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Stakeholders rally Nigeria to $2.7tr halal economy

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Leveraging on the high Muslim population nationwide, stakeholders have urged the Nigerian business community to tap into the international halal market to deepen the local economy.

The halal economy, currently valued at $2.7trillion, is a potential driver of diverse sectors of the local economy before the food industry.

Executive Director of Abuja Trade Centre (ATC), Jude Chime, told reporters in Lagos yesterday that the halal economy is a huge sector that has remained largely untapped in Nigeria.

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Chime observed that Nigeria has about 100 million Muslims, which is an edge in the global Muslim community and cooperation. 

“If you go to countries like Morocco, they have about 80 million Muslims but they are currently benefitting from the halal economy. Currently, they are exporting to over 23 countries courtesy of the halal industry. Malaysia is doing over $7 billion in halal food and beverage. So, those are the opportunities that we need to tap into. It is not that we are competing, but we have to collaborate with the rest of the world to get into the halal market.

“We need to promote our SMEs too. We have to further encourage them to go into exportation, to go into manufacturing halal food, to export to the other parts of the world. The halal economy as of 2017 was worth over $2.2 trillion, but now it is about $2.7 trillion.

“So, it is a very huge economy. These are opportunities that the chamber is trying to position the various stakeholders to look at. This is one of the essences of having an exhibition. Currently, we have visited, as part of the consultation a whole lot of stakeholders in the industry,” he said.

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He said it was for this reason that the first halal conference and exhibition had been scheduled to hold in Abuja in June to raise awareness.

“If you check now, probably if you go to some companies, I don’t want to mention their names, they have what we call the halal certification, and that is part of what we are also trying to project.

“To coordinate the halal economy by providing a platform, which is the exhibition and conference where all stakeholders would meet to look at how best Nigeria can benefit from this industry.”

The expo would attract visitors from about 30 countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, the United Arab Emirates, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Korea, Thailand, Bangladesh, Morocco, Algeria, among others.  

Chime added that the exhibition would avail new opportunities for investments in consumer electronics, ICT products, household products, electrical appliances, fashion and accessories, digital and IT consumer products, interior, and home décor.

Others are craft items, foods, health and fitness, personal care, body spa fragrance, travel and tourism, handicraft, eco-friendly products, technology innovation, education, tourism, media, pharmaceutical products, and cosmetics.

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