Experts at a seminar have suggested establishing a halal certification body in the country to help manufacturers grab a slice of the trillion-dollar global halal food market.
Bangladesh can gain a share of the global halal food market with its agro-processed food products, beverages, cosmetics and pharmaceutical items, they said.
They also urged the government to provide credit facility and tax incentives for the private sector to facilitate the production and export of halal foods.
The government should also develop infrastructure and develop a globally acclaimed halal food certification system for the growth in export of halal foods, they added.
The Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) organised the seminar entitled 'Ensuring safe and halal food: Present context and necessary measures' at its office in the city on Saturday.
The speakers told the seminar that the global consumption value of halal food has been increasing with 8.14 per cent average growth rate annually.
The halal food market will register a 6.1 per cent compound annual growth rate in terms of revenue over the next five years, they said.
The global halal market is around US$2.1 trillion, which makes up 11.9 per cent of the world expenditure, the seminar revealed.
Globally, the Muslim nations spent $ 1.3 trillion in 2017 for food and beverages, the speakers said.
Brazil, Australia, New Zealand and Thailand are leading exporters of halal products, they said.
The speakers also urged the UAE to assist Bangladesh technically and financially in gaining a significant portion of the global halal food market.
They also called on the government to allocate 10 economic zones, out of the 100 special zones, for the halal food industry.
Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in Dhaka Saed Mohammed Al-Muhairi said the popularity of halal foods and other consumer items has been rising even among non-Muslim population around the world, considering the hygienic aspects and healthy benefits of halal foods.
He expressed the hope that Bangladesh would soon enter not only the UAE market but also other parts of global market of halal products.
DCCI President Osama Taseer said agricultural and food products are the second largest export-oriented sector in Bangladesh.
He sought policy support for the halal food sector and urged the government to provide support for the private sector to conduct research and build their capacity.
Director General of Islamic Foundation Bangladesh Shamim Mohammad Afzal and chairman of Bangladesh Food Safety Authority Syeda Sarwar Jahan, Conformity Director of RACS, Dubai, Dr. Samia Abdellatif and DCCI Vice President Imran Ahmed also spoke.
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