News From : DagangHalal.com (11 Nov 2009)
KUCHING, Nov 11 (Bernama) — Trade cooperation between Malaysia and Bosnia Herzegovina is still lacking although both countries have very good political ties, said former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
He said Bosnia Herzegovina as a Muslim country in Europe had the potential to be the gateway to European Union (EU) markets, expecially for halal food products.
“There’s not much Malaysian investment in Bosnia Herzegovina although we have very good political relations with that country,” he said after attending the Malaysia Global Trade Forum at the Borneo Convention Centre here Wednesday. Also present at the forum was Bosnia Herzegovina President Dr Haris Silajdzic.
Dr Mahathir said besides tourism, Bosnia Herzegovina was also known for its quality mineral water sources.
He said the transportation factor, expecially air tranport, and the absence of a port in Bosnia Herzegovina were the main problems faced by Malaysian investors in establishng more trade with that country.
“To get to Bosnia, we have to first fly to Istanbul for the connecting flight as there is no direct flight between Kuala Lumpur and Sarajevo, and as the country does not have a port, it depends on the ports of neighbouring Croatia.”
Dr Mahathir said Malaysia should look at the transportation problem more seriously so that those involved in the industry would capitalise on the existing good relations between the two countries.
The Sarawak government today signed eight memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with Bosnia Herzegovina on cooperation in the production of halal products, in education, technology and certification of fire-fighting equipment.
Dr Mahathir, Dr Silajdzic and Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud witnessed the signing of the MoUs.