DAVAO CITY – The institutionalization of the certification of halal products in the country will not push through unless the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of Republic Act 10817 is completed and implemented.
This was the point raised by Malou Ampuan of the Mindanao Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MICCI) when interviewed by reporters here on Wednesday.
RA 10817 was signed into law by former President Benigno S. Aquino in May last year.
The law, Ampuan said, will ensure the quality, marketability and the ability of halal products of the Philippines to compete in local and world markets.
RA 10817 or the Halal Export Development and Promotional Act will set the National Certification Scheme and Standard of halal products in the Philippines, she added.
DTI, the law said, will head the Halal Export Development and Promotional Board (EDPB) tasked to oversee the halal development and promotion programs in the country.
Under the law, EDPB is also tasked to receive donations, grants, endowments and contributions from local and foreign sources to help promote and develop the halal industry in the country.
She said the IRR is a vital component to make Philippine halal products competitive to the markets in Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and in BIMP-EAGA (Brunei Darussalam Indonesia Malaysia Philippines East Asia Growth Area).
Halal now stands as USD2.6 trillion-industry worldwide.
With the trend of globalization, Ampuan said halal will become one of the major industries in the Philippines.
“We are calling the DTI to finish the IRR now as the country is establishing links to world markets,” Ampuan said.
She cited the recent opening of the ASEAN Roll-On-Roll-Off (RORO) route between the Philippines and Indonesia.
She added that the trends in connectivity within ASEAN and BIMP-EAGA countries tell the need to strengthen the country’s halal industry.
The industry can only be strengthened when the official standards for certification embodied in an IRR is realized, she said.
At present, Ampuan said five groups are recognized in the country to certify halal products.
The five recognized groups include the Islamic Dawa Council of the Philippines (IDCP); the Halal Development Institute of the Philippines (HDIP); Mindanao Halal Authority (MINHA); Muslim Mindanao Halal Certification Board (MMHCB); and the Halal International Chamber of Commerce (HICCP).
The recognition of these groups, Ampuan said, is extended up to two years while the IRR of RA 10817 is not yet completed. (davaotoday.com)