and Halal food is served, and if women-only facilities, like pools The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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The Middle East is the main foreign market for Brazilian chicken. In all, foreign sales of chicken generated USD884.9 million, growth of 12.2 per cent over the first half in 2009. and other wellness activities, and prayer facilities are offered. “We want to be the leading online source for Muslims planning their holidays or religious trips. Halaltrip is a strongly Islamicbased free web service providing honestly researched information on Halal travelling. Ratings will be examined daily, based on a fair and faithfully set of criteria. This is an underestimated market as we are reaching out to more than one billion people”, says Founder Karim Saad. Currently, halaltrip is only available in English but will be multi-lingual within the upcoming weeks. “Internationalisation is our next big goal! As soon as possible, we are going to launch an Arabic and a Turkish version”, forecasts Saad. Despite the worldwide economic crisis, the so-called “Halal tourism” is still on the rise. The World Travel Market Report (WTM) called this special segment of travelling an “untapped field not only for the Middle and Far East but also for Western Europe”. “Global Players like TripAdvisor, YahooTravel and HolidayCheck are just the peak of a huge variety of rating sites. Despite that, there is still a ‘niche’, targeting a Muslim audience, who is keen on travelling within a Halal environment. That’s what halaltrip is for”, hopes Saad, for a great future of his project. |SOURCE: ZAWYA, 25 MARCH 2010


BOOST FOR HALAL INDUSTRY A team of researchers at Universiti

Sains Malaysia (USM) has discovered a method of differentiating chicken from pork in food products by using a sugar mixture called ribose. Through the method, which uses the Maillard reaction approach, the two meats will change into a different colour as a result of their reaction to the sugar compound. The Maillard reaction is named after French scientist Louis Camille Maillard, who discovered the reactions of amino acids and carbohydrates in 1912. USM head of research Prof. Azhar Mat Esa said the test was simple and could be done at home with the right equipment. All you need to do is to take a piece of meat and mix it with the sugar compound and then heat the meat to a certain temperature for the colour change. Prof. Azhar, who is also the dean of USM’s School of Graduate Studies and Research, said that by using a device called spectrophotometer, the colour achieved would indicate whether the meat was chicken or pork. Others in the research team were Dr. Abbas F.M. Alkarkhi and Tan Thuan Chew. Using the test, the public, particularly Muslim consumers, need not worry whether the meat they will be eating is really chicken as the test result will be known in less than two hours. Prof. Azhar said the new discovery, which would be filed for patent application, would also be useful to differentiate gelatine derived from cows and that derived from pigs. Prof. Azhar mentioned that it can be applied in the food industry like the Halal frozen meat sector. He also added that a spectrophotometer cost about RM25,000 and a bottle of ribose (4gm), RM15. |SOURCE: THE STAR ONLINE, 4 APRIL 2010


EMPOWERING JAKIM TO PREVENT ABUSE OF HALAL LOGO The law will be amended to provide enforcement officers from the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM) powers to prevent the abuse of the Halal logo by commercial enterprises. Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department,

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Senator Datuk Dr. Mashitah Ibrahim, said previously, JAKIM officers could only accompany enforcement officers from the Domestic Trade and Consumerism Ministry to conduct raids on companies suspected to have misused the logo. “Amendments will be made to the Trade Descriptions Act to appoint JAKIM as a competent authority on issues related to Halal certification. It means that JAKIM will be empowered to carry out inspections and seizures of evidence during enforcement operations,” she told Datuk Taib Azzamuddin Mohd Taib (PAS - Baling). Dr Mashitah also said JAKIM had taken over the management of Halal certification from the Halal Industry Development Corporation (HDC) since 1 August last year. |SOURCE: THE STAR ONLINE, 7 APRIL 2010


PROGRAMME PROVIDES HALAL MEALS FOR MICHIGAN’S ELDERS Muslim elders in the state of Michigan can now get free Halal meals delivered to their doorstep thanks to the first of its kind federally-funded programme that sponsors say could prove popular in many areas across the country. “It was a community initiative that we were trying to do for five years now,” said Amne Talab, social services director at the Arab Community Centre for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS) in Dearborn. “We felt the Muslim seniors are not benefiting from the social services they can receive.” The “Halal Meals on Wheels” programme is a joint effort between ACCESS and Senior Alliance Area Agency on Aging 1-C, two non-profit organisations. It started last month with the aim of helping elderly Muslims incapable of preparing their own food receive home-delivered Halal meals. Talab, who is also the state’s Commissioner on Services to the Aging, started to work on having the funding necessary for the programme from the southern and western areas of Wayne County. Senior Alliance identified and secured federal

funding for the project through a state agency. It took three years to get the service off the ground. The meals are delivered only to eligible people in southern and western Wayne County. “There is a whole set of requirements that must qualify those who want to benefit from the programme,” Talab said, adding that recipients must be at least 60, confined to their homes and unable to make their own meals. “Recipients are encouraged to make a donation, but they do not have to pay for the meals,” she said. |SOURCE: ISLAMONLINE.NET, 25 MARCH 2010


GULFOOD SHOW HIGHLIGHTS EXPORT OPPORTUNITIES FOR HALAL MEAT Around 400 international sheep meat buyers sampled quality Halal lamb at the Gulfood Show in Dubai thanks to EBLEX. EBLEX took a stand at this major show to help put foreign buyers in touch with domestic producers, particularly of Halal sheep meat for the Muslim consumer. EBLEX Export manager, Jean-Pierre Garnier, said the well-attended event was an excellent opportunity to showcase quality sheep meat and evaluate the potential in the Gulf for Quality Standard premium lamb based on superior freshness and eating quality. A Halal steering group established by EBLEX has just commissioned a comprehensive research project to look at the Halal market and Muslim consumer trends. |SOURCE: MEAT TRADE NEWS DAILY, 3 MARCH 2010

New Zealand is stepping into an arena it has previously tried to avoid, the certification of New Zealand exports as “Halal” in terms of Islamic religious rules. NEW ZEALAND

NZ GOVT PLANNING HALAL CERTIFICATION The New Zealand government has issued a new framework for Halal certification, after a series of disagreements in Malaysian and Indonesian meat markets. According to NZPA, New Zealand was asking Islamic countries to tell it what they wanted certified, and was working to ensure certifiers worked to those requirements. New Zealand is stepping into an arena it has previously tried to avoid, the certification of New Zealand exports as “Halal” in terms of Islamic religious rules. Previously Government regulators have kept Halal certification at arm’s length, relying on two commercial agencies which have been handling most of the certification of meat and milk products. However, NZPA says the

30th June – 4th July 2010 World of Halal 2010 IMPACT Exhibition Center Bangkok, Thailand Koelnmesse Pte Ltd Tel: +65 6500 6712 Fax: +65 6294 8403 Email: Website: 1st – 3rd July 2010 BEAUTYEXPO UZBEKISTAN Uzexpocentre Tashkent, Uzbekistan TNT Productions, Inc. Tel: +1 703 406 0010 Fax: +1 703 406 8543 Email: Web: 8 – 10th July 2010 INDO LIVESTOCK EXPO & FORUM Jakarta Convention Centre Jakarta, Indonesia PT. Napindo Media Ashatama Tel: +62 21 865 0962 Fax: +62 21 865 0963 Email: Web: 9 – 11th July 2010 Global Halal Expo Pakistan 2010 Karachi Expo Centre Karachi, Pakistan Global Exhibitions & Marketing Tel: +92 21 3531 0301 Fax: +92 21 3531 0030 Email: Website: 10 – 11th July 2010 Global Halal Congress Pakistan 2010 Karachi Expo Centre Karachi, Pakistan Global Exhibitions & Marketing Tel: +92 21 3531 0301 Fax: +92 21 3531 0030 Email: Website: 14 – 16th July 2010 PROPAK CHINA Shanghai New International Expo Centre (SNIEC) Pudong, Shanghai, China China International Exhibitions Ltd. Tel: +86 21 6209 5209 Fax: +86 21 6209 5210 Email: Web: 22nd – 24th July 2010 11th Malaysia International Food & Beverage Trade Fair (MIFB) Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC) Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Expomal International Sdn Bhd Tel: +603 8024 6500 Fax: +603 8024 8740 Email: Web: 23rd – 25th July 2010 INDONESIA HALAL EXPO Jakarta Convention Center Jakarta, Indonesia PT. Puteri Cahaya Kharisma (Performax) Tel: +62 21 782 0523 Fax: +62 21 782 0901 Email: Web: www.

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problems in South East Asia last year, particularly with the world’s most populous Islamic country, Indonesia, led the Government to announce that organisations which certify Halal meat for export will be subject to government oversight “to standardise Halal certification and improve assurances to our trading partners.” Transitional cover for Halal organisations is available up to 1 October, and bodies have up to 1 May to apply to be listed as an approved Halal organisation. |SOURCE: MEAT INTERNATIONAL, 2 APRIL 2010


B264 MILLION COMMITTED TO PROMOTE HALAL FOOD A total of 264 million baht from the Thai Khem Khaeng economic stimulus programme will be earmarked to develop nine Halal food projects as part of the country’s Halal food development plan. Under the five-year plan starting this year, the government plans to spend up to five billion baht to market Thai Halal food to international Muslim consumers. Muslims comprise more than a quarter of the world’s population, approximately 1.8 billion people, representing a lucrative export opportunity for Thailand. The plan calls for the government to raise shipments of Halal food by at least 10 per cent a year between 2010 and 2014. Target products include vegetables, fruit, fishery and livestock products, and services such as tourism and health. The strategy also includes plans to encourage hotel entrepreneurs and restaurant operators to improve their services to meet the varying demands of Muslim visitors. Development is mainly focused on the five southernmost provinces – Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat, Satun and Songkhla – to become production bases for Halal products. Tharadol Piempongsan, Deputy Secretary to the Prime Minister, said the nine projects are ready to get underway. Those projects include a plan to upgrade slaughterhouses and beef processing, and to reorganise the Halal World Congress The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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after it was delayed from 19-24 March this year, due mainly to political unrest. He said Thailand needs to upgrade its Halal standards, as trade partners are still less confident in Thai Halal food, especially for livestock products such as chicken and beef. Halal exports fetched the country 5.19 billion baht in 2008, a rise of 53.3 per cent from 3.38 billion in 2007. In 2009, Halal exports surged to 8.36 billion baht. |SOURCE: BANGKOK POST, 23 APRIL 2010


MORE ON HALAL FOOD The Halal market is a trillion dollar multi-segmented industry, which should be explored by Bruneian entrepreneurs. To encourage wider knowledge and understanding of the market dynamics of the Halal market and Brunei’s role in this trillion market industry, approximately 70 final year students from the Faculty of Business, Economics and Policy Studies, who are taking Strategic Management and Strategic Public Management course, attended the lecture on ‘The Halal Market and The Best Role for Brunei in the Halal Market’ by Hajj Abdalhamid Evans, from Imarat Consultants. According to a press release, the lecture followed with an interactive question and answer session, where Abdalhamid discussed the importance of any country to position itself accordingly in the Halal market and undertake rigorous environmental scanning activities to identify what the competitors, such as other ASEAN countries, are doing to capitalise on the market opportunities. |SOURCE: MEAT TRADE NEWS DAILY, 21 APRIL 2010


TESCO UNVEILS ITS SECOND HALAL MEAT COUNTER Tesco has opened up its second Halal meat counter in the UK, at a ceremony held at its Hodge Hill store in Birmingham. The counter, which is in collaboration with the National Halal Food Group, was officially opened with a blessing given by local Imam, Sheikh Siddique. Tesco Store Manager, Emma Grant, said: “Demand in the store for Halal products is high and customers are delighted with the quality of the foods they can find here. The launch of the new counter means greater local choice and convenience for new and existing customers.” The Hodge Hill unveiling is the second Halal meat counter that the Birminghambased National Halal Food Group has opened for Tesco customers within the region. The store opened in December, creating 250 new jobs. National Halal Food Group Chief Executive, Muhammed Yaqoob, said: “The launch of the counter in Hodge Hill means that customers can readily obtain a range of high-quality meats, which meet specific spiritual requirements. “We are delighted to be able to work with Tesco to bring our products to the marketplace and feel confident that every shopper will find something they enjoy here.”

25 – 27th July 2010 AFRICA’S BIG SEVEN Gallagher Convention Centre Johannesburg, South Africa Exhibition Management Services Tel: +27 (0) 11 783 7250 Fax: +27 (0) 11 783 7269 Email: Web: 27 – 30th July 2010 CHINA QINGHAI INTERNATIONAL HALAL FAIR (CIHFP2010) Qinghai International Exhibition Center Qinghai, China China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) Tel: +86 10 8807 5397 Fax: +86 10 6802 3790 Web: 2nd – 5th August 2010 7th Kuala Lumpur Islamic Finance Forum (KLIFF 2010) Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia CERT Events Sdn Bhd Tel: +603 4108 1439 Fax: +603 4106 1549 Website: 4 – 7th August 2010 World Food Expo 2010 (WOFEX10) SMX Convention & World Trade Centre Metro Manila, Philippines Premier Events Plus Group, Inc. Telefax: +63 2 929 7963 Email: Web: 12 – 16th August 2010 HKTDC FOOD EXPO 2010 Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre Wan Chai, Hong Kong Hong Kong Trade Development Council Tel: (852) 2240 4812 Fax: (852) 2824 0026 Email: Web: 25 – 27th August 2010 SIAL MERCOSUR Centro Costa Salguero Buenos Aires, Argentina Exposium América Latina S.A. Tel/Fax: +54 11 5787 0257 Email: Web: 30th September – 3rd October 2010 Halal & Healthy Products Fair 2010 CNR Expo Istanbul, Turkey CNR Ekspo Trade Fairs Tel: +90 212 465 7474 Fax: +90 212 465 7476/ +90 212 465 747677 Email: Website: 7 – 10th October 2010 THAILAND RETAIL, FOOD & HOSPITALITY SERVICES (TRAFS) Bangkok International Trade & Exhibition Centre (BITEC) Bangkok, Thailand Kavin Intertrade Co.,Ltd. Tel: +66 (0) 2861 4013 Fax: +66 (0) 2861 4010 Email: Web:


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global news | events highlights


Promoting the Halal & the healthy

The Halal products sector, which is continuing to grow by the free market economy formed by itself, will meet at CNR Expo Fair and Convention Centre on 30 September – 3 October this year. The exhibition, to be organised by CNR Expo Fairs, intends to provide a contact point between manufacturers of Halal products and consumers. The fair will be organised in collaboration with GIMDES (Food and Consumption Goods Supervision and Certification Agency), a Turkey representative of World Halal Council (WHC), and with the support of KOSGEB (Small and Medium Enterprises Development Organisation). It is declared that in the Halal The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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and Healthy Products Fair, by the contributions of DTM (Undersecretariat of the Prime Ministry for Foreign Trade), purchase delegations from 40 countries will take place, including Germany, China, Dubai, Indonesia, Holland, Iraq, England, Iran, Syria and Saudi Arabia. In conjunction with the expo, the 8th WHC (World Halal Council) Congress will be held in Istanbul and this is considered as an extra advantage for the firms to promote themselves to the whole world by the synergy to be created thereby. Halal and Healthy Products Fair will provide opportunities for its exhibitors to establish contacts with the world Halal market and it will also

give its visitors the chance to meet and speak to Halal product manufacturers. The exhibition will be held in an area of 15,000 sq m and its exhibitors’ profile consists of Halal food and drinks, cosmetics, Islamic fashion and textile products, medical products, institutions providing Halal certification, state institutions and Islamic finance institutions. Among the groups expected to visit the fair are producers, retailers, importers, exporters, distributors and wholesalers, investors, suppliers, purchasing officers of hypermarkets and supermarkets, banks representatives, representatives of Halal certification firms, representatives of Islamic

federations and associations. As defined in the United Nations International Commission on Food Standards Codex Alimentarius Commission, the Halal food concept is “the food permitted according to Islamic rules”, and the Halal economy covers cosmetics, toys, pharmaceuticals, finance, tourism, and retail chains as well. It is estimated that the value of the Halal food market today is around USD660 billion in 2010 and the whole market is valued at approximately USD2 trillion dollars. The four-day fair will be open between 10 am to 7 pm.

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Gearing for Economic Resurgence

The 6th World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF), themed “Gearing for Economic Resurgence”, successfully concluded in Kuala Lumpur on 20 May 2010. The Forum was declared open by the Hon. Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib bin Tun Abdul Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia and Patron of the WIEF Foundation, and attracted 2,500 delegates from 67 countries. Special addresses were delivered by Heads of State and Government from Brunei Darussalam, Senegal, Indonesia, Kosovo, Maldives and Bangladesh, and moderated by the Prime Minister of Malaysia. Other important presentations were made by members of Royal families, former Heads of Government, the Secretary General of ASEAN, the President of the Islamic Development Bank, Ministers, Chief Executives of leading corporations and other thought leaders from the public and private sectors. WIEF’s commitment to diversity and inclusivity was evidenced by a Businesswomen and Young Leaders PreForum which was opened by the Hon. Tan Sri Muhyiddin Mohd Yassin, Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia. The WIEF Businesswomen Network (WBN) continues its focus on enhancing business and entrepreneurship skills through its training workshops and is launching an innovative, new, online, businesswomen exchange programme – WeBizNet. The WIEF Young Leaders Network (WYN) announced successes in placing deserving Muslim students in corporate internship

programmes and awards of academic scholarships. This year’s main Forum was held against the backdrop of a world emerging from a financial crisis which has affected all nations. In this challenging environment, nine countries took advantage of the Forum to showcase trade and investment opportunities in their respective countries. The WIEF ‘Business Matchmaking Lounge’ also continued to enable investors and entrepreneurs to meet informally. During the Forum, the leaders witnessed the signing of five commercial Agreements in the trade, banking and IT sectors. Additionally, in recognising the importance of creativity and innovation, the Forum for the first time included a unique creative arts programme entitled ‘The Marketplace of Creative Arts’. WIEF has yet again provided an inclusive Forum where experiences were shared and lessons were learned, from the expert speakers and from each other. Specific outcomes and proposals made by Leaders and participants during the Forum will be included in the 6th Forum Report. However, recognising the impact of the crisis and consistent with this year’s theme, and WIEF’s commitment to actionable outcomes, the WIEF will immediately begin working with the relevant leaders to further develop the following five specific proposals made during the Forum: i. Economic Summit: The financial crisis has created opportunities for new ideas, new economic models and even new values. The WIEF

will explore with Muslim leaders a plan to hold an Economic Summit which will focus on practical ways in which Muslim countries can enhance their own economic growth and development as well as exploring how Islamic banking and finance can contribute to a more sustainable international financial system. ii. Clean Energy Development Bank: Recognising the threat of climate change to all nations and the business opportunities in clean energy-related industries, the WIEF will evaluate specific actions to advance this important proposal. iii. Social Entrepreneurship Foundation: The WIEF will evaluate models of private sector-led social entrepreneurship, focusing on the special funding needs of SMEs (small and medium enterprises) and other enterprises throughout the Muslim countries. iv. Creativity and Innovation Incubation Centres: Reform of education, and training

and skills development systems are essential to national innovation and growth. The WIEF will liaise with academic leaders and institutions to craft a pilot plan for an ‘Incubation’ Centre. v. Youth Corps: The WIEF will initiate a ‘pilot’ test of this proposal to develop practical plans to harness the vibrancy of the youths and prepare them for leadership roles in future. The World Islamic Economic Forum wishes to record its appreciation to the Government of Malaysia for hosting and ensuring the success of the 6th WIEF in Kuala Lumpur. The Forum also accepts the gracious invitation delivered by H.E. Aset Issekeshev, Deputy Prime Minister, on behalf of the Republic of Kazakhstan, to host the 7th World Islamic Economic Forum in 2011 in Astana. It was agreed that this Statement be submitted to the Chairman and the Secretary General of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference and other relevant international organisations. The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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global news | events highlights

Halal Ecosystem at the 5th Brunei IHPE & IHMC

Bruneians saw a flurry of activities from 3-6 June 2010 at the International Convention Centre in Berakas, Brunei Darussalam where the 5th International Halal Products Expo (IHPE) and International Halal Market Conference (IHMC) were held. Ruzanna Muhammad reports.

The Expo The IHPE aims to be one of the major platforms to bring together both public and private sectors that will help Brunei explore the vast opportunities in the Halal market, and for local small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to penetrate international markets through pre-arranged networking sessions throughout this four-day event. The continuing presence of the Expo reinforces the Sultanate’s commitment to the nation towards the Halal industry. His Majesty Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam graciously officiated the opening of the International Halal Products Expo (IHPE) at the International Conference Centre in Berakas, Brunei on 3 June 2010. The Expo, celebrating its fifth edition this year, represented another milestone towards achieving the Sultanate’s Halal mission. His Majesty – accompanied The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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by His Royal Highness Prince Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office, and His Royal Highness Prince Abdul Malik – was greeted by the Minister of Industry and Primary Resources, Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Utama Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Yahya, as well as the Ministers of Health and Religious Affairs. First held in 2006, and organised by the Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources, along with the Ministries of Religious Affairs and Health, the IHPE is now held as an annual event in Brunei. Over the past years, the Expo has unveiled several national flagships such as: • Halal Label Certificate and Halal Label Order 2005; • Brunei Darussalam Halal Food Standard and Guidelines; • Brunei Halal Brand; • Local SME Packing Incentive Scheme; • Beras Laila; and • The Halal Science Centre and the Brunei Agrotech Park. Having drawn a crowd of 39,000 visitors last year, this year’s Expo received a third more visitors with the larger number of both local and international exhibitors. Adopting the concept of a Halal ecosystem, the Expo showcased fashion, Islamic financial products and services, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, and logistics services in more than 200 booths, with

Thailand being the largest participating country. New additions... An added twist to the event’s programme this year was the additional cooking demonstration by Celebrity Chef, Bobby Chin, which was also held to celebrate the winners of the cooking competition, ‘Cooking from the Heart’. This competition was launched earlier this year and was organised by Wafirah Holdings Sdn Bhd and Ghanim International Food Corporation Sdn Bhd. A special dinner was held at The Empire Hotel and Country Club on 3 June, where the winners were awarded and guests at the dinner got the opportunity of being the first to taste the winning dishes from appetiser, to main course, to dessert. Another new programme introduced this year was the ‘CEO Economic Forum: Learning Journey’. The forum represented a panel of senior executives from global companies who discussed opportunities and challenges for Brunei in lifestyle sectors such as pharmaceuticals, food retail, and tourism. The forum was moderated by Mr. Ross O’Brien from the Economist Magazine. The Conference In conjunction with the Expo was the 5th International Halal Market Conference (IHMC), which was held over two days from 5-6 June. The 5th IHMC brought a group of top Halal market

specialists to Brunei to address topics fitting this year’s theme, ‘Halal – The Next Decade’. As an important element in Brunei’s overall Halal agenda, IHMC is held every year with the IHPE. The aim of IHMC 2010 is to review some of the Halal sector developments of recent years, analyse the current state of the Halal market, and to gain some insight into how the market will be developing in the coming years. The IHMC was graced by the presence of Her Royal Highness Paduka Seri Pengiran Anak Puteri Hajah Masna binti Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, D.K.M.B., D.K., P.H.B.S., Ambassador At Large, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Brunei Darussalam. HRH Princess Masna gave the keynote address to a packed auditorium of over 350 delegates at the International Convention Centre. Topics discussed... As the Halal market begins to mature, the Halal sector is becoming associated with more than just food-related projects, and this is reflected in the breadth of topics discussed over the two days. The opening session saw presentations from Nestlé (Malaysia) Berhad, Al Islami Foods of Dubai, and from Brunei’s Ghanim International Food Corporation, as major food corporations naturally continue to dominate the Halal industry. These corporations are

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all focused on bringing Halal into the mainstream market, and are at the forefront of establishing their brands in international markets, if not already. Beyond the food sector, there are major developments underway in Islamic Finance, Travel and Tourism, as well as in online media and consumer awareness. Session two showcased these topics and deliberated on the way the expanding Halal consumer market is dividing the growth of new subsectors in these areas. Despite the overall economic climate, many Halal-related sectors are showing healthy

growth, and there is the new awareness that the 1.8 billion Muslims around the world are emerging as the fastest-growing consumer market in the world. For this reason, many countries are developing Halal-related programmes to drive new growth in their national economies. The second day saw presentations from within the ASEAN region as well as other parts of the world, including Thailand, Singapore, the Philippines, Australia, the UK, and BosniaHerzegovina. This session provided a comprehensive view of the ways the Halal sector is being developed in different parts of the world.

In closing... The 5th IHMC concluded with an open panel discussion where selected speakers addressed the overall issue of the direction the Halal market is expected to take in the coming decade. The IHMC has gained a reputation over the past few years for bringing speakers who are among the most innovative figures in the Halal industry, and this year saw no exception.

but also assist the country in the delivery of safe and quality Halal products and services globally. The increasing numbers of participants (who believe what Halal can bring to their businesses) at both the Expo and Conference every year is seen as a positive indicator, and many who left at the end of the four days were already looking forward to the 6th IHPE and IHMC next year.

At the end of the four days... With its strong Islamic credentials, Brunei, through the Expo and Conference, hopes to not only bring in commercial value partnerships, The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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7/26/10 8:40:25 AM

IHI Alliance news + updates


ICCI GENERAL ASSEMBLY 2010 Representatives from 24 Member States of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) wrapped up the 26th General Assembly of the Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) on 6 April 2010 in Doha, Qatar, with Halal as one of the major highlights of the Chamber’s agendas in developing a global Islamic economy. In the speech delivered by ICCI’s President, H.E. Sheikh Saleh Kamel, members of the Chamber were urged to work collectively towards greater consensus to accelerate the growth of Halal and improve the flow of Halal goods and services among OIC countries and the rest of the world with integrity highly intact. Representing IHI Alliance was CEO, Darhim Hashim, and member of Advisory Panel, Dr. Hani Mansour Al-Mazeedi, of Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research (KISR). The ICCI’s Halal agenda is setting a new approach in direction with more focus to be given to countries where Halal development is still in its infancy. Countries like Benin, Kazakhstan, Mauritania, Senegal and Uganda are expected to be the main beneficiaries of the programme. In this area, IHI Alliance is working towards greater collaboration with Islamic Development Bank (IDB) for financial and technical support to provide assistance not only to Muslim countries but also for Muslim minorities in non-OIC countries. In a series of meetings that followed, Dr. Hani called for a greater role by KISR in lending their expertise towards ICCI’s Halal development. Established in 1967, KISR is a reputable organisation that engages in scientific and applied research for several purposes including preserving the environment, serving the economy and has been the advisor for the Kuwaiti government in such areas. In discussion on matters concerning Shariah, International Islamic Fiqh Academy (IIFA) was seen as the most appropriate body to sit as the highest authority when it comes to resolving contentious and debates related to Halal. Headquartered in Jeddah, IIFA’s clout comes from being the official Shariah body of the OIC and has for decades contributed significantly in many areas of Islamic law in the modern era of Muslim civilisation. The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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01 ceo of IHI Alliance, Darhim Hashim presenting at International Conference on Halal Cosmetics & Toiletries (Halcos) on 13 April 2010 02 Panel discussion group at Halcos 2010 03 Ceo of IHI Alliance Darhim Hashim handing copies of the four published modules of ICCI-IHI Alliance Halal Standard to Dr. Hani Mansour AlMazeedi at the 5th World Halal Forum. Witnessing the ceremony was Malaysian Prime Minister, the Honorable Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Razak 04 Busy traffic at IHI Alliance booth at The World Halal Forum 2010 05 MoU signing with Penang International Halal Hub (PIHH) on the second day of the Forum 06 The second MoU signing with International Islamic University of Malaysia (IIUM)

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The International Halal Integrity Alliance ( IHI ALLIANCE ) is an international, non-profit initiative created to present the international Halal industry players with one definitive voice. The IHI ALLIANCE’s mission is to strengthen the Halal market and uphold the integrity of Halal for the benefit of all.




IHI ALLIANCE AT HALCOS 2010 In April 2010, the first ever conference dedicated to Halal cosmetics, International Conference on Halal Cosmetics and Toiletries (HalCos) was held at Matrade Exhibition and Convention Centre in Kuala Lumpur, gathering subject matter experts and

industry leaders to discuss the niche potential of the industry in the global Halal market. More than 15 speakers from Australia, Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand and United Kingdom were present at the two-day international conference. Officiated by Malaysia’s International Trade and Industry Deputy Minister,

Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir, the conference saw panelists and audience tackling some of the pressing issues in the awakening of global awareness of Halal cosmetics as part of the mainstream beauty market that has an estimated value of over USD270 billion annually. Speaking to reporters after the launch, Mukhriz said, Malaysia has a huge potential to develop more brands for the export market. “Malaysian producers should not be solely looking at penetrating the regional or Muslim markets alone. If we plan at an early stage to enter the global market as a whole, we possess the potential to be competitive within markets, including Europe, United States and Australia as well,” he said, adding that Halal cosmetics are gaining acceptance by both Muslims and non-Muslims alike. CEO of IHI Alliance, Darhim Hashim, presented a paper entitled, “Modular Approach to Developing Halal Cosmetics Standard”, giving an overview of Halal cosmetics’ potential and urging the need for proper regulation and harmonisation. “Guidelines must be user-friendly and clear, given that most of the big players are nonMuslim owned multi-nationals,” explained Darhim. He later gave an update on IHI Alliance’s global Halal initiatives in developing a single standard aimed to be the guideline for Halal development in Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC) member countries. Halal Cosmetics and Toiletries was one of the draft modules of the ICCI-IHI Alliance Halal Standard released for public review at the 5th World Halal Forum in June. Another interesting topic presented at the conference was on the evolution of Halal industry and its future delivered by Hajj Abdalhamid David Evans from Imarat Consultants. Abdalhamid took the audience on the evolution of Halal industry that began with small establishments of Halal meat outlets by Muslim immigrants scattered around the world to the current scenario, where the industry is blossoming with opportunities especially in countries like Brunei and Malaysia where the government places vital support in developing the industry. ICCI-IHI ALLIANCE HALAL STANDARD: A STEP CLOSER TOWARDS GLOBAL HARMONISATION The World Halal Forum 2010 saw the debut of the highly anticipated ICCI-IHI Alliance Halal Standard published modules to an overwhelming audience of Halal industry stakeholders who The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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IHI Alliance news + updates

IHI Around the Globe gathered in Kuala Lumpur for the 5th edition of the Forum. In the historic ceremony, Malaysia’s Prime Minister, the Honorable Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Abdul Razak, witnessed a symbolic handover of the first copy of Logistics, Food Services, Slaughtering and Processing, and Animal Welfare modules from the CEO of IHI Alliance, Darhim Hashim, to Dr. Hani Mansour Al Mazeedi who was representing the Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI). Najib, in his keynote address, praised the commendable effort of IHI Alliance, citing the initiative as a major milestone that will solidify the country’s position as a catalyst to the global Halal market that holds an estimated market worth of USD2.3 trillion annually. He also added that IHI Alliance was on its way to establish itself as the global Halal authority and may begin the process of unifying a fragmented community. The four Standard modules were initially released as drafts during last year’s World Halal Forum before undergoing a public review period from 4 May 2009 to 31 December 2009. Comments and suggestions were compiled and incorporated into revisions before all modules were submitted to the IHI Alliance Shariah Board for final approval. “The ICCI-IHI Alliance Halal Standard takes a holistic approach in addressing all activities in the supply chain, hence the modules,” said Darhim speaking to a room packed with reporters during a press conference after the launching ceremony. “The standards are also a starting point for companies which are clueless as to where to start. We see interest from non-majority Muslim countries, which have The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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begun to realise the potential of the Halal industry.” According to Darhim, the Standard will play a greater role to broaden the harmonisation of the fragmented Halal industry and ultimately spur the next leap forward to improve market accessibility of Halal goods and services among 57 OIC (Organisation of the Islamic Conference) country states and the rest of the world. IHI Alliance was mandated to develop a global Halal standard following the resolution at the inaugural World Halal Forum in 2006. This mandate was further strengthened when IHI Alliance formed a strategic collaboration with ICCI, a key affiliated organ that has been entrusted to spearhead the global Halal agenda of the OIC. ICCI represents the private sector of the 57 OIC member countries and its partnership with IHI Alliance was formalised at the General Assembly held in Doha, Qatar in April 2010. The ICCI-IHI Alliance Halal Standard was developed in accordance to guidelines adapted from ISO/IEC (The International Organization for Standardization / the International Electrotechnical Commission), Guidelines for International Standards Development, while adhering to WTO-TBT (World Trade Organisation-Technical Barriers to Trade) Code of Good Practice for Standards Development. The Standard also refers to Malaysia Halal standard MS 1500:2009, Halal Food – Production, Preparation, Handling and Storage - General Guidelines (Second Revision). At the Forum, IHI Alliance also introduced another four new draft modules. Laboratory and Testing, Animal Feed, Cosmetics and Toiletries, and

30 June - 4 July 2010 THAIFEX – WORLD OF FOOD ASIA 2010 Event profile: Thaifex – World of Food Asia is set to be held in Bangkok, Thailand, where global players of food and beverage meet. It is the leading trade platform for the food and beverage industry in South East Asia. Based on the world’s largest food and beverage trade fair – ANUGA in Cologne, Germany, Thaifex – World of Food Asia is a single exhibition for all industry players ranging from processing technology and ingredients to end-products. 12 – 22 July 2010 BIMP-EAGA/IHI ALLIANCE HALAL INDUSTRY WORKSHOP - POULTRY Event profile: This initiative is IHI Alliance’s collaboration with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) of Germany to organise a series of workshop in the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA). The workshops will be focused on educating local entrepreneurs within the region on Halalcompliant methods and requirements for poultry production based on three modules of ICCI-IHI Alliance Halal Standard. 26 – 27 July 2010 OXFORD GLOBAL ISLAMIC BRANDING AND MARKETING FORUM Event profile: The Saïd Business School of Oxford University will host its inaugural Islamic Branding and Marketing Forum aimed at bringing together over 200 business leaders, branding and marketing experts, and thought leaders to discuss the key issues that face this growing market. This Forum will be the first to bring Muslim and non-Muslim leaders and companies from a variety of business sectors together to discuss how to develop better trade and business relations and to learn from each other about the markets involved and the techniques required. 30 July – 1 August 2010 1 MALAYSIA 1 HALAL CAMPAIGN Event profile: The 1 Malaysia 1 Halal campaign also known as 1M1H is JAKIM’s latest initiative at increasing the awareness on Halal certification and the Malaysia Halal logo issued by JAKIM and/or State Islamic Religious Council (MAIN).

Food Processing modules were released for a period of public review until the end of December 2010. On the second day of World Halal Forum, IHI Alliance signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Penang International Halal Hub and International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) in two separate ceremonies. The collaboration with PIHH will have IHI Alliance assisting the developmental agency with their Halal training programmes while The MoU signed with IIUM highlighted a new working relationship for both parties in Halal standard development.

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World Halal Forum 2010

Najib’s take on Halal “...Halal has been accepted as an industry in its own right. ... Because of this fact, now is the time to capitalise on this acceptance, beginning with laying the foundation for uniformity.”

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Malaysia’s Halal agenda carries on with the current Prime Minister, Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Abdul Razak. The fifth World Halal Forum (WHF) was a platform for Najib to put forward his views on the encompassing nature of Halal as a source of economic growth.

urporting the idea of Halal Economy, the Malaysian Prime Minister, in his opening speech, pointed out that it is time to get real with Halal and emphasised the need to focus on practical and effective measures. “Realising the potential of the Halal industry requires a thorough understanding of all the issues and challenges that face it. We’ve aimed high and achieved a lot, but it is time to take stock and realistically assess our progress in order to effectively re-evaluate our strategies, ensuring that we’re on the right track to fully capitalise on the enormous untapped potential that remains. Consensus and cooperation, especially among Muslim nations, will be critical to our success. I ask all those involved to focus on practical and effective measures towards this theme, and not become hindered with pedantic exertions.” Pushing for harmony and universal acceptance for a Halal

economy, Najib accentuated the “need to think beyond industries and move into the larger realm of a Halal Economy – a value-based economy rooted in trust, integrity and fairness.” Hajjah Jumaatun Azmi, founder and managing director of KasehDia Sdn Bhd – organiser of the WHF, said in her welcoming speech: “Our concern is the market. In a world laden with crisis from financial, health to environmental, we believe this forum [WHF] can steer and open up new global solutions for businesses that make up an industry that is grounded in compassion for all living things, in fairness, in goodness and integrity. We’re looking at a new kind of economy.” She added, “...the Halal industry, in its basic form, is an Islamic value attached to products and services. This has an impact on how products should be financed, sourced, produced, processed, distributed, stored, sold and consumed for 1.8 billion people in over 140 countries. And this applies to

A visit to Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM) A special treat for delegates was a site visit to Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM) in Nilai, Seremban, just an hour away from Kuala Lumpur on 23 June. Hosted and organised by the university, WHF delegates got an exclusive tour of the University’s Research and Testing laboratories in the Faculty of Science and Technology, as well as the World Fatwa Management and Research Institute (INFAD). The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010

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cover story many areas, from finance, to fashion to food. ...Halal is after all symptomatic of what the world needs today – for what is Halal if not a set of integrity standards? A true compass that serves to guide on what is permitted and what is forbidden. It sets apart the truth from the false – the right from the wrong.” She also drew attention to

the fact that there has been a shift in consumer demands, which led to changes in the global industry: “There is a shift of the concept of Halal from the purely religious realm to that of business, of commerce, of public policies, of science; a shift from Halal being a concern and interest of Muslims, to a concern and interest of all. For

Muslims, this is a shift from not only believing Halal is a lifestyle in your community but being able to live it properly and comfortably no matter where you are in the world.” Agreeably, Najib said, “...Halal has been accepted as an industry in its own right. This acceptance has grown to such an extent that

One step closer towards harmonised standards & full accreditation Host of WHF 2010, IHI Alliance, announced and presented four published Global Halal Standard (ICCI-IHI Alliance Halal Standard), which were available for purchase at the forum. The four published standards are IHIAS 0100:2010 Logistics, IHIAS 0200:2010 Food Services, IHIAS 0500:2010 Animal Welfare, and IHIAS 0600:2010 Slaughtering and Processing. Additionally, another four draft modules of the ICCI-IHI Alliance Halal Standard were released for public review until 31 December 2010. The draft modules are on Laboratory Testing and Analysis, Animal Feed, Food Processing, and Cosmetics and Toiletries. In support of IHI Alliance, Najib said at the opening ceremony, “Malaysia seeks to amplify our role by working towards the development of Global Standards within the larger Halal industry. I am pleased to announce today, that the International Halal Integrity Alliance (IHI Alliance) – an initiative born out of the World Halal Forum – has moved one step closer to achieving the goal of a harmonised Halal industry with the publication of four modules of The Global Halal Standard. I am proud to say that this was achieved with vital input from JAKIM (Department of Islamic Development Malaysia) and Standards Malaysia as well as from international stakeholders. Having obtained the mandate together with the Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) at the OIC Islamic Summit in Dakar, Senegal in March 2008, the IHI Alliance is now strongly poised to establish itself as the global Halal authority and may begin the process of unifying a fragmented community.” Apart from developing standards, IHI Alliance has an Accreditation Scheme that advise Halal certification bodies from around the world to implement the Global Halal Management System (GHMS), which includes the five pillars The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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in Halal certification (i.e. Shariah compliance, food safety, quality management system, corporate social responsibility, and environmental management). The IHI Alliance Accreditation Scheme is divided into three phases, and interested parties must first become an Ordinary Member with IHI Alliance as a first requirement: • Phase 1: Preliminary Review (Documentation Audit) • Phase 2: Implementation of the GHMS • Phase 3: Accreditation Review (inclusive of documentation, system and physical audits) After a stringent first round of review and evaluation, seven certification bodies have succeeded and are one step closer towards full accreditation. Certificates of Associate Member were presented to the representatives of four successful members during The Halal Journal Awards Gala Dinner: • Agency for Halal Quality Certification, Bosnia and Herzegovina (Amir Sakic, Director) • Halal India Private Limited, India (Mohamed Jinna, CEO) • Halal Agency Serbia, Serbia (Mustafa Yusufspahic, General Manager/ CEO) • European Institute of Halal Certification of Germany, Germany (Yusuf Calkara, General Manager) The remaining three new Associate Members who were unable to attend the Gala Dinner are: • Halal Institute of Spain, Spain • Halal Audit Company (HAC), The Netherlands • All Things Halal (ATH), United Kingdom Note: Those interested in purchasing the published standard can do so by contacting info@ihialliance. org. For the draft modules, they can be downloaded from, and comments on the draft modules should be submitted to

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the mainstream industry is gravitating to Halal. Because of this fact, now is the time to capitalise on this acceptance, beginning with laying the foundation for uniformity.” “As the new generation of Muslims are better educated and able to obtain a higher income level, many sectors are creating products and services to cater to

this growing consumer demand. This, coupled with the larger acceptance of Halal by those of other faith, has resulted in the Halal mindset transforming from being just food products to the ‘farm to fork approach.’ This has, in turn, triggered demands in other areas, such as non-food consumer products, Islamic Finance,

A research conducted by the World Halal Forum Secretariat stated that the global Halal products market is estimated at a whopping USD2.3 trillion (not including banking), and 67 per cent or USD1.4 trillion of this market is comprised of food and beverage. Pharmaceuticals make up 22 per cent or USD506 billion, with cosmetics and personal care amounting to USD230 billion.

WHF 2010 kicked off the Halal Malaysia Week The halls and corridors of KLCC were once again decorated with WHF banners and buntings which hung from the ceilings and lined the hallways. Themed ‘State of the Industry: International Trade and Market Access’, the fifth WHF kicked off the Halal Malaysia Week, which was followed by the third World Halal Research Summit and culminated with the seventh International Halal Showcase (MIHAS). The Halal Malaysia Week has once again made Malaysia a focal point not only for Halal trade, but also in thought leadership, and makes an excellent example of public-private initiatives to advance the Halal industry to the forefront of the global economy. Organised by KasehDia Sdn Bhd and hosted by the International Halal Integrity Alliance (IHI Alliance), WHF 2010 gathered 932 participants from 46 countries who discussed and deliberated on various issues that revolves around the Halal Economy – a convergence of the Halal industry and Islamic finance sector, which brings together Muslims and non-Muslims across all cultures and ethnicities – and together, reviewed the current state of the Halal industry for an improved way forward. With the potential of Halal to be a conduit for greater harmony and acceptance across national and cultural boundaries, this year’s theme was timely as the world economy opens doors for a striving and promising Halal Economy. WHF 2010 was graced by the presence of the Malaysian Prime Minister, Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Razak, and the former Malaysian Prime Minister, Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. Fast Facts: • Registered Delegates: 783 • Media Attendance: 149 • Countries Represented: 46 • MOU Signed: 4 • Audited PR Value (Malaysian Only): RM14,995,849 The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010

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However, just like any other economy, the Halal Economy has its own issues. To overcome the major hurdles and challenges that lie ahead for the Halal industry, Najib recommends for all to establish and maintain strong strategic alliances with mainstream players, and to leverage the best expertise available if Muslims are to advance in this field.

Strategic alliances... Over the two days, participants saw the official exchange of three memorandums of understanding (MoUs). The first, witnessed by the Malaysian Prime Minister, was between Penang International Halal Hub (PIHH) Sdn Bhd and Malaysia-Yemen Investment. This agreement is meant to bring investments into Malaysia and Yemen through cooperative working relationship with the government and business community. Malaysia-Yemen Investment is established for macro and micro consultancy in developing the Halal Industrial Park in Yemen. The last two MoUs were signed between IHI Alliance and PIHH, and International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) in two separate ceremonies. The collaboration with PIHH will have IHI Alliance assisting the developmental agency with their Halal training programmes, while the MoU signed with IIUM highlighted a new working relationship for both parties in Halal standard development.

logistics and other sectors such as tourism,” he added. A research conducted by the World Halal Forum Secretariat stated that the global Halal products market is estimated at a whopping USD2.3 trillion (not including banking), and 67 per cent or USD1.4 trillion of this market is comprised of food and beverage. Pharmaceuticals make up 22 per cent or USD506 billion, with cosmetics and personal care amounting to USD230 billion. “This is the mark of an economy in its infancy, and with concerted effort, we can nurture it into a thriving, robust economy. Taking this into consideration, I applaud all of you for participating in a forum such as WHF. Each of us understands that the work we do here can ultimately boost labour, capital, land resources, both supply and demand, leading to overall economic development particularly for Muslims,” said Najib. With an astronomical potential size of the total Halal market, the Halal Economy deserves serious consideration by governments, industry players, investors, scholars and the academia globally. However, just like any other economy, the Halal Economy has its own issues. To overcome

the major hurdles and challenges that lie ahead for the Halal industry, Najib recommends for all to establish and maintain strong strategic alliances with mainstream players, and to leverage the best expertise available if Muslims are to advance in this field. “I foresee powerful synergies as a result of smart partnerships between mainstream industries and Muslim organisations. Muslims must seize opportunities to propel themselves into higher value-added activities and knowledge-based skills, such as quality assurance and compliance, training, management and branding.” “Halal is a growing industry that seeks to be culturally inclusive. It is based on wholesome Islamic values that have a universal appeal. Halal as a brand is a reassurance of safety, quality and humane treatment of animals. It embodies values that are not just for Muslims, but for everyone. As a Muslim leader, I am reaching out to Muslims and those of other faiths globally. Join us in this altruistic endeavour and together we can benefit from the Halal economy, which has enormous and still largely untapped potential,” he added.

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Networking & deliberations at the forum As a prestigious gathering place for all experts, scholars and players in the industry, WHF 2010 was no exception as it once again provided an excellent networking platform for all participants. Apart from that, delegates had the opportunity to listen to and interact with experts from different parts of the world, from all sectors within the Halal industry. Among the speakers and panellists at the forum were: • Hakimah Mohd Yusoff (Department of Islamic Development Malaysia, JAKIM) • Badlisyah Abdul Ghani (CIMB Islamic Bank) • Dr. Cédomir Nestorovic (ESSEC Business School Paris, France) • Dr. Haluk Anil (DIALREL Project, Cardiff University, UK) • Dr. Mohammad F.M.S. AlMotairan (Kuwait University) • Tamer Fawzy Mansour (Central Islamica Brasileira de Alimentos Halal, CIBAL Halal, Brazil) • Dr. Tony Zohrab (New Zealand Food Safety Authority) • Rafaiq Bakri Zakaria (Standards Malaysia) • Dato’ Dr. Aziz Jamaluddin (Department of Veterinary Services, Malaysia) • Prof. Dato’ Dr. Muhamad Muda (Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia, USIM) • Hisham Harun Hashim (International Red Cross & Crescent Societies, Geneva) • Leonard Ariff Abdul Shatar (Chemical Company of Malaysia Berhad) • Wang Xihui (China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, Qinghai Provincial Committee, China) • Dr. Anwar Nasim (Organization of the Islamic Conference Standing Committee on Science and Technology, COMSTECH, Pakistan) • Dr. John Bennett (University of Colombo, Sri Lanka) • Dr. Behzad Ghareyazie (Strategic Research Center, Iran) • Dr. Hani Mansour Mosa AlMazeedi (Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research, KISR) • Mariam Abdul Latif (Halal Industry Development Corporation, HDC) • Darhim Dali Hashim (IHI Alliance) Topics discussed throughout the two-day forum were: • Perspective from Fiqh on Global Halal Regulation • Debunking the Myths: Understanding the Facts and The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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Figures of the Global Halal Market • Variations in Halal Rules and Practices, Consumer Demands and Certification • Regulatory Framework for Halal Industry in New Zealand • Halal Malaysian Standards: Global Recognition • Halal Foods Assurance System for Worldwide Humanitarian/ Relief Efforts • Ethics and Corporate Responsibility in the Halal Industry: Case of CCM Group • Integrating Multimodal Transports and Production Chain for the Halal Industry New additions to this year’s programme were two workshops concurrently held on the second day of the forum – ‘Marketing Halal Products’ and ‘Genetically Modified Crops and Halal’. The ‘Marketing Halal Products’ workshop covered the following topics: • Overview and the Rise of Muslim Consumers • Understanding Global Market Requirements and Consumer Behaviour • Halal Values and Product Price Premium • Other Issues on Marketing Halal Products Whereas in a room jam-packed with delegates interested in scientific developments, the ‘Genetically Modified Crops and Halal’ workshop drew the crowd with the following topics: • The Rise of Genetically Modified Crops and their Impact • Global Status of Biotech Crops: Benefits to Developing Countries • Islam and Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) All in all, the forum ended with delegates, speakers and the organisers looking forward to the second WHF Europe and WHF 2011, and taking with them new ideas and knowledge to be shared with their peers and the public. Note: Only for delegates at the forum, the speakers’ presentations can be downloaded from the WHF website (www.worldhalalforum. org). Also to look out for are the full reports of the WHF 2010 and the ‘Genetically Modified Crops and Halal’ workshop (complete with clear resolutions) which will be made available for downloading on the WHF website. There were also strong suggestions for WHF 2011 to be held out of Malaysia, but this has not been formalised yet, so keep logging on to the WHF website for updates.

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cover story

Celebrating the movers & shakers of 2010


he Halal Journal Awards, first awarded in 2006 is the Halal industry’s most prestigious and sought after awards. It is a symbol of excellence and distinction, and marks milestone achievements within the industry. This year’s awards were presented at The Halal Journal Awards Gala Dinner, exclusively held by KasehDia Sdn Bhd and sponsored by Nestlé (Malaysia) Berhad, to honour and celebrate success within the global Halal industry at KLCC on 21 June 2010. That night, guests present had the chance to have a taste of the Malaysian culture with a line up of cultural stops outside the dining hall after a long first day of the forum. Quiet chatters of excitement were heard as guests were entertained by the tunes from the local traditional musical instrument, gamelan; songket and basket weaving; batik painting; as well as Hard-Knocks (to shape pewter into bowls, and so on) by Royal Selangor – Malaysia’s renowned pewter company.

At this year’s Awards, an interesting difference from previous years was a presentation on comic as entertainment by special guest speaker, Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa, renowned the world over for his creation of THE 99 – a series of graphic novels and super heroes based on the Islamic archetype. As the guests were full, relaxed and entertained, The Halal Journal Awards 2010 were presented by the former Malaysian Prime Minister, YABhg Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to seven companies and individuals from around the world for their outstanding initiatives in seven out of eight categories. The Most Creative Marketing Campaign award category has been left out at the discretion of the judges this year as there were no suitable nominees commendable of the award, although nominations for The Halal Journal Awards 2010 came from all over the world including the United Kingdom, Australia, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, and many others.

This year’s Winners... Best Product 2010: SimplySiti Malaysia’s songstress and entrepreneur, Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza, took part of the limelight that evening, taking home the award for her Halal beauty and skincare range using the latest technology in skincare, SimplySiti. The products are suitable for all women, particularly in hot and humid climates, and Muslim women in particular as it cuts down the routine of taking off make-up before prayers and putting it back on. Best Islamic Financial Service or Product 2010: FORAS International Investment Company FORAS International Investment Company of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, was established at the initiative of the Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry in partnership with the Islamic Development Bank. It signed an agreement with the Ministry of Housing in Mali, to finance a housing project amounting to USD500 million, constructing 60,000 residential units for low income people.

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Recently, Forbes named THE 99 as one of the top 20 trends sweeping the globe and most recently, President Barack Obama praised Dr. Naif and THE 99 as perhaps the most innovative of the thousands of new entrepreneurs viewed by his Presidential Summit on Entrepreneurship.

Community & Environmental Development 2010: Colgate-Palmolive (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd Colgate-Palmolive (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd was awarded for their nationwide ‘Bright Smiles, Bright Futures’ and ‘Oral Health Month’ dental programmes. This initiative of oral hygiene and cleanliness is in line with Islamic practices. Colgate-Palmolive’s products are Halal certified by JAKIM, and together with the Malaysian Dental Association, have worked tirelessly and successfully to promote and raise awareness on ‘Zero Cavities’ to over 500,000 children in Malaysia. Travel & Hospitality 2010: Crescentrating Pte Ltd For this category, the award went to Crescentrating Pte Ltd of Singapore, a pioneer in the field of ‘Halal-Friendly Travel’, launching the world’s first rating standard for Travel and Tourism facilities and services for Halal-friendliness. Crescentrating. com focuses on supporting Muslim travellers’ needs worldwide by providing useful information such as hotels with Halal eateries, hotel rooms with Qiblah directions, prayer times, and hadiths related to travel, amongst other useful tips. Best Service Provider 2010: Al-Jazeera English Al-Jazeera English bagged this award category as an influential global information brand, and as the world’s first global English language news channel headquartered in the Middle East. It provides news and current affairs reporting from the developing world back to the West and from the southern to the northern hemisphere. The channel pushes boundaries by giving voice to untold stories, promotes debate, and challenges established perceptions. Best Innovation in the Halal Industry 2010: Founded by Iranian-Kuwaiti brothers based in The Netherlands, has revolutionised the search market for Muslims by coming up with the world’s first Islamic orientated search engine that uses a search algorithm to rate the relevancy of websites that is based on the culture, lifestyle and mindset of Muslims. It gives Muslims worldwide the chance to explore the internet without coming across immoral or pornographic content. has been hailed a success after it attracted more than three million visitors in its first month of operation. Outstanding Personal Achievement: Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa is a Kuwaiti clinical psychologist and creator of THE 99, the first group of comic superheroes born of an Islamic archetype, as Muslims believe that power is ultimately God and God has 99 key attributes. Recently, Forbes named THE 99 as one of the top 20 trends sweeping the globe and most recently, President Barack Obama praised Dr. Naif and THE 99 as perhaps the most innovative of the thousands of new entrepreneurs viewed by his Presidential Summit on Entrepreneurship. THE 99 has grown from a comic book series into a franchise boasting theme parks, a global animation series, co-produced by media giant Endemol, and will be teaming up with cultural icons Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman. hj

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Is Genetically Modified Food Halal?

Words by Dr. Mahvash Hussain-Gambles

Serious concerns raised by scientists & scholars

The 1970s saw the start of genetic modification technology, which in essence takes genes from one species and forces it into the DNA of another species to produce Genetically Modified (GM) food. These ‘modified’ genes produce proteins which generate specific characteristics or traits, such as highly productive and resilient crops, vegetables growing in the desert, and vitamin-fortified grains.

Thus, genetic modification promises significant advantages such as feeding millions of starving people of the world, as well as environmental benefits – by reducing the amount of land needed to grow crops, thus allowing more land to be used for natural habitats. Genetic modification or genetic engineering is not to be confused with cloning, which is exact biological copies of normal animals, identical twins of sorts.

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“There are conflicting views amongst Islamic scholars or the Muftis on whether GM is Halal or not. Perhaps the best approach would be to define what uses would be Haram and Halal rather than a ‘one size fits all’ approach.”


here are over 40 plant varieties which are at commercialisation stage and a large amount of food stuff on a supermarket shelf would already contain GM food or its derivatives. Microbial rennet (used in many dairy produce including cheese), grains such as maize, corn or rice or even everyday vegetables like spinach or tomatoes (or its derivative such as tomato sauce or other types of cooking sauces containing tomatoes) can be from a GM source. Let us not forget livestock which is often fed on GM grains. Governments around the world are working hard to establish regulatory processes to monitor the effects of GM, approving new varieties of GM plants and labelling regulations for foods containing GM, depending on the political, social and economic climate within each country or region. In the European Union (EU) for example, if a food contains genetically modified organisms (GMOs), or contains ingredients produced from GMOs, this must be indicated on the label. This means products such as flour, oils and glucose syrups have to be labelled as GM if they are from a GM source. However, products produced with GM technology (cheese produced with GM enzymes, for example) do not have to be labelled. Products such as meat, The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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“Without adequate testing of the long-term effects of ingesting GM products, there is no way of guaranteeing that there is no long-term health issues associated with a particular type of genetic modification.”

milk and eggs from animals fed on GM animal feed also do not need to be labelled. Due to major global inconsistencies on the regulation of GM food, it is impossible to ascertain which everyday food stuff is GM-derived; only local food regulatory authorities within each country can provide clarification on this matter.


he possible introduction of animal genes into food plants also presents considerable ethical difficulties for Muslims and members of other religions which forbid the eating of certain animals The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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or their by-products. At present, due to lack of labelling regulations, it is impossible to tell whether the GM food stuff on our supermarket shelves already contains animal genes. However, present commercial technology appears to be more focused on splicing bacterial genes into plant genes, rather than animal genes. Experimentally, pig genes have already been planted into plants (Pig Genes Introduced into Rice Plant – http://www.agnet. org/library/rh/2002009b/) and plant genes have been planted in pigs (Transgenic pigs expressing plant genes, Heiner Niemann in

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2004 May 11; 101(19): 7211–7212). It is hypothesised that human genes may also be put into plants as part of the ‘functional food’ fad of biotech companies. Such foods would be designed for specific health problems. Scientists are concerned about putting human genes into plants, which they argue would go beyond crossing the species barrier, as it would cross the kingdom barrier (animal to plant). This barrier has already been broken, with transfers of firefly genes to corn, hamster genes to tobacco and flounder genes to tomatoes ( When considering whether GM food as a product of genetic modification technology is Halal or not, we should also bear in mind that genetic modification as a process does not only apply to foodstuff, but also promises to improve the quality of human life. For instance it has been used medicinally to manufacture cheaper vaccines, and to provide an alternative to natural animal insulin (usually derived from the pancreases of pigs or cattle) to treat diabetes. Thus providing a potential Halal source of medicine for the treatment of diabetes (one of the fastest growing diseases in the Muslim world). However, after many decades of practical application of genetic modification, certainly for foodstuff, serious questions have been raised by scientists. Biochemical pesticides or biopesticides is another application of GM food. Biopesticides are naturally occurring substances produced by GM plants to control pests by non-toxic mechanisms. GM plants genetically engineered with natural materials such as bacteria genes will allow GM crops to survive by producing substances, such as insect sex pheromones that interfere with mating, as well as various scented

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plant extracts that attract insect pests to traps. GM plants that produce biopesticides will increase their resistance to many different kinds of pests. Conventional pesticides, by contrast, are generally synthetic materials that directly kill or inactivate the pest and may affect different existing organisms, from birds to insects to mammals. In addition, biopesticides are often effective in very small quantities and often decompose quickly, thereby resulting in lower exposures and largely avoiding environmental problems (pollution) that can be caused by conventional pesticides. An example of a disadvantage of GM plant is in the case of plants that are genetically modified to allow high survival rate under very high doses of herbicides (giving farmers more flexibility in weeding), which leads to using even stronger and potentially more dangerous chemicals as the weeds become more resistant to one weed killer, thus needing an even stronger one. This may cause damage to wild life and the wider ecosystem (as stated in references 1 and 2). Furthermore, with cross-pollination it is possible that these strains may ‘leak’ out causing permanent and unpredictable damage to our environment. Questions have also been raised about the long-term safety of GM food for human consumption. Scientists agree that there is a high possibility of ‘accidental changes’ in genetically engineered plants, which may produce unexpectedly high doses of plant toxins. GM crops might have “increased levels of known The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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naturally occurring toxins,” and the “appearance of new, not previously identified” toxins (as stated in references 3, 4 and 5). The same mechanism can also produce allergens, carcinogens, or substances that inhibit assimilation of nutrients. Laboratory tests as well as anecdotal human studies show GM to be linked to toxic reactions in the digestive tract and liver damage. Animals fed on GM feed were shown to have higher death rates and organ damage. Signs of reproductive failure and infant mortality, sterility in livestock as well as GM crops triggering off immune reactions and increasing incidence of allergies in humans have all been reported (as mentioned in reference 5).


ithout adequate testing of the longterm effects of ingesting GM products, there is no way of guaranteeing that there is no long-term health issues associated with a particular type of genetic modification. Just because one type of GM does not cause problems does not infer that another type of modification will be free of health risks. Since GM foods are not properly tested before they enter the market, we consumers are the guinea pigs. With this knowledge in the public domain, it comes as no surprise that the sale of organic-certified foodstuff (that do not allow any GM ingredients) is going through the roof around the world, as cautious consumers are deliberately avoiding foodstuff that may contain genetically modified crops. Let us also not forget the

ethical dilemma in the GM debate. Genetics is essentially the science of the building blocks of life. It could be argued that by using genetic modification, we are embarking on a slippery slope down the path of Eugenics, from preventing critical diseases to occur, creating new organs for transplants, or inhibiting certain natural human traits to occur, which have been created by Allah the Almighty for reasons only known to Him. Due to the many different types of genetic modifications and their applications from medical to foodstuff, there are conflicting

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“It is hypothesised that human genes may also be put into plants as part of the ‘functional food’ fad of biotech companies. Such foods would be designed for specific health problems. Scientists are concerned about putting human genes into plants, which they argue would go beyond crossing the species barrier, as it would cross the kingdom barrier (animal to plant).” views amongst Islamic scholars or the Muftis on whether GM is Halal or not. Perhaps the best approach would be to define what uses would be Haram and Halal rather than a ‘one size fits all’ approach. It is my personal opinion that Muslims should exercise caution with regard to GM foods, as there is nothing to lose by holding back until scientists know more about the long-term health effects of GM foods. It is vitally important that the specific modification type and entire manufacturing process should be investigated, including its long and short-

term implications for human health and the environment. This is in keeping with the premise of Halal, which is about health, safety and benefit for all mankind.


*Note: The author would like to thank her husband, Malcolm Amir Hussain-Gambles for his contribution to this article as well as Dr. Hani Mansour Mosa Al-Mazeedi from Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research (KISR) for his helpful comments on this article. *About the Author: Dr. Mahvash Hussain-Gambles (Bsc, MA, PhD, MRSC, Dip Hom) is the founder and formulator of Saaf Pure Skincare UK. Dr. Mah has a Doctorate in Clinical Trials (Leeds Medical School, UK), an in-depth knowledge of healing plants and evidence-based medicine due to her formal training in Homeopathic Medicine, first degree in Pharmacology and later a Masters Degree in Health Service Research, with work experience in the field of cancer medicine. She is highly published in her field and also a Member of the Royal Society of Chemistry and the Society for Cosmetic Scientists. References: 1. 2. de Vendômois JS, Roullier F, Cellier D, Séralini GE. A Comparison of the Effects of Three GM Corn Varieties on Mammalian Health. Int J Biol Sci 2009; 5:706-726. 3. “Elements of Precaution: Recommendations for the Regulation of Food Biotechnology in Canada; An Expert Panel Report on the Future of Food Biotechnology prepared by The Royal Society of Canada at the request of Health Canada Canadian Food Inspection Agency and Environment Canada” The Royal Society of Canada, January 2001. 4. Edwin J. Mathews, Ph.D., in a memorandum to the Toxicology Section of the Biotechnology Working Group. Subject: Analysis of the Major Plant Toxicants. Dated October 28, 1991. 5. Division of Food Chemistry and Technology and Division of Contaminants Chemistry, “Points to Consider for Safety Evaluation of Genetically Modified Foods: Supplemental Information,” November 1, 1991, 6. The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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7/26/10 8:49:05 AM

The Scope of Products in India

Words by Shafeeq ur Rahman

Know the consumers, understand the market & supply to their demands.

ndia achieved higher economic growth in recent years and presently it has the target to mark the 11 per cent growth for the financial year 2010-11. Consistent increase in per capita income witnesses the prosperity of the country, which resulted in the growing number of middle income population and holding of higher purchasing power. Shift of larger middle income group ultimately widens the consumer market in India. It becomes, now, the lucrative market for investors in the business of durable goods, processed food and beverage, real estate, financing, textile, travel, and so on. Competition between the companies has given greater choices to consumers among new style brand products and services in Indian market. Progressive trend in per capita income over a period of time after liberalising the Indian economy can be better visualised in Figure 1. Still untapped is the potential market of Muslim consumers, lagging far behind, not reached by the investors due to their reservation to consume only Halal products. There are more than 150 million Muslims in India, the third largest community in the world, which constitutes approximately 15 per cent of the total national population, with a larger youth ratio, spread out in all states of India. There are more than 50 per cent Muslim population in twenty districts, while 68 districts have more than 25 per cent Muslims. Most Muslims prefer to buy only HalalThe Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

Feature.indd 38

certified products. Furthermore, increasing awareness among Muslim consumers on their religious obligations in recent years is creating greater demand for Halal items. Larger share of younger Muslim population indicates the potentiality of stylish Halal brands in foodstuffs and other areas. It is pertinent to note that the introduction of Halal tag/ label on conventional products is not an identity campaign for Muslims but it serves to provide assurance to the Muslim consumers and to include them in the market of products that previously were not Halal-certified (i.e. to not leave them out due to their religious obligations). Besides, the domestic market, India is a major hub for export of meat and processed products to Muslim countries. Malaysia, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Jordan and Oman are among the top ten importers of Indian meat; UAE was a major importing destination for India’s export of processed food in the year 2008-09. Halal tagged products would attract the Muslim consumer base in international markets especially the Middle East and Arab region which are India’s major trade partner. The word ‘Halal’ is from the Arabic language, and is used for every lawful object and action in view of Islamic laws. In its literal broad meaning, it applies to all spheres of life activities including food, clothing, finance, personal care, and so on. But its meaning is commonly narrowed down to refer to only food, meat products and drinks. In India, the term Halal, when used to refer to food, is confined to nonvegetarian products prepared

In India, the term Halal, when used to refer to food, is confined to nonvegetarian products prepared using ingredients from animals slaughtered using the Islamic way (zabihah), and other food products that are free from alcohol and intoxicants.

38 7/26/10 8:49:23 AM

The products with vegetarian logo in India are by default permissible for consumption by Muslims, because these do not contain the aforementioned non-Halal elements.

using ingredients from animals slaughtered using the Islamic way (zabihah), and other food products that are free from alcohol and intoxicants. It is stated in the Quran: “O mankind! Eat of that which is lawful and wholesome, and follow not the footsteps of the devil. Lo! He is an avowed enemy of you.” (2:168) It is also stated in the Quran that all foods are considered Halal except the following: • Swine/ Pork and its by-products • Animals improperly slaughtered or dead before slaughtering • Alcoholic drinks and intoxicants • Carnivorous animals, birds of prey and certain other animals • Foods contaminated with any of the above products The problem in India is that there is no unanimous apex Shariah body/ Halal certification body like in the US, Malaysia, Indonesia, Brunei, Singapore, Thailand, and South Africa; every sect in India has its own Shariah body. However, a Muslim umbrella organisation such as All India Muslim Personal Law Board or Indian Fiqh Academy can be persuaded to establish one body to focus solely on Halal certification, and the certification at initial stage could be served by gathering a team of Islamic scholars. The products with vegetarian logo in India are by default permissible for consumption

by Muslims, because these do not contain the aforementioned non-Halal elements. NonHalal products like wine, pig and meat from animals not slaughtered using the Islamic way, if not mixed up with any sub-products, are excluded in the discussion of Halal certification due to their clear nature. Certification is basically necessary regarding the processed and contaminated products where the ambiguity of non-Halal ingredients is high due to change of state that may occur at chemical/ molecular level. Halal business can be initiated in several industries, but the potential sectors are as follows: • Meat and Poultry • Food Processing • Restaurants and Hotels • Beverage • Pharmaceuticals For specification, the study seeks to explore the Halal business potentialities in the Indian market of processed food items, beverages and other consumer products where high ambiguity exist in the method of manufacturing and mixing of Haram ingredients therein. Absence of clarity about Haram or Halal prevents Muslim consumers to consume the processed products. Because of this, Muslim consumers would definitely support the adoption of Halal methods and materials in manufacturing of processed products with the proper tagging of Halal certification.

Figure 1: India’s per capita income (1990-2009) Per Capita 4000


Income (Rs)

3500 3000


2500 2000




1000 500


0 1990-91






The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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7/26/10 8:49:29 AM

Table 1: Districts by Muslim population size and concentration in India (2001)

Muslim Population in the district Number of Districts

Percentage of Muslims in the total populations of the district

Number of Districts

1,000,000 or more 500,000 to 999,999 250,000 to 499,999 100,000 to 249,999 50,000 to 99,999 10,000 to 49,999 Less than 10,000

25 75 or more 51 50 or more but less than 75 104 25 or more but less than 50 125 10 or more but less than 25 87 5 or more but less than 10 95 1 or more but less than 5 106 Less than 1

9 11 38 182 129 147 77




It would not be amiss to mention herein about the possible risk associated by tagging of Halal on any wellestablished brand that may divert its existing customers in India where the majority believes to take only vegetarian foods. But it can be averted by keeping a separate window or brand within the organisation for Halal products. At the outset of any Halal product introduction in the Indian market, comprehensive study report about the profile of Muslims is essentially required to target the objective mass effectively. To get acquainted with a brief profile of the Muslim consumer, the economic, demographic, and educational background of consumers were examined for referencing by any prospective promoter of Halal products. The detailed market report can be designed according to anticipated products and industry. Indian Muslims make up 15 per cent in total consumer market according to their population, but keeping the constraint of their economic situation, it is assumed that Muslim consumers only make up 10 per cent in overall market. Most Muslim households have the middle level expenditure background. Distribution of Muslim households according to their average per capita expenditure potentialities are shown in Figures 2 and 3, separately for rural and urban areas so

that the promoter could be aware about the economic background of Muslim consumers for their product: The Muslim population reside in all states and districts of India. For the marketing of Halal products, identification of Muslim populated states/ districts is essential. In 2001, of the 138 million Muslims in India, 31 million or 22 per cent live in one state, Uttar Pradesh. Three other states, West Bengal, Bihar and Maharashtra also had over 10 million Muslims each. The majority of Muslims in India are in these four states. Apart from these states, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Jammu and Kashmir, and Karnataka have 5-10 million Muslims each; Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand and Tamil Nadu have 3-5 million each; and Delhi, Haryana and Uttaranchal have 1-2 million each. At the micro level planning of any product, districts have the pivotal role in administrative division of India. Table 1 shows the spatial distribution of Muslims across Indian districts. A majority of Muslims (64 per cent) live in rural areas due to agricultural occupation and only 34 per cent of the population prefers to live in urban areas. However, the urbanisation trend among Muslims is high in comparison to other communities over a period of time. Male and female ratio is quite stable among Muslims: 51.64 are

The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |


Figure 2: Estimated distribution of urban Muslim households according to annual per capita expenditure (Rs) in India (2004-2005)

1,700,875 (22%)

490,342 (6%)

1,700,875 (22%) 3,570,306 (47%)

490,342 (6%) 1,892,415 (25%)

Below 5,280



Above 19,561

3,570,306 (47%)

1,892,415 (25%)

Below 5,280



Above 19,561

1,469,474 (9%)

3,564,256 (23%)

Figure 3: Estimated distribution of rural Muslim households according to annual per capita expenditure (Rs) in India (2004-2005)

1,469,474 (9%) 5,018,097 (32%)

3,564,256 (23%) 5,580,874 (36%)

Below 4,110



Above 9,481

5,018,097 (32%)

5,580,874 (36%)

Below 4,110


5,791-9,480 3.55

Above 9,481


40 13.7

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7/26/10 8:49:39 AM


Table 3: Percentage distribution of Muslim workers aged 15-64 in India (2004-05)

Table 2: Age composition of the whole community (2001)

Age Group



0-4 5-9 10-19 1,700,875 (22%) 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-59 60-69 70+

17,389,297 20,259,808 33,719,115 22,271,342 17,458,765 11,857,363 6,950,629 4,942,277 3,007,046



13 15 24 490,342 (6%) 16 13 9 5 4 2

3,570,306 (47%)

100 1,892,415 (25%)

Below 5,280



Above 19,561

Occupational Categories




Professional, Technical and Related Work




Administrative, Executive and Managerial Work




Clerical and Related Work




Sales Workers




Service Workers Farmers, Fishermen, Hunters,




Loggers and Related Work Production and Related Workers,















male and 48.35 are female. The Muslim population consist of more youths and children, as reported in a 2001 census. Age composition of the whole community can be better visualised from Table 2. Muslim population is increasing with a high growth rate of 2.58, and projection shows that the size of India’s Muslim population would stabilise at about 320 million in 2030; and it may reach the figure of 340 million by 2041. Literacy percentage of Muslims is low in comparison to overall population. Population by educational level is depicted in Figure 4. Most Muslim workers in India are associated with self-employed agriculture and trade occupation and very few people opt for the service sector. Percentage of regular salaried persons among Muslims is less in comparison to other communities in India. Table 3 gives a clear picture about

the distribution of workers in different occupations which would definitely help in the decision of product choice/ nature for Muslim consumers. Traditional cottage and handicraft industries like brass industry in Moradabad, bangles in Ferozabad and carpets in Badohi are owned by Indian Muslims. To gauge the detailed market report of Muslim consumers in India for Halal products of any category, this researcher comes across several limitations in compiling the preliminary data due to the fact that much of the religion based information was not being released by official sources. Indirect assessment by selection of the Muslim populated districts can only assist in finding the real socioeconomic situation of Indian Muslims and in focusing on the real targeted masses.

Transport Equipment Operators and Labourers Workers not classified by

Indian Muslims make up 15 1,469,474 (9%) 3,564,256 (23%) per cent in total consumer market according to their population, but keeping the constraint of their economic situation, it is assumed that Muslim consumers only make up 10 per cent in overall market. 5,018,097 (32%)

5,580,874 (36%)

Below 4,110



Above 9,481

Figure 4: Education level of Muslims above 15 years old (2004-05)

3.55 39.4 13.7 43.3

Not literate Literate up to Higher Secondary Literate below Secondary Graduate & Above


**Note about author: Shafeeq ur Rahman, post graduate in Economics and Islamic Studies, is a professional researcher working with leading data provider company and holds corporate research experience of more than seven years on India centric databases. His core interest areas are writing on socio economic issues of Muslims, Islamic Economics & Finance and Indian economy. Presently, he is doing PhD on Islamic Economics Thoughts from Jamia Millia Islamia University, New Delhi. The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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7/26/10 8:49:45 AM

Can we be Halal in parts?

The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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Words by Radha Vengadasalam

42 7/26/10 8:49:58 AM

If a man beats his wife or does not provide for her, but still wins the ‘Father of the Year’ award

as he is nice to the kids, can we accept that? Wouldn’t we be up in arms? If a company never pays its suppliers or staff in a timely manner or just tries any convoluted way to escape paying, but then spends millions on Corporate

Social Responsibility (CSR) projects; can The primary responsibility of any corporate body is to its staff or personnel, then to its customers and suppliers and then to society in the realms of where the corporate operates.

we seriously with full conscience award it a CSR award? Will that be defensible? How about those who win Halal-related personality or innovation awards or six of these and half a dozen of the other but don’t pay their creditors or have dubious business practices? Is that then acceptable? Sound too farfetched? Really? Recent times have seen an explosion of awards giving accolades to a plethora of categories, some legitimate and some just beyond a joke. Some are just paid awards; you donate and you get them. Some seek to publicise the giving party rather than the recipients. Some are mere fund-raising exercises. I have watched in amusement the different ever growing categories of awards, and the recipients, and wonder in bewilderment on the criteria and qualification of both those who are giving and the recipients. As we grow into a more caring and just society, maybe we need to re-evaluate how we celebrate innovation and achievement. Without us realising, sometimes we do seem to celebrate mediocrity. A culture of accepting second best, or recognising those who are paid to do just that, has devalued many awards and accolades. Having said that, I suppose,

if someone who is unsavoury wins the ‘CEO of the Year’ award or ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ award, we cannot really sit and pass judgment; as some might say being unsavoury or devoid of ethics and “succeed at all costs” attitude is perhaps what is needed to be a successful CEO or Company. Maybe not delivering to your customers, not paying suppliers, running away from the tax man are indeed essential criteria to make your company successful. I do not subscribe to that ethos but maybe others may judge it differently. However, other awards just don’t make sense. How on earth can anyone justify giving awards to those who have no idea what it is all about in the first place? Take the Corporate Social Responsibility or CSR for example. I believe this is the most misunderstood term in the corporate world as well as society at large. CSR is not donation, but for many it is just that; donation by another term but worth its weight in gold to be milked to the fullest. My beef about this is not only on the understanding of the term but also the totally ineligibility of the application of both practice as well as accolades. The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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7/26/10 8:50:04 AM

This is mankind altering divine rules to suit their needs. Isn’t it absolutely ridiculous to grade a company as Halal if they deal with 4.999999999% in pork? CSR begins at ‘home’. The primary responsibility of any corporate body is to its staff or personnel, then to its customers and suppliers and then to society in the realms of where the corporate operates. If you are a developer, and have taken the down payment but have not finished the homes in the agreed time, or are not even remotely close to completing the houses, but you then donate RM1,000,000 to some charity in an area that you do not even operate, that is not CSR. That is not even donation but Public Relations (PR). Then, another obscure body whom no one has heard of will come forward and awards the Chairman the ‘CSR of the Year’ award and everyone else buys tables for a gala dinner, claps all around, be merry and go home. Plantations cannot just devour hills in their way, chase the inhabitants out with their greater financial muscling, not provide adequate sanitation, and then send a ship to those starving in Ethiopia and think they are champions of CSR. That is ridiculous! Awarding someone who epitomises none of the spirit of CSR is an insult to those who know what it is and apply it. Staff comes first. All successful organisations came about due to their staff; no amount of CEO ingenuity alone can make it happen. Of course, the drive and vision from the founder is paramount, but so is the commitment and sweat of its staff. Of course, I am also not a fan of those who do not work hard or just cannot deliver what they are paid for. It is also wrong to just sit by not doing anything while some staff is not performing as this will affect the morale of the others who are working. Companies must ensure that customers are treated well, give them what they have paid for. Readily admit your fault and make good whatever wrong that has been done. It is alright to lose a couple of thousands or millions in profit but come out of any situation smelling of roses as that is invaluable and the goodwill generated will be worth billions. Corporations are duty and morally bound to do the right thing as espoused by the spirit The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

Feature.indd 44

of CSR, i.e. behaving in a responsible manner in the places they operate. Society must celebrate and showcase good corporate behaviour. Caring for staff, ethical and fair dealings with customers, pay suppliers on time, look after the environment, be socially responsible, morally upstanding. Other companies must look at them and say “Yup, that’s how I want to be when my company grows up”. Those who hold themselves as whiter than white as an expert in Halal and advise people on how to behave and organise their business but then don’t practice themselves in just getting their fee paid but not finishing their work as paid for or delivering inferior slipshod work cannot be showcased as a leader. How can you take money but don’t deliver what been promised or come out with million excuses all the time. Is that Halal? If a bank which deals only in Shariah-compliant products and instruments, but then uses underhanded manners in all other manner of operations, such as loan recovery, one-sided documentation, undesirable corporate behaviour; can we look up to them and say they epitomise the spirit of Halal? Talking about banks, I was told that in some jurisdiction, the qualification to be categorised as a Shariah-compliant company is that 95 per cent of your products or services are Halal. I found that to be absolutely mind-boggling. This is mankind altering divine rules to suit their needs. Isn’t it absolutely ridiculous to grade a company as Halal if they deal with 4.999999999 per cent pork? If a manufacturer who qualifies for all the criteria of Halal certification but arrives at that by using illegal oppressed workers using illegally obtained money as well as totally

unethical business dealing, is it really Halal to give the body a Halal certification? I do not think so, and society must not accept this. Halal carries a deeper meaning as it is religious in nature and mankind cannot make exceptions. We cannot bend the philosophy a bit just because it is convenient. If it cannot be certified or does not qualify, we should not make them eligible by bending the rules a bit. We have become more discerning now, more spiritually inclined and more aware and demand a wholesome approach to everything we do, not just a quick fix. Like how some countries build highways, they merely transport the bottleneck to another area without really seriously solving anything. The time therefore has come, for the acceptance of a concept of a ‘wholesome’ Halal citizen, may it be individual or body corporate or a society. Everything they preach or practice must be scrutinised. This is to ensure the awarding of sectionalised or category type Halal awards does not become meaningless, and worst still, lead to unsuitable recipients being honoured when they have no right to receive such accolades. The demand is already there, it is just that we probably are not aware of how to proceed with that demand or what to do next. We must slowly but surely move towards identifying, measuring and certifying based on wholesome Halal concept. By this I refer to whatever they talk and practice – everything has to be Halal. We don’t have to reinvent the wheel; most of the measuring tools are already available. We just need to coordinate, deliberate and roll them out. hj

44 7/26/10 8:50:10 AM

AD Halalinvest.indd 1

2/24/10 10:54:04 PM

An Exclusive Interview

Tirelessly promoting Malaysian Halal products & services

Words by Ruzanna Muhammad

Heading the Products and Services Development Division of the Malaysian External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) is director, Wan Norma Wan Daud. Under her leadership and a well organised team, the division has flourished with many successful programmes amidst many obstacles faced. Wan Norma shares her experience and challenges, and her views on local manufacturers in this exclusive interview. Can you share your experience over the past three years since you headed the division? MATRADE’s initiatives don’t differ much from previous years. We still carry out promotional activities for various sectors or products, focusing on the Halal sector. We promote Halal with our International Halal Showcase (MIHAS) which is a platform to promote Malaysian Halal products and services. We have also been focusing on promotional activities in the ASEAN and the Middle Eastern market. The promotional programmes in other markets are ongoing, and sometimes, we also leverage on MATRADE’s other promotional programmes, such as food exhibitions. We participate, every year, in 20-30 exhibitions globally. At these food exhibitions, we take the opportunity to promote Malaysian Halal food manufacturers. So we promote the Malaysian Halal sector by leveraging on other promotional programmes available with MATRADE. Last year, for example, when we participated in ANUGA in Köln, Germany, we prominently showcased Halal even though ANUGA is actually not a Halal exhibition, but covers all industries such as food and beverage (F&B), cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. So we are not just focusing on Muslim markets such as Indonesia, or the Middle East, but are also covering other Muslim minority markets. Apart from that, we also organise awareness seminars, which we normally do in conjunction with promoting MIHAS. The idea is to promote MIHAS and to create awareness on the Halal sector. The understanding of people, generally, on Halal is mostly food-related. Through these seminars, we are able to really explain to people what Halal is. We also encourage them to participate at MIHAS and to source Halal products from Malaysia. So that is very important in encouraging buy-ins and investments into Malaysia. We also conduct many outreach programmes for the Malaysian manufacturers especially companies interested in manufacturing and exporting Halal products. This is where we provide our advisory capabilities to these people where we explain what Halal is, which market to go into, and the requirements to access markets of interest. It is the whole spectrum of nurturing exporters as

The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

Feature.indd 46

well as providing information to our trade offices worldwide. For our trade offices, we also provide information on Malaysia companies that are open to export markets or even to the extent of updating them about new local products that are now out in the market for export. We also arrange in store promotions, i.e. promotions in supermarkets. For example, we conducted one in an up-market supermarket in Surabaya, Indonesia that has been carrying Malaysian Halal products. Every year, we will do in-store promotion with them before the fasting month where the supermarket will carry out a programme to highlight all Malaysian Halal products at the supermarket, running it throughout the

whole fasting month. Promotion activities are costly, so because of the budget constraints, we will try to look at the most effective programmes we can do. Of course, our trade commissioners stationed in other countries will continuously be promoting this sector, which is an advantage MATRADE has, to ensure continuity in terms of promotions in other parts of the world. We may only be able to go in promotion once, but what is more important is that you can sustain in the market. So this is where our trade offices overseas can play a role, which is to continuously promote our local products to buyers and distributors in that country. Many still do not see the whole spectrum of the Halal sector, and with these smaller

“But more often that not, our food manufacturers cannot meet the various regulations and fees set for displaying products in mainstream supermarkets.”

46 7/26/10 8:50:21 AM

and targeted awareness programmes, they open the minds of people in terms of knowledge of Halal. How has awareness grown since the past three years in terms of participation of local companies with MATRADE’s promotional programmes overseas? When we actually do plan to participate in foodrelated exhibitions, we always have a waiting list of companies wanting to join the MATRADE pavilion at a particular event. We have been bringing local companies to over 20-30 food exhibitions per year, and response from local companies who want to participate has always been overwhelming, growing in numbers every year. Response has been good and we could say that 90 per cent of our export of food products is Halal. When you said information dissemination, what sort of information do you refer to? Information on market access and potential. Our trade officers overseas will conduct studies on product markets. We will then channel this information to our local private sectors, companies and exporters; they can access this information from our web portal. Sometimes, we also get interested parties who want to go into a certain market, and we will link them to our trade office in that particular country they’re interested in. Our trade office will then provide them with the necessary information requested. Of course on standards and regulations, it is not on Halal only, but also related to international standards such as HACCP, GMP or any other standard regulations that needs to be fulfilled. What are the major challenges faced when it comes to your division’s programmes? Financial constraints and manpower. Our division does not only focus on Halal, we are responsible for other sectors as well. So in certain programmes, we do not have enough manpower. The real challenge is to get the message across to as many people as you can, and nothing is as effective as interacting with them. Even with our trade offices, they are also constrained by financials when it comes to organising seminars, and so on. So we cannot do as many as we want to. MIHAS is well-known because, to a certain extent, of the promotion work we did with our programmes. But still, it is insufficient. Getting local companies to participate in MIHAS is not a problem; the challenge is getting foreign companies to participate. Because we position MIHAS as an international event, so the components from overseas must come in. We target the big players to participate and make an impact at MIHAS. Another challenge is on certification issues, mainly in terms of recognition, and because there is no uniformity in terms of Halal standards. When we promote MIHAS, we get many companies interested, but certain companies cannot participate because they are not Halal-certified because their country does not have a proper Halal certification

system or their Halal certificate is not recognised by JAKIM. So, this is actually a challenge when it comes to getting international participants. What are the challenges of promoting Malaysian products overseas? As far as promoting Malaysian products, that is a non-issue. For me the challenge is in promoting MIHAS, where it is difficult to get companies producing Halal products to participate. Not because they are not interested, but because they do not have a proper, recognised Halal certification body/ system. MIHAS is very strict in ensuring products showcased at the event are Halal-certified, as to protect the integrity of the event. Promoting Malaysian products overseas with our Halal standard in place, the challenge is for us to go into the mainstream supermarkets. It’s always difficult to go into the mainstream supermarkets with all the restrictions and constraints due to protocols. So would you say that one of the problems is that we lack compliance to the standards and regulations of the specific country? It is not an issue of compliance to international manufacturing standards, because the fact that we can enter means we are already compliant. But entry into a mainstream supermarket involves many protocols, rules and regulations. Entry into the market is gained when you meet the requirements. But more often that not, our food manufacturers cannot meet the various regulations and fees set for displaying products in mainstream supermarkets. This is usually the case with Western countries, but if you talk about Middle Eastern countries, our products are already in the mainstream supermarkets. So you must look at different markets because the regulations and requirements differ from one market to the next. What is your message to local manufacturers

who want to go into Halal and want to export? To me, for those who want to go into Halal, the potential is definitely there. But the Halal products must be of a certain quality and standard. And the requirement and preference of the country must also be known. They must really invest in promotion otherwise their products won’t go anywhere. Another important thing is market intelligence and information. We provide a lot of information, just contact us, ask us and we will try to get the information through out trade offices worldwide. Most SMEs do not really have the relevant information. If you have the market information, then you are more knowledgeable and are able to understand the market before you enter. Research and development is also very important; you have to innovate and be creative when coming up with new products. Malaysia has been organising many events. What do you think of events in terms of promoting Halal and creating awareness? What is your message to event organisers? I think it is a good move in a sense that everybody is doing their bit. Just make sure that the event you do really brings value in terms of the agenda that you are promoting, and in this case Halal. When you organise an event, it must be sustainable and should grow from strength to strength. As far as MIHAS is concerned, we have positioned MIHAS as an international Halal trade show, and we are able to prove it through our organisation, participation and our ability to bring in buyers. For event organisers, I would say that they must be very sure of who their target group is, what they want to achieve and how they can sustain the event in the years to come. For example, if you want to make it an international exhibition, you must prove that you are able to bring in many people or traders from overseas. hj

The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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7/26/10 8:50:26 AM


Asia •• OIC International Business Centre: Fostering growth of intra-OIC trade The OIC International Business Centre Sdn Bhd was formed in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in 2003, when Ramcel Media was appointed as the Official Publisher in Conjunction with the 10th OIC Summit 2003 in Putrajaya to publish the Official OIC Trade Directory. Since then, the company has published many OIC publications and among the most viewed is the OIC Today magazine. Dato’ Dr. Raja Mohamed Abdullah is the CEO of OIC International Business Centre. He is also the deputy president for the Kuala Lumpur branch of the Malaysian Islamic Chamber of Commerce and also one of its founding members. Here, he talks to The Halal Journal about the role of OIC International Business Centre in providing information on the trade and economic opportunities available in the OIC countries to promote intra-trade, and the achievements made thus far.

As a publisher of OIC (Organisation of the Islamic Conference) publications, what in your opinion are the roles of a Muslim/ Islamic media in the current state of the world today? As a publisher of business and economic magazines, I think that today Islamic countries are deprived in terms of information. The most important thing for a country to be advanced is that information has to be provided so that other countries can carry out economic trade with them. And that’s a major obstacle – that Islamic countries today are deprived in terms of information. Malaysia, especially OIC International Business Centre, has taken a leading role in providing economic information on Islamic countries. OIC International Business Centre should not be the only one responsible; all of the Islamic world should be more responsible in providing economic information on Islamic countries. When you go to any of the bookshops today, the number of magazines talking about the Western economy is tremendous. But not many The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

FasTrack.indd 48

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would be talking about the Islamic economy. The media in the Islamic world should be much more proactive and committed to take a leading role in giving the right information on the Islamic world, not just confined to talking about political issues. They should explore economic issues more. Can you please briefly explain the reason behind the creation of the OIC International Business Centre, as well as why it was chosen to be located here in Malaysia? OIC International Business Centre is a Malaysian-based business centre. When Malaysia took over the OIC chairmanship in 2003, I was appointed to see how to increase inter-trade. So we came up with a company for that specific purpose. We also formed the Malaysian OIC Trade Chamber. So this company is focused towards seeing that OIC countries increase intra-trade. I think that the OIC countries are comfortable with Malaysian culture and the political stability here. Malaysia is also more liberal. So I think that the only country today that can speak for the Islamic world is Malaysia. Our first Prime Minister, Tunku Abdul Rahman, was instrumental in the OIC. He was the first one to call for an Islamic Conference in 1969 over the Palestine issue. He was also appointed as the first Secretary General of the OIC. So even our first Prime Minister was already involved in Islamic interests, and Malaysia from 1969 was already a major global Islamic player, and has continued from there. Tun Mahathir

has also done some serious rebranding such as talking about the gold dinar and calling for Islamic countries to play a greater role globally, followed by Tun Abdullah Badawi and now Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Razak. Malaysia wants to see Muslims worldwide have a better living standard. The OIC Summit in 2003 allowed for a serious look at the OIC body, and today Malaysia has transformed the OIC paradigm. What are the aims and achievements of the OIC International Business Centre so far? We know very well that Islamic countries are rich in resources and commodities but the intra-trade between them is not vibrant. So when Malaysia took over the chairmanship of the OIC in 2003, we wanted to tell the whole world that it’s high time for Islamic countries to increase the intra-trade among them. The total world Muslim population is about two billion. The population of the OIC countries is 1.6 to 1.7 billion. Based on the population of the OIC countries, 60 per cent of the OIC countries are still a very poor ummah who live on USD1 to 2 a day. So we want to rebrand OIC countries into a stronger economic power. The whole thing can take place only when someone takes a strong leading role. In 2003, we were the first to publish the official OIC trade directory, which we launched and gave free distribution to all OIC countries. In it we gave trade facts on 57 OIC countries. That gave them the upper hand necessary to increase intra-trade. So the role of the OIC International Business Centre is mainly

“From 2003 to today, there has been an increment of 10 per cent in the intra-trade between OIC countries. That means OIC International Business Centre has made a serious rebranding of OIC from a mainly political body into an economic body.”

to provide information to Islamic countries in terms of education, tourism, oil and gas, trade, Islamic banking and others to assist Islamic countries to aggressively increase intratrade and decrease poverty. The intra-trade among the OIC countries in 2003 was only seven per cent. When Malaysia took over the chairmanship and tried to change that, today the intra-trade is 17 per cent. From 2003 to today, there has been an increment of 10 per cent in the intra-trade between OIC countries. That means OIC International Business Centre has made a serious rebranding of OIC from a mainly political body into an economic body. So we made a serious transformation by providing information. We also have several publications such as OIC Trade, OIC Oil and Gas and OIC Education. All the products have

one single objective – to increase intra-trade among OIC countries and share expertise. We also organise conferences, expos and trade fairs, such as the Muslims BIG (Business & Investment Gala) in June this year. What are the future plans for the OIC International Business Centre? OIC International is doing a lot of international business and we’re trying to persuade other OIC countries to have an organisation similar to OIC International Business Centre and to pool their strength together. We hope to set up the OIC International Business Centre in every OIC country, and an International Islamic, Economic & Investment Centre in Malaysia so that Malaysia becomes the nerve centre of the Islamic economy. The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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fastrack 01. David Leung, South & South East Asia Regional Director, Hong Kong Tourism Board. 02. David talked about the updated Halal restaurant list available on 03. Participants of the “Hong Kong for Muslims” Workshop held at Park Royal Hotel in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.





There are 60,000 Muslims residing in Hong Kong today; of which 30-35 per cent are from Pakistan, and 30 per cent Chinese Muslims who emigrated from China. This resident population excludes the 120,000 domestic helpers from Indonesia.

Asia •• Accommodating Muslims in Hong Kong Hong Kong’s Chief Imam, Mufti Muhammad Arshad, has assured 180 travel agents who attended the recent “Hong Kong for Muslims” Workshop held in Kuala Lumpur that more is being done to welcome Muslim visitors to Hong Kong. Presently, there are 50 Halal-certified companies The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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in Hong Kong, of which 25 are restaurants. The Incorporated Trustees of the Islamic Community Fund of Hong Kong (Board of Trustees) – Hong Kong’s regulatory body on Halal certification – is looking at increasing the number of certified companies with efforts to promote greater

awareness on attaining such certifications, Mufti Muhammad Arshad said. “Unlike Malaysia, we do not have the JAKIMlike authority to enforce on the law. However, Imams will run random checks at restaurants to ensure that they are abiding by the rules of being a Halal outlet,” he said.

In Hong Kong, there are two different Halal certifications – Halal restaurant certificate and Halal food certificate. The Halal restaurant certificate is the stricter of the two. Such restaurants meet all essence of Halal as they do not serve alcoholic drinks or place effigies or other religious statues

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within their premises. However, the Halal food certificate is conferred to restaurants which just meet the food criteria but serve alcoholic drinks or beer. “Upon issuance of the Halal certificate by the Board of Trustees, the food outlet may apply for a Halal application from the mosque where the Imam would attest the certification,” Mufti Muhammad Arshad added. To locate Halal restaurants in Hong Kong, visitors need only to visit www.DiscoverHongKong. com which lists Halal restaurants with their locations. “We work closely with the Imams in Hong Kong to update, on an annual basis, the list of Halal restaurants or food outlets available at www.,”

JAKIM approved Halal Journal 2010 def outlines.indd 1

says Hong Kong Tourism Board’s (HKTB) South & Southeast Asia regional director, David Leung. Hong Kong remains a preferred destination for tourists from Malaysia, Indonesia and the Middle East, with a major surge in arrivals in the January to April period this year. Data from the Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) for April 2010 shows that tourists from Malaysia to Hong Kong increased 10.2 per cent year-onyear (y-o-y), while those from Indonesia surged 28 per cent y-o-y, and from the Middle East 22.7 per cent y-o-y within the January to April period. These figures indicate a tremendous increase of Muslims visiting Hong Kong, the Pearl of the Orient. Adding to Hong Kong’s

appeal to Muslims is its five mosques. Among them, the Kowloon Mosque and Islamic Centre – located in Tsim Sha Tsui, and the Masjid Ammar and Osman Ramju Sadick Islamic Centre in Wan Chai, which are both located within walking distance from various hotels in Kowloon and Hong Kong. According to Ramjahn Abdool Shakoor, a guest speaker at the “Hong Kong for Muslims” Workshop, there are 60,000 Muslims residing in Hong Kong today; of which 30-35 per cent are from Pakistan, and 30 per cent Chinese Muslims who emigrated from China. This resident population excludes the 120,000 domestic helpers from Indonesia. The workshop was jointly

organised by Uni Asia Tours (HK) and supported by HKTB, Cathay Pacific Airways and eight other participants including Hong Kong Disneyland, Ocean Park, Ngong Ping 360 and hospitality service providers. While travelling to Hong Kong, Cathay Pacific – Hong Kong’s national carrier – gives Muslim travellers the option to request for Halal food, specially prepared from their Halal kitchen. Currently, Cathay Pacific offers three flights daily to Hong Kong from Kuala Lumpur and one flight from Penang. Additionally, the airline’s affiliate, Dragon Air, offers five flights a week to Hong Kong from Kota Kinabalu.

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Asia •• HDC launched guide book for food producers & iPhone Apps On 23 June 2010, the Halal Industry Development Corporation (HDC) launched its Halal guide book for food producers at the opening of the 7th International Halal Showcase (MIHAS), followed by the official launch of HDC’s iPhone Apps at the 3rd World Halal Research Summit dinner that night.

The Guide Book HDC’s “Halal Guide Book: Guide for Food Producers” provides detailed guidelines and checklists for any company or business concern aspiring to work towards meeting the Halal certification and standards by JAKIM (Department of Islamic Development Malaysia). Published last month by HDC, the first 180 books were quickly snapped up by interested players in the Halal industry during the Northern Halal Carnival held in May this year. “The HDC is strongly convinced that such a guide book will bring about greater understanding of the Halal concept, and support JAKIM’s effort to move ahead with its certification facility,” explained Dato’ Seri Jamil Bidin, Chief Executive Officer of HDC. Published in two languages – English and Bahasa Malaysia – the much-awaited book was launched by the Malaysian Prime Minister, Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Abdul Razak, at a special ceremony in conjunction with MIHAS 2010. “The Halal Guide Book is based on the foundation of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP). The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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This is a first of its kind and will be widely welcomed as a reference point for food producers to access valuable Halal information and gain the due verification process regarding the company’s Halal status,” added Jamil. Fully endorsed by JAKIM, the book is an example of cross ministerial collaboration, whereby both the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) and the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) agencies work hand in hand to attain Malaysia’s aspiration of being a global Halal hub. The iPhone Applications The HDC iPhone Applications took centre stage at this year’s World Halal Research Summit, providing innovative assurance to Muslims in search of products that are JAKIM-certified and restaurants that are Halal-compliant. The highly convenient Halal application essentially offers three modules that dispense Halal information in a timely and relevant manner. 1. The “locator” enables easy locating of places to eat that are Halalcertified within a 15-kilometre radius. 2. The “directory” provides a comprehensive listing of companies with

related details that aim to encourage business matching worldwide. This directory functions as a stand-alone and provides impetus to a growing Halal industry where industry players can network and grow new bases of Halal information. 3. “News & Knowledge” provides users with a mounting volume of information, current news and knowledge. Users are treated to updates from the HDC “Knowledge Centre.” Updates are fulfilled fortnightly in consultation with JAKIM’s panel meeting on Halal certification. “We recognise the prevalent demand for mobile internet services in Malaysia, a trend that is largely driven by the increased usage of Smartphones, including the iPhone. This market trend and the availability of the Halal apps presents an opportunity for us to deliver on our value proposition, and to provide relevant, simple and innovative services to meet the needs of a large segment of Malaysian customers,” said Zaiton Idrus, director of DiGi’s Corporate Affairs Division. The Halal apps first made its debut in February this year on TV3’s popular

programme, Malaysia Hari Ini. Its ensuing milestone development includes its launch in Apple iTunes store, where 4,937 downloads were recorded by global users after only three weeks. By May 2010, the figure swelled to approximately 15,000 on the domestic front. This figure is expected to expand by 20-30 per cent by 2011. To maximise global outreach, HDC has enhanced its relationship with DiGi, an authorised dealer of iPhones that aims to promote and brand the Halal Malaysia concept, while JAKIM is the owner of the names of Halal certified companies and products. “We are indeed very gratified to be associated with the Halal industry through the iPhone application, especially in light of HDC’s mission to uplift the notion of Halal as not being only a religious concern. There is shared synergy between the preferred lifestyle of high quality, safety and assurance and smart technology. The iPhone has undoubtedly become the high point for Malaysia as it aims to promote the Halal industry in the eyes of the world,” said Jamil.

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5/5/10 6:02:40 PM

country in focus

Words by Dayana Nordin

Japan: An absolute wonderland


apan is an absolute wonderland. You will find natural wonders the length and breadth of the country, as well as futuristic cities with lightning-speed trains and infinite cultural treasures. No doubt you have come across Japan being amongst the highly ranked on any world’s top lists, such as World’s Top Economies, World’s Best Technological Advancement, World’s Most Populated Cities, World’s Largest Stock Exchange, World’s Highest Mountains and even World’s Highest Number Of Vending Machines In A City (Tokyo itself has six million of them!). Thus, it is no wonder that Japan is a favourite tourist destination and also one of the easiest countries in which to travel. Japan lies to the east of Russia, China, North Korea and South Korea, and is sometimes referred to as the “Land of the Rising Sun”. Japan is made up of 6,853 islands extending along the Pacific coast of Asia. The four main islands – Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku, which account for 97 per cent of the country’s land area – and the Ryukyu Islands, make up the Japanese archipelago. About 80 per cent The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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of Japan is mountainous, forested and unsuitable for agricultural, industrial or residential use. The generally steep elevations, climate and risk of landslides caused by earthquakes, heavy rain and soft ground resulted in extremely high population densities in the habitable zones that are located mainly in coastal areas. Its capital city is Tokyo and other main cities include Yokohama, Osaka, Nagoya, Sapporo, Kobe, Kyoto and Fukuoka. One of its main attractions, Mount Fuji, is recorded at 3,776 metres above sea level and visited all year round. 660 B.C. is the traditional date of the founding of the Japanese nation by Emperor Jimmu and was first recognised by Emperor Meiji in 1873. Japan operates as a constitutional monarchy where the

power of the Emperor is defined by the constitution as the “symbol of the state and of the unity of people”. Japan’s government is a parliamentary democracy, with a House of Representatives and a House of Councillors. Executive power is vested in a Cabinet composed of a prime minister and ministers of state, all of whom must be civilians. The prime minister has the power to appoint and remove ministers, a majority of whom must be members of the National Diet of Japan. The judiciary is independent. Population Currently, Japan has about 128 million people, making it the tenth most populated country in the world according to a census this year. The society in Japan is

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Photos by 01 - Anouar Aziouzi | 02, 06 - Dan Price | 03 - Yoichiro Nishimura | 04 - Akiko da Silva | 05 - Clint Rankin | 07 - Leea Gilmour | 08 - Diego Molla | 09 - Saphrix |

linguistically and culturally homogenous with small populations of foreign workers. The most dominant native ethnic group is the Yamato people, while the primary minority groups include the indigenous Ainu, Ryukyuan and Burakumin. Other minorities in Japan include Zainichi Koreans, Zainichi Chinese, Filipinos, Japanese Brazilians and Japanese Peruvians. Shintoism is the major religion in Japan with followers of about 84 per cent of the population. Buddhism follows this with over 71 per cent, Christianity with around two per cent, and more than seven per cent make up other religions. Total adherents exceed 100 per cent due to many people belonging to both Shintoism and Buddhism. However, these estimates are based on people with an association with a temple rather than the number of people truly following the religion. Although Japan has one of the highest life expectancy rates in the world, at 82.17 years as of last year, the population is rapidly ageing due to the effect of post-war baby





01 Tokyo’s sunset from Shinjuku Prince Hotel: Shinjuku’s Towers 02 Sagano Pathway - a pathway in Sagano, a village area of Kyoto 03 Night view at Shibuya, Tokyo 04 20-year olds Ceremony - Young women celebrate reaching Twenty at a New Year ceremony called Seijinshiki 05 Matsumotojo’s castle tower and smaller, second turret were built from 1592 to 1614 and were both well defended, as peace was not yet fully secured at the time. In 1635, when no more military threats existed, a third, barely defended turret for moon viewing was added to the castle 06 A street in Shinjuku, Tokyo 07 Market in Tokyo - The avenue leading to the Sen-soji Temple in Tokyo. It’s lined with market type stalls 08 Potato landscape - landscape showing a field of sweet potatoes in full bloom, Hokkaido

boom followed by a decrease in births in the latter part of the twentieth century. About 22.6 per cent of the population is over the age of 65 in 2009. Population of Japan is not uniformly distributed within the country and the density is very high in the coastal plains. Tokyo has the largest metropolitan area in the world with over 30 million residents and density of 13,000 persons per sq km. The high urbanisation in Japan is attributed to the lack of land for agriculture in the country and large-scale industrialisation. Economy In the years following World War II, government-industry cooperation, a strong work ethic, mastery of high technology, and The Halal Journal | July+Aug 2010 |

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country in focus



a comparatively small defence allocation helped Japan develop a technologically advanced economy. Today, measured on a purchasing power parity (PPP) of approximately USD4.14 trillion, Japan is the third-largest economy in the world after the US and China; measured by official exchange rates, however, Japan is the second largest economy in the world behind the US. Japan’s gross domestic product (GDP) in 2009 was estimated at about USD5.049 trillion. Japan’s economy is based on industrialised, freemarket economy and it is highly efficient and competitive in areas linked to international trade, although productivity is far lower in protected areas such as agriculture, distribution, and services. Japan’s reservoir of industrial leadership and technicians, well-educated and industrious work force, high savings and investment rates, and intensive promotion of industrial development and foreign trade, produced a mature industrial economy. Japan has few natural resources, and trade helps it earn the foreign exchange needed to purchase raw materials for its economy. Japan’s industrial sector is heavily dependent on imported raw materials and fuels. A tiny agriculture sector is highly subsidised and protected, with crop yields among the highest in the world. Usually selfsufficient in rice, Japan imports about 60 per cent of its food. Japan maintains one of the world’s largest fishing fleets and accounts for nearly 15 per cent of the global catch. For three decades, overall real economic growth had been spectacular – a 10 per cent average in the 1960s, a five per cent average in the 1970s, and a four per cent average in the 1980s. Growth slowed markedly in the 1990s, averaging The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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just 1.7 per cent, largely because of the after effects of inefficient investment and an asset price bubble in the late 1980s that required a protracted period of time for firms to reduce excess debt, capital, and labour. In October 2007, Japan’s longest post-war period of economic expansion ended after 69 months and Japan entered into recession in 2008, with 2009 marking a return to near zero per cent interest rates. Debate continues on the role of and effects of reform in restructuring the economy and funding to stimulate consumption in the face of a tight fiscal situation. Japan’s huge government debt, estimated to have reached 192 percent of GDP in 2009, and an aging and shrinking population are two major long-run problems. Culture The culture of Japan has evolved greatly over the past millennia, from the country’s prehistoric Jõmon period to its current contemporary hybrid culture, which combines influences from Asia, Europe and North

America. Japan has a fascinating and multifaceted culture; on the one hand it is steeped in the deepest of traditions dating back thousands of years, and on the other, it is a society in a constant state of rapid flux with continually shifting trends and technological development that constantly pushes back the boundaries of the possible. Japan is a country of stark contradictions, and in part, this is what makes it such a fascinating country to visit and a unique tourist destination. Manners and customs are an important part of many facets of Japanese life. The Japanese language, although basically quite simple to pronounce and speak, is made very difficult to master because of the codified layers of respect and humility that are used depending on whom you are talking to. Japan’s traditional form of clothing that distinguishes it from others is called the kimono. There are different types of kimonos for men and women and they are usually worn on special occasions. The style of kimono also changes with the season. Japanese art has a long history and covers a wide range of art

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Japan maintains one of the world’s largest fishing fleets and accounts for nearly 15 per cent of the global catch. For three decades, overall real economic growth had been spectacular – a 10 per cent average in the 1960s, a five per cent average in the 1970s, and a four per cent average in the 1980s. 09 Kodomo no hi [Children’s Day] - Festival celebrated as part of Golden Week in Japan on 5th May 10 Kobe’s central mosque 11 A mosque in Tokyo

styles and media, including visual arts such as ancient pottery, sculpture in wood and bronze, ink painting on silk and paper and more recently Manga (Japanese animation) and cartoon, along with a myriad of other types of works of art. A remarkable number of the traditional forms of Japanese music, dance, and theatre have survived in the contemporary world, enjoying some popularity through reidentification with Japanese cultural values. Traditional music and dance, which trace their origins to ancient religious use of Buddhist, Shintõ and folk, have been preserved in the dramatic performances of Noh, Kabuki, and bunraku theater. Geisha, meaning person of the arts are traditional Japanese artist-entertainers who were very common in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and are still in existence today, although their numbers are dwindling. Their skills include performing various Japanese arts such as classical music and dance. Although rice consumption in Japanese households is declining, rice is a staple of the Japanese

diet. Japanese cuisine is mainly composed of miso soup, fish, seafood, rice or noodles and soybeans, and dishes such as sushi, yakitori, tempura, and teriyaki are some of the foods that are commonly known in Japan. Western and Oriental foods are also widely available and popular in Japan. Sports is also a big deal in Japan and surprisingly, the most popular sport in Japan is not Japanese at all, it is professional baseball which was brought to Japan in 1873. Other popular sports are martial arts such as jujitsu, judo and kendo, football (soccer), motorsports, and of course, Sumo wrestling. In Sumo, the basic idea is for the higashi rikishi (east wrestler) to force his nishi (west) foe out of the ring or onto the floor of the dohyo (ring). It is generally all over in a few seconds but there is immense skill and artistry in the wrestlers’ moves. There are six tournaments (basho) a year and it is well worth a visit. Islam in Japan Japan’s first diplomatic relations with a Muslim country began

at the end of the 19th century with the arrival of Japanese emissaries to the Ottoman government. Torajiro Yamada and Osotora Noda went to Istanbul in 1892 and taught Japanese to the Turkish army officials upon the request of the Sultan. They later embraced Islam and became the first ever Muslim Japanese. Then during the RussoJapanese war (1904-5) almost 5,000 Tartar Muslim captives were accommodated in various detention camps in Japan. They were estimated at less than 600 in 1938 for Japan proper, a few thousand on the continent. Some Japanese converted to Islam through the contact with these Muslims and thus began the Muslim communities in Japan. The first mosque in Japan, Kobe Mosque, was constructed in 1935 and there are currently more than 30 mosques in the country. Many of the ethnic Japanese during the economic boom of the 1980s converted when large swathes of immigrants from Asia came and integrated with local population. The majority of estimates of the Muslim population have been put at around 100,000 in estimates. Although a minority religion in Japan, Islam is currently the fastest growing religion, and is especially prominent among young ethnic Japanese married women, as documented by the Japan Times as early as the 1990s. Furthermore, in 2000, Keiko Sakurai had estimated the number of ethnic Japanese Muslims in Japan at 63,552, and around 70,000 100,000 foreign Muslims residing in the country. However, according to essayist, Michael Penn, 90 per cent of Muslims are foreign and about 10 per cent are ethnic, but the true figure is unknown and this is just another speculative estimate as the Japanese government does not take religion into account as part of the demographic concern under religious freedom. hj

Sources: The World Bank and Japan National Tourism Organization, amongst others. The Halal Journal | July+Aug 2010 |

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7/26/10 8:56:05 AM

islamic finance

A role for sports in Islamic finance?

An olympic and world cup sukuk may soon be a reality as nations evaluate bids...


is Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, VicePresident and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, made an extraordinary comment in April this year, “… we are conducting feasibility studies to evaluate the costs and benefits of a bid [for the 2020 Olympics].” Qatar submitted a bid to host the 2022 World Cup, and bid committee Chairman, Shaikh Mohammad Khalifa Al Thani, said, “… A World Cup in Qatar will be a new World Cup, bringing people and different cultures together in the name of football…” I’ve been involved in sports for 40 years – tennis, bicycling and basketball – and after The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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reading such comments, a question comes to mind: what role should Islamic finance play in ‘local’ sports, besides offering Islamic mortgages for villas and apartments in, say, Dubai Sports City or ‘guidance’ on appropriate attire and logo/ emblem? Sports build friendship bridges across cultures, countries and faiths by uniting people, be it the Olympics or World Cup, and Islamic finance needs to be involved in a variety of capacities.

Words by Rushdi Siddiqui

It will not only be part of the necessary brand building exercise, by showing the progressive side of this embryonic industry and encourage more media stories from the business section to the main section, but also show leadership in addressing local health issues with sports. GCC Sporting Events In the GCC/ Malaysia, which are hubs for Islamic finance, there are international sporting events — such as in tennis and

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entertainment, but also recruit and add to customer base.

Imagine a consortium of Islamic banks, from GCC, Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan and Turkey, issuing and listing a Triple A, multiple currency, long dated benchmark size UK Olympic and Brazilian World Cup Sukuk – that would be the beginning of real standardisation!

golf, Formula One and Asian Games which are attended by bankable customers. However, are the Islamic banks major (or even minor) sponsors? Do Islamic banks support any of the local or regional teams and star athletes with their name on their stadiums or jerseys, as commonly found in, say, US and UK? The young and old, rich and poor, follow sports passionately, hence, an opportunity to not only affiliate Islamic banks to international ‘Halal’

Naming rights A Dubai metro train station having naming rights from an Islamic bank, while interesting, may not have the same impact as naming, as say, KFH, DIB or Al Hilal Football Stadium. Regional banks have acquired companies, via proprietary capital allocation, including high-end car company (Aston Martin), in the G-20 countries — either via Islamic financing or with an Islamic tranche, where target companies are within the permissible precepts of Islamic Shariah. In the west, leisure sport companies like Callaway, Wilson (subsidiary of Amer Sports), with Callaway in the S&P Islamic equity indexes, are not national security issues [may be local icons], and have changed hands a few times. Hence, it is an interesting Islamic finance acquisition consideration, with the possibility of also listing on a GCC exchange. Unlike technology or finance companies, such challenging business to understand, sports companies are an easier explanation. Obviously, a thorough vetting, under the watchful eye of the Shariah Board on operations, of non-compliant subsidiary ownership/revenue for athlete endorsement will be necessary. With sporting companies come athletes, like Nike’s entourage of Tiger Woods and David Beckham, who are corporate brandbuilding ambassadors. Best examples One of the best examples of a global athlete (in good standing) is the Chinese basketball superstar, Yao Ming of the

Houston Rockets, who raised the profile of basketball and his endorsed products in China. In basketball and football, retired Muslim international superstars like Kareem-Abdul Jabbar and Hakeem Olajuwon, and Zinedine Zidan are still global brand names, and Islamic banks should reach out to build sports academies in the region for the local youth and expatriate community. Take this one step further and have exhibition games, from teams in the National Basketball Association and the National Football League in the US, Premier League, in UAE, Qatar, Bahrain or Malaysia, and Islamic banks take part in funding for such ‘delegations.’ Olympic sukuk Imagine a consortium of Islamic banks, from GCC, Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan and Turkey, issuing and listing a Triple A, multiple currency, long dated benchmark size UK Olympic and Brazilian World Cup Sukuk – that would be the beginning of real standardisation! It would show the sukuk market’s resilience and reach, deployment of petro-liquidity for legacy projects for indebted countries looking for ‘sports’ funding, and make Islamic finance an important part of the global financial intermediation. It would build bridges of two-way commerce to new geographies: funding opportunity in, say, natural resource-rich South America looking for liquidity, with liquidity looking for diversified opportunity. Shaikh Mohammad spoke of the ‘feasibility study’ on making a bid for the Olympics, and Islamic banks’ need to be part of the study. A good beginning is supporting selected Olympic sports and activities in the country, strategic acquisition of sports companies and obtaining appropriate brand ambassadors, in addition to having the collateral benefit off an enhanced image with cross sell appeal, potential recruits, new customer base, plus raise the profile of local health issues in sports.


Notes: * About the Author: Rushdi Siddiqui is the Global Head of Islamic Finance & OIC Countries at Thomson Reuters (TR). In this role, he works closely with Islamic finance and banking professionals, including Shariah scholars, fund managers, treasury, financial hubs, regulators, stock exchanges, central banks, Takaful (insurance) entities, Halal industry, and intra-OIC (57 Muslim countries), to further strengthen TR’s business. Recently, he led the Islamic finance team at TR in the successful global launch of the Islamic Finance (IF) Gateway – the world’s first platform that addresses the work flow in IF across multiple asset classes. **This article was previously published with the same title on 23rd May 2010 in Gulf News (, and is reprinted with permission from the author. The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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7/26/10 8:58:40 AM

islamic finance update

financial year ended 30 June 2009, the net profit and net assets attributable to its equity holders were RM268.326 million and RM2.281 billion respectively. |SOURCE: BERNAMA, 5 APRIL 2010

BANK ISLAM RECORDS STEADY CREDIT CARD GROWTH Bank Islam Malaysia Bhd, a subsidiary of BIMB Holdings Bhd, is enjoying brisk credit card business despite the RM50 service charge imposed on credit and charge cards and RM25 for supplementary cards. Its Assistant General Manager for Credit Card Centre, Muhammad Izmir Chan Abdullah, said the growth has been positive and encouraging. “Bank Islam’s credit card business rakes in an average turnover of RM70 million per month. There are about 500,000 customers who use the bank’s credit card since it was introduced eight years ago,” he said. Meanwhile, Bank Islam’s General Manager for Strategic Communication, Datuk Wan Ismail Wan Yusoh, said, “Another branch would open for business in Terengganu this July due to overwhelming demand for the bank’s services. This will bring the number of branches in the state to five. The new branch will be located in the Giant Hypermarket at Jalan Hiliran to ease the congestion at the other four branches.” Bank Islam has 100 branches nationwide offering more than 50 products and provides consumer and Islamic banking services in Malaysia. |SOURCE: BERNAMA, 9 APRIL 2010

MAS ISSUES NEW BANKING REGULATIONS TO CLARIFY POLICY ON ISLAMIC BANKING The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has issued new banking regulations to clarify its policy on Islamic banking by explaining the regulatory treatment of specific Islamic structures. Specifically, the regulations refer to Singaporebased banks who want to enter into Istisna or project finance transactions. Istisna financing is typically applied to infrastructure development projects, an area that is of significant growth potential in a rapidly developing

Asia. MAS Executive Director, Tai Boon Leong, announced these changes at the Singapore Islamic Finance News Roadshow on 13 April 2010. Mr. Tai says in providing such financing for their customer’s specified made-to-order projects, banks must ensure that they manage their risks prudently and have effective risk mitigation measures in place. With the issuance of the Istisna regulations, the MAS have extended Islamic finance into the field of participatory finance for economic projects. Mr. Tai added that MAS has also largely completed its review of the main Islamic structures commonly used by the industry. More details can be found on the MAS website. |SOURCE: CHANNEL NEWSASIA, 14 APRIL 2010

MAYBANK ISLAMIC STILL SEES STRONG AND ROBUST GROWTH Maybank Islamic Bhd is still experiencing strong and robust growth in its operations due to an increasing acceptance in the use of Islamic financial services in this country, said its Chief Executive Officer, Ibrahim Hassan. “Islamic banking is growing at a robust rate. In the eight months of the financial year ending 30 June 2010, Maybank Islamic posted an annualised financial growth of 36 per cent and annualised deposit growth of 32 per cent,” he told a press conference after handing over RM300,000 to Lembaga Zakat Selangor (LZS) here on Friday. The money is for its financial year 2009 Zakat payment. According to Ibrahim, with such an expansion and growth in business, the company expects to pay more Zakat for its financial year ending June 2010. He said in the financial year ended 30 June 2009, the company allocated RM5 million for Zakat payment, a RM1.4 million increase from 2008. Such an increase, he added, is in line with the growth of Maybank Islamic’s business in terms of financing and deposits. Ibrahim handed over the Zakat payment to LZS General Manager, Ahmad Shahir Makhtar, witnessed by Selangor Menteri Besar, Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim, and

Maybank Group President and Chief Executive Officer, Datuk Seri Abdul Wahid Omar. |SOURCE: BERNAMA, 19 MARCH 2010

QIIB LESSONS ON ISLAMIC BANKING Qatar International Islamic Bank (QIIB) recently hosted students from the Khadija Elementary School for girls. International Islamic Chief Executive Officer, Abdulbasit A. al-Shaibei, briefed students on Islamic banking in general and also about QIIB’s activities. He also spoke about the bank’s achievements since inception in 1991. QIIB Executive Manager, Ali Hamad al-Misaifry, spoke on the different savings schemes and other products being offered by the bank. The students’ visit was in line with the International Islamic’s policy of hosting Qatari school pupils periodically and introducing them to the banking sector. The bank also has a scheme in place to spot young Qatari talent and support them through stipends and placements within the bank. They visited all the bank departments including the Treasury, where Manager, Ishaq Ibrahim, outlined the activities. The students were accompanied by their teachers and Lynda Abu Hazeema, QIIB Ladies Branch Manager. They also took part in a question and answer session with top QIIB executives. All students were also given souvenirs by the bank. |SOURCE: GULF TIMES, 14 APRIL 2010

BSN TARGETS RM500M IN ISLAMIC BANKING BUSINESS Bank Simpanan Nasional (BSN) aims to achieve more than RM500 million in Islamic banking business this year. BSN VicePresident and Head of Islamic Banking, Azaddin Ngah Tasir, said the demand for Shariahcompliant products had grown substantially in recent years, making the target a realistic one. “I don’t see any problems for us (BSN Islamic banking) to achieve the target of RM500 million in terms of financing to be disbursed this year for all BSN Islamic products,” he said. BSN currently offers four Islamic

banking products — BSN An Naim, BSN Aflah, BSN Al Aiman and BSN Giro-I. Azaddin said sales of each of the products were expected to increase by 10-20 per cent from last year. More Islamic products would be introduced later this year, he said. On the competition arising from more emphasis given to Islamic banking in the financial services sector, he said this healthy environment would benefit customers in terms of better rates and packages. “Without competition, we (Islamic banking institutions) would take our customers for granted. When there is competition, we must be creative and always be ready,” he said. BSN Ahsan Warga Emas, a deposit scheme based on the Mudharabah concept, is specially tailored for citizens above 50 years of age. Azaddin said the bank expected total deposits of RM250 million for the scheme, which requires a minimum deposit of RM5,000. |SOURCE: THE EDGE MALAYSIA, 14 APRIL 2010

NEW MD FOR HONG LEONG ISLAMIC BANK Hong Leong Islamic Bank Berhad (HLISB) has appointed Hijah Arifakh Othman as its Managing Director to head its Islamic financial services. Besides leading HLISB, which will focus on providing total solutions in investment banking, corporate and commercial, and consumer finance, Hijah will also supervise the bank’s Shariah unit and all Shariah-based aspects of the group. Hijah, with over 25 years of experience in treasury, debt capital markets and balance sheet management, will play the key role of building the group’s regional Islamic financial services franchise and create value out of crossborder transactions. The focus areas will be on Islamic asset management, Islamic investment banking and wholesale banking, Islamic treasury, Islamic wealth management and takaful. |SOURCE: SUN2SURF, 27 APRIL 2010

The Halal Journal | May+June 2010 |

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islamic finance update Compiled by Zaahira Muhammad

Abdulwahab Al-Wazzan. Speaking to the press on the sidelines of the opening of KIB’s new branch in Farwaniya, Al-Wazzan said that banks in Kuwait were looking to develop the country’s status as a financial spot in the region, revealing that more foreign banks are interested in the local operations. On the Islamic banking contribution to the real estate market, the official called for revising laws considering the bank’s funding to this sector which needs more contribution. KIB’s Islamic products are making a statement within the banking market with more banks considering the conversion into the Islamic banking method, affirmed Al-Wazzan.

DIB NAMED TOP PERFORMER IN UAE BANKING SECTOR IN LATEST YOUGOV SIRAJ Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB) has been named the top performer in the UAE banking sector in the latest YouGov Siraj BrandIndex poll, which is based on the opinions of more than 750 UAEbased respondents interviewed per fortnight. According to the most recent BrandIndex, which was introduced in March 2009, DIB has established its leadership position in a wide range of categories, including quality, value for money and corporate reputation. The world’s first Islamic bank also leads in primary indicators such as Buzz and Attention scores, pillars of BrandIndex that reflect the immediate impact the brand has on the top of the minds of consumers in the UAE. DIB’s Attention scores, in particular, set a benchmark that other UAE banks have yet to rival in attracting the attention of consumers. “We are extremely pleased that the bank’s ongoing efforts to exceed the expectations of our customers across the UAE continue to prove so successful,” said Dr. Adnan Chilwan, DIB Chief of Retail and Business Banking. “These strong rankings further support our focus on providing quality, value-for-money products and services that meet the needs of our institutional, corporate, high net worth and retail clients.” The banking sector was launched as one of the initial eight sectors tracked by YouGov Siraj, a regional leader in online market research and survey design, when BrandIndex was introduced last year. Dubai Islamic Bank has been tracked ever since, and has consistently performed as a top banking brand across all categories.


TAKAFUL IKHLAS TO OFFER THREE NEW SCHEMES NEXT YEAR Takaful Ikhlas Sdn Bhd plans to introduce at least three new takaful schemes by next year for individual and corporate customers in line with the growing demand for takaful products. Its Executive Vice President, Wan Mohd Fadzlullah Wan Abdullah, said the company – a subsidiary of MNRB Holdings – was constantly innovating products to tap the robust 20 per cent annual growth of the local takaful industry. He also mentioned that the awareness among the public, especially Muslims, is increasing and we are always looking for an opportunity to offer takaful products that meet the Malaysian needs, especially involving death, critical illness and permanent disability. The company presented a cheque worth RM81,106.12 to cancer victim Naimah Abdul Satar and another cheque worth RM63,234.12 to the family of Constable Mohd Zulfikri Rasdi, a member of the police paramilitary force who died in a road accident in Tapah, Perak last year. Wan Mohd Fadzlullah said, with the takaful industry projected to grow even more rapidly, Takaful Ikhlas was in a position to tap the market as it offered a complete range of takaful products for individual


KUWAIT’S BANKING ‘MARKET’ HEADS IN ISLAMIC DIRECTION Kuwait banking market is heading on a more Islamicoriented direction with many banks transforming their operations to Shariah-compliant, said Chairman of the Board for Kuwait International Bank (KIB), The Halal Journal | May+June 2010 |

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and corporate customers. The takaful products were not just about religion-based insurance but also premised on ethical values, he said. Takaful Ikhlas offers takaful services which include more than 80 products to over 1.4 million certificate holders to date. Its product portfolio consists of 76 per cent family takaful and 24 per cent general takaful. The company, which has an authorised capital of RM500 million and paid-up capital of RM195 million, provides its Islamic insurance services through 4,500 agents nationwide. |SOURCE: BERNAMA, 18 MARCH 2010

TAKAFUL RE ACHIEVED A TURNAROUND IN 2009 BY RECORDING A NET PROFIT OF USD10.0 MILLION Takaful Re Limited (TRL) achieved a turnaround in the financial year 2009 by recording a net profit of USD10.0 million against a net loss of USD10.6 million in 2008. In view of the significant growth in performance and profitability, TRL’s Board of Directors recommended a cash dividend of 3.8 per cent on paid up capital (USD0.038 cents per share) amounting to USD4.75 million and the shareholders approved the payment in the company’s Annual General Meeting held on 21 March 2010 in Dubai. The Gross contributions increased by 43 per cent to USD48.7 million in 2009 from USD34.0 million in 2008; despite difficult market conditions impacted by the continuous recession, drastic reduction of new construction projects and insurance rates softness. Despite the volatility of the regional market, Takaful Re reported total investment earnings of USD7.2 million against a loss of USD11.6 million in 2008. Invested assets at the end of the year stood at USD129.8 million as against USD120.6 million in 2008. Khalid Al Bustani, Takaful Re’s Chairman, said: “The continuous support of our Takaful and cooperative partners, Shariah Supervisory Board members and the Shareholders were the main driving force in achieving the positive result. Takaful Re will continue pursuing its own

strategy based on professionalism and strict compliance with regulatory requirements”. Shareholder’s equity stood at USD129.8 million and the book value per share was USD1.04 at the end of December 2009. |SOURCE: ZAWYA, 21 MARCH 2010

MAYBANK TO TRANSFER 69.05 PER CENT INTEREST IN MAYBAN FORTIS TO ETIQA Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) announced the proposed transfer of 165.321 million ordinary shares in Mayban Fortis Holdings Bhd, representing its direct equity interest of 69.05 per cent, to Etiqa International Holdings Sdn Bhd. The purchase consideration of RM359.34 million will be satisfied by an amount owing by Etiqa International to Maybank, the bank said in a filing to Bursa Malaysia. After the completion of the proposed transfer, Etiqa International will serve as the investment holding company for Maybank’s insurance, takaful and asset management businesses. The principal activities of Mayban Fortis are investment holding and providing shared services to its group of companies on a reimbursable basis. For its subsidiaries, the principal activities include general and life insurance business, general and family takaful business, investment-linked business, offshore investment-linked life insurance business, fund management and investment holding. According to Maybank, the proposed transfer will assist in realigning its insurance and takaful business and provide itself flexibility for any potential business expansion. The proposed transfer will also allow Maybank to build on its existing platform internationally, hence raising the insurance and takaful business profile, the bank said. This would, in turn, strengthen its current position as one of the largest and leading takaful companies in the world. This was in line with the government’s initiative to promote Malaysia as a major hub for Islamic finance. Based on audited consolidated financial statements of the Mayban Fortis group for the

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7/26/10 9:08:41 AM

July+August 2010 Undoubtedly, the world will be a better place to inhabit as crime drops and mercy rises. Fasting during Ramadhan stresses the strong axis between physicalmental-psychological and spiritual aspects of a human being. As prescribed by Allah the Almighty (Quran, Surah AlBaqarah, verse 183-187), the ultimate goal of the fast is to develop taqwa (consciousness of God) in people.

Fasting in Ramadhan A Medical Perspective

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Words by Dr. S.M. Bakir MD, MSc, PhD

7/26/10 9:02:09 AM

cover feature

Fasting is prescribed by all religions. The early church recognised fasting as a means of obtaining spiritual peace and physical health. European clinics have successfully used fasting for detoxification, cleansing and healing using various types of food withdrawal.


ur bodies contain about 100 trillion cells and there are more than 200 types of cells. Cellular decline may be caused by accumulation of waste products, and natural hygienists believe that one cause of disease is toxin saturation at cellular level since ageing is not commensurate with calendar years but rather with health of the cells. Symptoms like headache, diarrhoea and depression occur as the body deals with autotoxicity. During fasting, the levels of toxins removed from the body in the urine can increase tenfold. Ramadhan is the ninth lunar month and etymologically, the Arabic meaning (from Turkish and Persian ‘ramazan’) is intense heat, because when the word originated, it was during the hot summer month. The unique Islamic fasting is total abstention from food, drink, smoking and sexual intercourse from dawn to sunset. Paralleling the presence of solar energy, this may call on researchers to study the reaction to light and darkness in humans similar to studies that have been done to observe plants. Code of ethics emphasised during Ramadhan such as honesty, compassion and charity, prescribes and encourages a more balanced lifestyle and a healthier community. Physically, studies have shown the following medical benefits of fasting:

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Nervous system: tranquillity, peacefulness of the mind, and levels of neurotransmitters such as acetylcholine increases after fasting. It is worth mentioning that deficiency from acetylcholine leads to Alzheimer’s disease. Cardiovascular system: it is well reported that stress causes stroke, angina and hypertension. Tranquillity experienced during fasting is remarkable due to reduced sympathetic over-activity (sympathetic system is overactive during stress), and it also reduces heart rate, lowering the possibility of stroke, angina and hypertension. The Halal Journal | July+Aug 2010 |

Living.indd 64


Digestive system: because of abstention from food and drink, the system is at rest, therefore reducing problems such as irritable colon. Because of the connection between the brain and gut (brain-gut axis), it has been well reported that any psychological or emotional reactions can reflect itself in the gut. Also, the redistribution of blood to other parts of the body such as the brain can lead to more nourishment, because usually the digestive system requires a lot of oxygen supply in order to perform its function.

4 5

Reproductive system: when fasting, studies have shown a drop in lust and an increase in fertility because the ovum and sperm count increases as it is allowed more time to recuperate and reproduce. Diabetes: a drop in blood sugar and glycated proteins benefits diabetics. Also, the level of insulin drops while its sensitivity increases.

The unique Islamic fasting is total abstention from food, drink, smoking and sexual intercourse from dawn to sunset.

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During fasting, the levels of toxins removed from the body in the urine can increase tenfold


Obesity: many studies reported some weight loss when fasting, so long as daily activities are carried out as normal (when not fasting). This is because more existing energy is burnt to fuel the body for executing its daily routines and functions.

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Cancer: some studies reported some reduction in oncogenes (cancer-causing genes) and enhancement of DNA repair during fasting. Hyperinsulinemia: the levels of insulin in the blood increases after food intake. This hormone causes storage of food in the cells and their growth has been related to tumor formation. Therefore, fasting will reduce insulin levels in the blood due to the lower food intake.

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Immune system: both cellular and humoral immunity increases after fasting, as the amount of cortisol drops. Renal system: fasting reduces the tendency of stone/ crystal formation in the renal system especially in the kidneys and bladder. It also shows a drop in diabetic renal failure.


Memory: fasting enhances memory, which could be due to a rise in acetylcholine and/ or antidiuretic hormone which increases when blood concentration rises and its volume decreases.


Physical fitness increases after fasting.

In conclusion, apart from the medical aspects mentioned, there are many other global benefits. One can expect less pollution due to less smoking, people with more values and virtues, people who are compassionate and kind to each other, and there may be more charity for the needy. Undoubtedly, the world will be a better place to inhabit as crime drops and mercy rises. Fasting during Ramadhan stresses the strong axis between physical-mental-psychological and spiritual aspects of a human being. As prescribed by Allah the Almighty (Quran, Surah Al-Baqarah, verse 183-187), the ultimate goal of the fast is to develop taqwa (consciousness of God) in people. The United Nations ought to allocate a session to discuss and educate the whole world about fasting in Ramadhan as it clearly calls and implements the betterment of mankind. hj

Note about the author: Dr. S.M. Bakir is an endocrinologist born in Iraq. He acquired his PhD. from the University of London after which he left to teach at the College of Medicine in King Saud University, Riyadh. He has published several papers on benefits of Islamic fasting in medical perspective, amongst other topics, and is now based in the US. The Halal Journal | July+Aug 2010 |

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7/26/10 9:02:22 AM





Simply hearty: A journey through Cambodian cuisine Words By Ruzaimi Sany Zainuddin Photos By Azizan Zolkipli

Cambodia’s sizable ethnic Cham Muslim community, distributed throughout the country, and expatriate Muslim community, means that Halal food is easily found in the main touristy areas such as the ancient Siem Reap, the capital Phnom Penh and seaside Sihanoukville. Although there is yet the existence of a national Halal standard, most of the outlets have earned the approval of local Islamic societies or the Cambodian Muslim Development Foundation. This signals the seriousness of the Cambodia Ministry of Tourism to tap into the rapidly growing Islamic tourism market. And Muslims wanting to explore traditional Cambodian or Khmer cuisine need not miss out on this opportunity. Khmer cuisine shares much in common with neighbouring Thailand, although it is generally not as spicy; and Vietnam, with whom it shares many common dishes and colonial history, both being part of the French colonial empire in South East Asia. It has also drawn upon influences from the cuisines of China and France, both of whom are powerful movers in Cambodian history. After a hard day touring the ancient temples of Angkor World Heritage Site, D’Wau Restaurant in Siem Reap which is located at the entrance of Sor Proun Villa is massively popular with Muslim tourists and locals. Just hop on any one of those tuk-tuks and they will lead you there. A warm welcome – which draws heavily on the reputation of Asian hospitality – is assured. Although the restaurant bills itself as Malaysian, it also offers Western, Thai and local selections. The restaurant décor is light with simple furniture which complements the casual and all day dining options. Do look out for what is claimed to be the best Beef Lok Lak in Siem Reap, a traditional Khmer food. Served in most restaurants in Cambodia, its taste varies depending on the chef. Lok Lak consists of marinated beef slices served with locally grown salad topped with fried egg and sauce made from Kampot Pepper. Aside from adding taste, marinating also makes the meat juicier and tender when served. Lok Lak goes well with steamed rice and is taken either as an individual meal or a family treat. It is s simple yet filling dish which anyone with basic culinary skills can try cooking at home. D’Wau Restaurant #0275, National Road No. 6, Banteay Chas Village, Salakam Commune, Siem Reap, Cambodia. Open: Daily from 6.00am until 9.00pm. Tel/Fax: +85563966955 Catering & Delivery services are available.

The Halal Journal | July+Aug 2010 |

Living.indd 66

D’ Wau

Fast Facts: Kampot Pepper is recognised as one of the best peppers in the world. It is grown only in the Kampot Province of southern Cambodia. You will first experience its pungent effect on the tip of your tongue for a few seconds before a lovely fresh minty flavour greets your mouth, which will linger for several minutes.

Beef Lok Lak

Coconut Ice Blended

Nasi Lemak

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masta ad THJ.indd 1

7/20/10 8:31:48 PM


art & literature

photography + photojournalism


Connecting music and overall well-being

Title: A Young Muslim’s Guide to the Modern World Author: Seyyed Hossein Nasr Publisher: Islamic Texts Society (1987) Language: English ISBN-13: 978-9834321-185

A Young Muslim’s Guide to the Modern World, by one of Islam’s greatest contemporary scholars, was written specifically for Muslims, and in particular young Muslims, urging them to become familiar with their religion and to gain an understanding of the modern world from the Islamic point of view in order to respond positively to its challenges. This guide, the first of its kind in any language, presents an exposition of the teachings of Islam as revealed in the Qur’an, explained in the Hadith and Sunna of the Prophet and commented upon by Muslim scholars and thinkers, as well as outlining the Western religious and intellectual tradition. Seyyed Hossein Nasr was born in Teheran to a family of traditional scholars and physicians. After receiving his early education in Iran he went to America where he studied physics,and the history of science and philosophy at M.I.T. and Harvard, where he received his doctorate. Nasr was Professor at Teheran University and founder and first President of the Iranian Academy of Philosophy. He is currently Professor of Islamic Studies at George Washington University and author of numerous books including: Islam and the Plight of Modern Man, Ideals and Realities of Islam and Science & Civilization in Islam, all published by The Islamic Texts Society. *Note: This book description was extracted from the Islamic Texts Society’s website ( uk). The Islamic Texts Society is a publishing house founded in 1981 and registered as an educational charity in the UK (reg. no. 283832). The Society produces English translations of works of traditional importance to the Islamic faith and culture, including editions of hitherto unpublished manuscripts, and also sponsors contemporary works on Islamic subjects by scholars from all parts of the world. The Society hopes thereby to promote a greater understanding of Islam among both Muslims and non-Muslims, catering for laypersons as well as academics in the field of Islamic studies. To date the Society has published over forty books on various aspects of Islam and the Islamic heritage. ** Orders can be sent directly to The Islamic Texts Society.

The Halal Journal | July+Aug 2010 |

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Title: Divine Inspiration – Seven Principles of Islamic Architecture Author: Nisreen Moustafa Publisher: Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia (2008) Language: English ISBN-13: 978-9834321-185

Divine Inspiration – Seven Principles of Islamic Architecture explores the relationship between Muslims and their beliefs, manifested in the built environment. Just as Islam embodies a way of life and serves as a cohesive force amongst ethnically and culturally diverse people, it also contains a conspicuous aesthetic dimension. There is no essential difference between sacred and secular art in Islam. This allows Islamic architecture to symbolise the spiritual path of the religion, transcending the temporal considerations of form and function. Through the study of seven key religious beliefs – Tawhid (Unity), Ihtiram (Respect), Ikhlas (Sincerity), Iqtisad (Moderation/ Humility), Haya’ (Modesty), ‘Ilm (Pursuit of Knowledge), and Dhikr (Remembrance) – a cross-section of Islamic life and practice is united with the corresponding architectural principles. By integrating religion into all facets of life, and life itself into the rhythms and patterns of its values, Islam manages to create a sense of unity that is reflected in architecture that has been consistently and universally admired. *Note: This book description was extracted from the Islamic Art Museum Malaysia (IAMM)’s website ( IAMM was established in December 1998 and is South East Asia’s largest museum of Islamic art. It houses more than seven thousand artefacts, and has an exceptional library of Islamic-art books. Committed to preserving and propagating knowledge, IAMM considers publications as a vital tool in this quest. By the middle of 2006 the museum had published 16 books, covering a wide range of topics. Most of these publications are catalogues of exhibitions, although books of a more general nature are now being produced. The aim is at all times to support the work of the museum and to improve visitors’ enjoyment.

A new movement in urban musicianship

Khalil Ismail is an artist who has dedicated his personal and professional life to educating and uplifting those around him and the followers of his music, and spearheading a new movement in urban musicianship. Just in the last year, he released a wellreceived debut album, The Calm Before the Storm, performed before thousands of new fans around the world, hosted workshops with youth on integrity in art, and helped conceive WholeMusic, a non-profit initiative with the goal of elucidating the connection between music and our overall wellbeing by promoting entertainment that inspires, motivates and encourages a healthy lifestyle. Rather than simply being yet another urban music option for iPods, Khalil Ismail has dedicated his career to educating, inspiring and uplifting audiences using catchy tunes and galvanizing lyrics. Because of this determination, he was invited to perform at the Global Peace Conference in London, and recognised internationally for his music, winning several awards and acclamations, the most prestigious perhaps being the Music Aid Music Award for Best Male Solo Artist due to his conscientious lyrics and inspirational messages. So... despite being young, Black and from the inner city, his story is not one you’ve heard before; he strives musically to strike a balance – neither glamorising the negative nor coming off as self-righteous. Khalil was born in Washington, D.C. to Islamic proselytes. Growing up with these principles and moral standards helped shape his focus to social, familial and spiritual issues. Every part of his music is influenced by his firm belief in God and His principles, and will be used for the betterment of the world community. For more information, log on to **Note: Biography extracted from Khalil Ismail’s official website.

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art & literature



Tarek Atrissi Focusing on cross cultural design & developing modern Typo/ Graphic Arabic Design

Sumber Ayu feminine wash for a fresh, clean feeling Looking good on the outside is equally important as feeling good on the inside. Sumber Ayu, a leading feminine personal care brand, addresses a woman’s intimate cleansing needs with a special cleansing product – Sumber Ayu Feminine Wash. “Women occasionally experience irritation around the intimate area from dryness, itching, and abnormal discharge, which are sometimes caused by shower gels and perfumed soaps that may be too harsh for the body’s most delicate area,” says Lau Foong Yue, UNZA’s Marketing Manager. “Sumber Ayu Feminine Wash has the right pH balance to help reduce these discomforts as it is designed specifically for intimate cleansing.” Sumber Ayu Feminine Wash contains natural ingredients that are safe and gentle on a woman’s delicate skin. The key ingredient is Daun Sirih (betel pepper leaves), a generationsold traditional ingredient used in Indonesian, Malay and Indian medicines. It contains strong antioxidants to strengthen and protect the skin. Daun Sirih extract also works as a natural antiseptic, relieving pain and discouraging sources of irritation and infection. Sumber Ayu Feminine Wash is pH balanced to 3.5, the optimal pH level for the external vaginal area. The wash, clinically tested for daily use, contains hypoallergenic fragrances to delicately scent skin and keep skin feeling clean and refreshed while discouraging allergic reactions. Sumber Ayu Feminine Wash is available in five different fragrances - Rose, Orchid, Floral, Fruity and Musk. It is available in all leading hypermarkets, supermarkets and pharmacies throughout Malaysia. Sumber Ayu Feminine Wash in 90 ml and 200 ml bottles retail at RM3.20 and RM5.30 respectively. The Sumber Ayu range also includes a traditional Javanese body scrub, liquid body soap and whitening body lotion, all of which contain only natural ingredients and are suitable for any skin type, to make all women feel confident, clean, and radiant throughout the day.

Born in Beirut, Tarek Atrissi has worked and studied in Lebanon, the Netherlands, Qatar, Dubai and the United States. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design with distinction from the American University of Beirut, a Masters of Arts in Interactive Multimedia from the Utrecht School of the Arts in the Netherlands, and a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Design from the School of Visual Arts in New York – where he studied under people like Steven Heller, Paula Scher and Stefan Sagmeister. His work has been exhibited at the Guggenheim Museum in New York and is in the permanent Design collection of the Affiche Museum in the Netherlands. His projects were featured in major international design magazines and books worldwide. His awards include the Type Directors Club’s, The Dutch Design award, two Adobe Design Achievement awards in 2002, the Aquent Design award in 2003, as well as four IBDAA99 awards. He was selected in 2005 for Print Magazine’s Twenty under Thirty, the international review for the most achieved Visual artists below the age of 30. He is the co-author of “Visual Narratives from Arabia” published by UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) in 2007. He is the founder of the online communication platform for Arabic Type,, and is a frequent guest speaker in several universities and design seminars across the world. Tarek has taught at the American University in Dubai, at the Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar, and at the Art, Design and Technology Masters Program of UNESCO in 2005. He is currently teaching at the Department of Art, Media and Technology at the Utrecht School of the Arts in the Netherlands. He is currently the principal of his own design studio, Tarek Atrissi Design (, based in the Netherlands and serving a variety of clients, big and small, in Europe, the Middle East and the United States. The Studio’s multi-disciplinary scope of work covers all kinds of visual communication – with a primary focus on cross cultural design and on developing a modern Typo/ Graphic Arabic Design. The Studio’s projects included designing the visual identity for the country of Qatar in 2004 and the masthead and identity for Al-Ghad Newspaper in Jordan; among other clients are BBC, MTV, Georgetown University, Etisalat Telecommunication and other nonprofit and small or start up businesses. Tarek was a creative director for Meta Design in Germany, and has consulted with international branding worldwide with firms such as Wolf Ollins and Futurebrand. He became a Dutch citizen in 2007, and currently holds dual Lebanese and Dutch citizenships. For more information, log on to or **Note: Biography extracted from Tarek Atrissi’s official website. The Halal Journal | July+Aug 2010 |

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art & literature

photography + photojournalism


Top Left Eco-tourism...Shandori Hotel in Jiaoxi, Taipei, Taiwan is located on a paddy field for a serene and calming retreat. By Layla Qamar Top Right Meat and bone seller at work in a rural part of Malaysia. By Mark Piet Bottom Halal products only. Bottles of ingredients for food and drinks at a Muslim-owned stall on a street in the heart of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. By 贸morfi zo铆

The Halal Journal | July+Aug 2010 |

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Top Sunset in Dubai beyond desert shrubs. By Layla Qamar Bottom A favourite stop - Muslim-owned noodle stall at a night market in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. By Mark Piet

The Halal Journal | July+Aug 2010 |

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parting words For Muslim women around the world looking for a cool, good quality skincare brand, OnePure Halal Beauty is another range of products to try. Starting up with a skincare range that suits very hot climates such as the Middle East, OnePure launched their products about a year ago successfully in Dubai, and is now expanding to other regions. The Halal Journal spoke to the founder and CEO of OnePure Halal Beauty, Layla Mandi, at the recently concluded World Halal Forum in Kuala Lumpur.

Halal skincare can be cool, attractive & competitive Why did you create a Halal Beauty range? I created OnePure Halal Skincare because there were no products in the market that were Halal-certified that I would want to use. There are some fast moving, kind of inexpensive brands that are out there that are Halal-certified, but I do not want to go from Chanel to that. So I wanted to create a brand that was really cool and of very good quality that I would want to use. I believe that other women

would obviously want the same thing as well. Your brand is now in Galeries Lafayette in Dubai. Where else are you planning to place your products? Yes, Galeries Lafayette in Dubai Mall is a famous French departmental store and I’m going to be at Harrods at the end of the summer. I am targeting really high-end stores. I want Halal to be cool. I want non-Muslims girls to

go, “Oh my God, that’s amazing! What is that product? I want it!” as opposed to “Oh, I would love to use that but it’s not Halal…” So I wanted to go the reverse and the other way and the only way to do that is to make great quality products, beautiful packaging and put them in the right stores. Do you think you would ever be a competitor to well known brands such as L’Oréal, Chanel and so on? I am a competitor! My product sits directly across from La Prairie. For me, it is not what or who you think your competitor is – it is who you sit next to. So the final statement is “I am going to feel I’m successful only when I have another Halal brand that I am competing with”. Right now, I have Dior and La Prairie - those are my competitors. What is your target market? The Muslim market is a huge market with 1.8 billion Muslims worldwide. I want to target Muslims globally first. So that is why I am going to these beautiful departmental stores. Here, in Kuala Lumpur, I will launch at Isetan or Parkson. I want the customers to go: “Oh, I do have an actual choice!” What would you say to companies who want to go into the Halal cosmetics/ skincare sector? I am begging them to do something of quality. I

The Halal Journal | Jul+Aug 2010 |

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do not want them to just think: “I’m going to make a product that is Halal,” and that’s it. I want them to make something awesome. That would make me happy; that would make what I am doing better because then I will have competition which will improve my products. And I want them to do beautiful products that are better, for example to suit the type of weather as well. Now, my products are developed for really, really hot climates. So I want them to really think about it before they actually just put the Halal label on it. I want them to go: “Oh, what works for this climate? What works for this type of customer? What works?” and not just “This is your new Halal toner…” and put the label on it. The thing is you want to make sure your customers do not only buy your products once. You want them to use it regularly. I want someone, if they are going to make a new Halal line, to make it awesome. That’s all. When you say ‘awesome’, what do you mean? It must be innovative. I want them to use the best type of ingredients. I want them to have the best packaging, the best marketing… I want them to be competitive. Let’s say to compete with Chanel; I want them to be in the spirit of: “If Chanel’s here I want to be on top of that.” And then that’s a real Halal brand. hj

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