Istanbul is scheduled to host the Fifth Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Halal Expo and World Halal Summit, organized in cooperation with the Standards and Metrology Institute for the Islamic Countries (SMIIC) and the Islamic Center for Development of Trade (ICDT), which will be held at Istanbul Lütfi Kırdar International Convention and Exhibition Center on Nov. 23-25. Evaluating the world halal market and Turkey's potential, Yunus Ete, the chairman of the World Halal Summit Council, said with the efforts of the government and the private sector it is possible to raise Turkey's share in the world halal market from $100 billion to $400 billion in a short period of time.
Ete noted that the world halal sector is approaching $4 trillion with $2 trillion in Islamic finance products such as participation banking, payment systems and insurance, $1 trillion in halal food, $250 billion in halal tourism, and the rest in instruments such as halal medicine, halal cosmetics and halal textile.
Ete said Islamic finance products are used extensively in countries such as the U.K., Switzerland, Malaysia, Bahrain, Dubai and Saudi Arabia and reach high figures.
He suggested the interest especially in the developing Muslim countries in Islamic finance products has increased, and that in recent years, various financial products have been created in this area.
Ete said participation banks constitute 5 percent of the Turkish banking sector, informing that the asset size of five participation banks in Turkey reached TL 150 billion ($38 billion) by the end of September.
"With regard to participation banking, insurance and other products, we can say that the Islamic finance market has reached $55 billion in Turkey, which means we have a 4 percent share of the global Islamic finance system," he said.
Ete said countries such as Brazil, Australia, Malaysia and the U.K. lead the way in the $1-trillion world halal food market, and that Turkey's share in this is around 5 percent.
Pointing out that livestock products, meat and poultry come to the fore in halal food, Ete said halal food certification is important for products containing additives.
"Halal certificates are sought for sugary products and beverages. A halal certificate is an opportunity to show the level of health especially in the products containing additives," Ete said, adding, "Thus, halal certified products can be sold to non-Muslims, as well."
He suggested that through the Halal Accreditation Authority (HAK), the Ministry of Economy can check the companies issuing halal certificates abroad about whether they take into account the Standards and Metrology Institute for the Islamic Countries (SMIIC) standards, a subsidiary of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), regarding the halal certificate system.
Ete also noted that if the certificate organizations operating in Turkey work in harmony with these standards and if the previous incompatibilities of halal certification are prevented, the share Turkey will get from the halal food sector and its exports in this regard will increase by 100 percent.
Ete said projects have slowly begun in the other halal sectors in Turkey. "In recent years in our country with the pioneering of our government, very serious studies have been conducted on the halal sector. But we are still behind. Turkey's share of the world's halal sector varies between 2 percent and 5 percent. Our country's share of the Islamic market is around $100 billion, including especially $55 billion in Islamic finance products," Ete continued. "We can bring the total share of the world halal market to 10 percent, $400 billion, thanks to the new policies of our government and the efforts of the private sector. So, in a short time we can reach $400 billion from $100 billion with an increase of 300 percent." He also added that more than 7,500 people and over 150 top brands, institutions and organizations from more than 80 countries operating in the fields of halal food, Islamic tourism, Islamic finance, chemistry, cosmetics, medicine and pharmaceuticals are expected to participate in the expo and summit.
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