Thailand’s bid to become ASEAN halal haven

Photo courtesy of Bangkok Post

Thailand‘s Industry Ministry, under the dynamic leadership of Minister Pimpattra Wichaikul, is set to revolutionise the nation into an ASEAN Halal hub.

The minister is gearing up for a high-stakes meeting with Saudi Arabian officials, the powerhouse behind the world’s colossal halal markets.

Scheduled to confer with the Saudi Standards, Metrology and Quality Organization (SASO), Pimpattra is on a mission to fortify consumer trust in halal products across Saudi Arabia and the Middle East, stated Aditad Vasinonta, the director-general of the Department of Primary Industries and Mines.

Earlier this week, the industry minister made waves by unveiling the ministry’s ambitious blueprint – the establishment of a dedicated halal department, poised to catapult the industry’s growth in Thailand’s Deep South. The grand vision extends further with the government’s pursuit of uplifting lives through a groundbreaking Halal Economic Corridor, spanning key provinces and districts, including Yala, Pattani, Narathiwat, Satun, and Songkhla’s Na Thawi, Saba Yoi, Chana, and Thepa.

Pimpattra, a staunch advocate for transformative change, envisions the halal department as a catalyst for diversifying halal offerings. The department is set to pave the way for innovative halal products and services, encompassing not only new culinary delights for the Muslim community but also venturing into the realms of halal fashion and tourism.

Proponents anticipate that the surge in halal-related businesses will propel the industrial sector’s GDP by a staggering 1.2% within three years, according to the Ministry of Industry.

Industry insiders are bullish on the global halal market, predicting a meteoric rise to a staggering US$2.32 trillion (approximately 8.04 trillion baht) in 2024, up from US$2.1 trillion last year. Notably, Thailand’s export of halal food, valued at 213 billion baht in 2022, secured a 2.7% share in the world market, with a substantial 78% representing natural halal food and the remaining portion requiring halal certification, reported Bangkok Post.

As Industry Minister Pimpattra embarks on her crucial meeting with SASO officials, it is poised to be a game-changer for Thailand’s foray into the lucrative halal market. The undisclosed discussions in Riyadh will unfold as part of her participation in the Future Minerals Forum, a prestigious international ministerial gathering from January 9 to 11, emphasising the critical role of minerals in clean energy development.

Bangkok NewsPolitics NewsThailand News

Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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