Tanjung Manis designated world’s leading halal zone

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Tanjung Manis Halal Hub (Tanjung Manis) is poised to become the world’s lead­ing halal zone with its commit­ment to green development and the promotion of downstream activities to feed of it.

According to its executive chairman Datuk Norah Tun Abdul Rahman, the halal hub would set the global standards for agriculture-based industries, research and halal products.

“It will practice green develop­ment in every aspect of develop­ment, which is quite different from other halal hubs and food production centres.

“We are at the stage of deveo­ping a comprehensive master plan to this effect that is sched­uled to be completed by year end,” she added.

Being an advanced halal hub, Tanjung Manis had the advantage of downstream and upstream value chains, where the availability of raw materials for food production via agricul­ture and aquaculture were its key advantages.

“Others are merely focusing on mid value chain activities such as food processing when we have the end to end solutions in an integrated development,” said Norah.

Tanjung Manis in Sarawak was a core part of the SCORE initiatives, established with the aim of promoting halal products and services as well as addressing regional food security issues.

The hub spread across 77,000 hectares of land located on the western-most area of the SCORE landscape, which stretched over 320 kilometres east.

On top of that, access to the zone had been made easier with improvements to road networks and the construction of world-class facilities and a nearby airport.

“Tanjung Manis is positioned to be the Food & Agriculture Special Economic Zone (SEZ) of SCORE,” said Norah.

“The hub will assist the Sarawak economy by producing raw materials for food products such as fish, prawn, corn and maize for the local and interna­tional markets.”

She further added, “This will help to reduce import bills.

“The hub is intended to ad­dress the food security issue affecting the world right now, which is, witnessing a food shortage due to natural disasters and the shifting from agricul­ture to other developments such as those seen in Thailand and Vietnam.” On the investment front, she said that Tanjung Ma­nis was also an ideal destination for Middle Eastern investors.

“Arab nations are the largest net importers of food and cereal in the world due to land scarcity issues and the dwindling avail­ability of arable land that’s suitable for agriculture world­wide. We have received many enquiries such as integrated prawn farming, stevia planta­tion and corn plantation,” she pointed out.

Apart from attracting foreign investors, the halal hub was also expected to create massive job opportunities for the locals.

“In terms of providing job op­portunities to many agriculture graduates in Malaysia, Tanjung Manis will also offer more jobs relating to their qualifications,” she added.