Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Halal Product Assurance Agency (BPJPH) of the Religious Affairs Ministry is exploring cooperation with the United Kingdom for mutual recognition of halal certifications, following similar collaborations with other foreign halal institutions.

"We aim to become the number one producer of the world's halal industry. One of them is by establishing halal product guarantee (JPH) cooperation with other countries," BPJPH head Aqil Irham said in a statement released by his office on Thursday.

The plan for the cooperation emerged during his meeting with the British Ambassador to Indonesia, Dominic Jermey, at the BPJPH Office in Jakarta.

At the meeting, Irham conveyed his commitment to strengthen and accelerate JPH's international cooperation to generate a positive impact for the industrial sector and halal product trade.

He also lauded the British government and its halal community for their concern for halal product guarantee regulations in Indonesia. Their concern is evident from seven Overseas Halal Institutions (LHLNs) from the UK applying for BPJPH accreditation.

"Based on Halal Information System (SIHALAL) data, there are seven LHLNs from England who have applied for accreditation. Their status ranges from waiting for verification to ready for assessment," Irham said.

He informed that BPJPH is also planning to carry out an on-site audit of the seven LHLNs and immediately put together a mutual recognition agreement (MRA) on halal certificates between BPJPH and LHLNs from England.

Ambassador Jermey also expressed the hope that cooperation on halal product guarantees between the two countries would be established soon.

"This is my first meeting with BPJPH. We want to learn anything that we can offer to help accelerate this economic cooperation process, especially regulations in halal products governance and opportunities in the future," he said.

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Translator: Asep Firmansyah, Resinta Sulistiyandari
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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