Bratislava, Slovakia (ANTARA) - Indonesian Vice President Ma’ruf Amin has invited halal industry businesspeople to visit Indonesia to explore trade and investment opportunities for halal products.

“I also invite Slovak businesspeople to visit Indonesia, including attending the Halal Expo 2024, to explore trade and investment opportunities of halal products,” Amin said during a meeting with the Islamic Foundation of Slovakia and local halal industry players in Bratislava, Slovakia, on Sunday.

Amin expressed hope for halal industry operators in Slovakia to remain committed to running halal businesses amid various limiting factors.

He noted that the Muslim population in Slovakia is one of the smallest in Europe, accounting for less than 1 percent of its total population.

As a result, according to Amin, several challenges are faced in the development of halal businesses in the country, such as the availability of halal products, the limited number of halal industry businesspeople, and regulatory and halal certification constraints.

However, he mentioned that Slovakia has significant potential to produce halal products and has the potential to become a hub for the halal industry in Central Europe and surrounding regions.

The VP also affirmed that Indonesia is willing to encourage collaboration in halal product development and share the knowledge of the industry with Slovakia.

He explained that the Muslim population in Europe has reached 50.3 million people, making Islam the second-largest religion in Europe.

With such a substantial Muslim population, there is a significant and sustained demand for halal products, Amin added.

Citing a 2021 report on the global Islamic economy, Amin mentioned that Muslims worldwide spend around US$2 trillion on food, medicine, cosmetics, fashion, travel, and media. By 2025, the amount is estimated to reach US$2.8 trillion.

“These numerous halal products are not only targeted at Muslims. Non-Muslim consumers also favor the halal lifestyle because it guarantees cleanliness, safety, and health. Therefore, accelerating the issuance of halal certification is crucial,” he said.

Accompanying Amin during the meeting were the Indonesian Ambassador to Slovakia, Pribadi Sutiono, and several high-ranking Indonesian officials.

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Translator: Anton Santoso
Editor: Bayu Prasetyo
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