LAHORE: By the grace of Almighty, Pakistan has abundant natural resources including; a 100 percent Halal livestock value chain ranked as the 4th largest Livestock population in the world, with over 180 million animals and skilled human resources to provide Certified Halal products and raw materials to the global Halal Meat industry.
This was stated by the Chairman of Punjab Halal Development Agency(PHDA), Justice (R) Khalilur Rehman, in an exclusive interview. Justice (R) Khalilur Rehman has also served as the President of Lahore High Court Bar Association, as a judge and as the Chief Justice of Lahore High Court (LHC). He also remained as a judge in the Supreme Court of Pakistan, besides serving as the Chairman Shariat Appellate Bench and the Director of International Islamic University Islamabad. He had also been working as Memeber Shariat Board in the State Bank of Pakistan and Chairman Shariah Advisory Board of Al Barak Bank of Bahrain.
During the interview, Justice Khalil said that; Keeping in view the realities, it is practicable to tap a major share from the rapidly growing global Halal Market by projecting and developing Pakistan as the hub of Halal food and branding its products in the international markets.
At the current emerging stage, the trade of Halal products is around US$ 3.0 trillion in the global Halal Markets, in which Pakistan has a share of only $29 million, which can be expanded rapidly in diversified areas including; meat and bye-products, milk and allied industries, financing, tourism, hoteling, beverages, cosmetics, confectionary, pharmaceutical and personal care, etc.
He also said that; PHDA had framed a draft to make a legislation on the import and export of halal products. The violater of this law should be awarded imprisonment of upto three years with penalty ranging from Rs. 100,000 up to Rupees one million. The draft of the legislation is ready and will soon be presented in the federal cabinet for its approval and then in the National Assembly. After the formation of this Halal Act, the PHDA would be a certification body which will monitor the requirements for export.
The Chairman commenting about the PHDA said that the Punjab Halal Development Agency is an organization operated by the provincial Government of Punjab. PHDA has been created to formalize the Halal sector i.e. Halal Products’ certifications, Halal business projection, capacity building, compliance regime of Halal food safety standards, together with branding Pakistan as the “Halal Hub” of the world.
Talking about the objectives of the PHDA, he said that; It strives to give a boost to the Halal Industry of Pakistan, especially Halal Meat. It is also going to create a unique platform to galvanize Halal exporters, who still need support to enter into the International Halal markets. Finally, the Chairman said that; Our mission is to promote compliance of prescribed Halal standards and certification systems in the light of the Shariah advisory services.