By Gokhan Ergocun
Turkey’s first halal accreditation agency will serve Muslims across the world when it opens, Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci said Thursday.
The agency, which is due to be opened later this year, will aim to service the $3.9 trillion global market for halal products.
“The demands of a global Muslim population of 1.8 billion for halal products and their certification is incrementally increasing,” Zeybekci told the World Halal Summit Istanbul.
The minister said demand for halal products, which are produced according to Islamic law as defined in the Quran, could not be satisfied solely by Muslim nations.
“But we can produce much more than today’s level,” he said. “All of the tasks of determining standards, setting up assessment and evaluation systems and certifying procedures for halal products should be done by Muslim countries.”
Turkey has the technical capability to provide this for the Muslim world, he added.
Last month, the Turkish government submitted a proposal to parliament for establishing the agency, which would be the only one of its kind in the country but able to establish overseas branches.
Halal accreditation agencies enforce standards, protect halal consumers and boost international trade.
In a written statement to the summit, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said managing halal certification through a single agency was important for Muslims around the world.
The summit and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation Halal Expo began Thursday. Anadolu Agency is the global communications partner and more than 200 firms and brands are participating.
High-level speakers from more than 80 countries will discuss issues surrounding halal food, pharmacy and medicine as well as Islamic finance, tourism and textiles until Saturday.