News From : DagangHalal.com (16 Nov 2009)
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 16 (Bernama) — CIMB Islamic Bank Bhd is prepared to invest RM1.5 billion in a move to help small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the halal industry.
CIMB Islamic’s chief executive officer Badlisyah Abdul Ghani said this was due to the proven success of the segment which started in late 2006 with a zero base.
“From zero base, we are now generating close to RM2 million. This is because of our aggressiveness in helping SMEs,” he said.
He was speaking to the reporters after launching the CIMB Islamic and Halal Industry Development Corporation (HDC) Financial Advisory Services Programme here Monday.
Also present was HDC’s chief executive officer Datuk Seri Jamil Bidin.
Asked about the sales target from the collaboration, Badlisyah said the partnership was an ongoing process and for the moment, no specific target had been set.
“But our indirect intention as a bank is to secure SMEs in the halal industry which are not our clients and supporting all the SMEs in the industry at large,” he said.
Jamil said most Malaysians have the wrong impression that Malaysia is the number one player in the halal industry globally.
Malaysia, he said, is only the leader in the certification and standard process.
“This does not contribute much to the nation’s economy as the government wants the SMEs to be one of its key economy drivers, like their counterparts in neighbouring countries,” he added.
Jamil said the halal food global market is estimated worth US$635 billion this year and this is expected to increase to US$642 billion next year.
“Our halal industry players can capture the market provided they are willing to go global,” he said.
Asked about the relevancy of Islamic banking to the industry as the government is already giving out loans to help the SMEs, Jamil said the loans helped them to survive in the domestic market but not enough to market globally.
According to him, the Islamic banking system is the final solution for halal industry players and it is a better option than the coventional banking system.
The one-day Financial Advisory Services Programme featured advisory talks and personalised consultations for SMEs in the halal industry.
Selected SMEs were also able to showcase, promote and market their halal products and services at booths provided.