KUALA LUMPUR — Malaysia’s leadership role in developing the Halal industry marked a major milestone today with the signing of a strategic collaboration agreement between the Halal Industry Development Corporation (HDC) and AJ Pharma Holdings to develop a platform for R&D in the process of developing halal vaccines.
The agreement follows an effort to promote the development of halal vaccines initiated through a joint study conducted by AJ Pharma Holdings and HDC on “The Global Market Potential for Halal Vaccines” in 2014. The study verified that opportunities exist for countries to invest and intensify R&D to develop halal pharmaceuticals, including vaccines for the growing Muslim population worldwide.
YAB Dato’ Seri Dr. Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia, officiated and witnessed the document exchange of the collaborative agreement between the parties. Also present were the Minister of International Trade and Industry, Y.B. Dato’ Sri Mustapa Mohamed; Minister II of International Trade and Industry, Y.B. Dato’ Seri Ong Ka Chuan; and the Chairman of HDC, YBhg. Tan Sri Dato’ Dr. Syed Jalaludin Syed Salim. The agreement was signed by HDC’s Chief Executive Officer, YBhg. Dato’ Seri Jamil Bidin, and AJ Pharma Holdings’s Managing Director, Dr. Tabassum Khan.
YAB. Dato’ Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid, in his address, said that over the past few decades, Malaysia has put in place an eco-system that has helped nurture the growth of halal-related initiatives. “The Government has also provided the necessary infrastructure, incentives, policies and support services to attract investments and promote trade in the halal industry,” he said.
At a Forum on Halal Initiatives in Healthcare Industry being held concurrently, Dato’ Sri Mustapa said that Malaysia’s halal industry attracted investments worth RM 8.5 billion as at December 2014. “These halal projects are located in 14 HalMas Status Halal Parks throughout the country and created more than 5,473 employment opportunities,” he said.
Dato’ Sri Mustapa added that Malaysia’s exports of halal pharmaceuticals were valued at RM 509.8 million in 2014, compared with RM 407.2 million in 2013. “The major export destinations in 2014 were USA, Singapore, Nigeria, Hong Kong and The People’s Republic of China,” he said.
The topics discussed at the forum included the regulatory perspective in developing an equitable halal pharmaceutical industry, addressing the controversial issues surrounding general opinions on Halal vaccines and aspects of immunization.