Kuala Lumpur, October 2 – Majlis Amanah Rakyat (MARA) and CIMB Islamic today have individually signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Shapers Malaysia Sdn Bhd (SHAPERS) to solidify their partnership for Halal Fiesta Malaysia or HALFEST 2012.

Created to support the development of the local Halal industry, HALFEST offers the best platform for small-medium enterprise (SMEs) from all over the country to showcase their Halal products. This year marks the event’s second outing after a successful inaugural show in 2011 that attracted more than 50,000 visitors.

“After a successful HALFEST 2011, the first consumer focused Halal expo has far exceeded our expectations. It has proven that the public-private sector partnership such as this is much needed in the industry as it helps to provide the entrepreneurs the support and platform for them to reach a bigger audience and expand their businesses”, said Y.Bhg Datuk Ibrahim Ahmad, Director General of MARA. The partnership will also further cement the dedication of the private and public sectors to further develop the industry.

Datuk Ibrahim Ahmad added, “It is our mission to assist micro enterprises not only in the city but also those from rural Malaysia, and develop them to meet consumer demands in Malaysia and eventually be export-ready.”

Badlisyah Abdul Ghani, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, CIMB Islamic, said, “We are extremely pleased to continue our support for HALFEST 2012 after achieving positive results from the first show in 2011. Through our Islamic finance and banking solutions, CIMB Islamic has the right tools to help local entrepreneurs manage their finances the Islamic way and grow their business with confidence. We hope that this partnership will continue in the future to show our commitment in developing the local Halal industry to achieve greater expansion.”

HALFEST aims to promote Halal products manufactured by the local companies from around Malaysia and to inculcate Halal lifestyle amongst Malaysian consumers. Through its platform and various programmes scheduled throughout HALFEST, the local entrepreneurs will be able to expand their branding and market reach to the entire Malaysian market and grow to be export-ready.

Badlisyah Abdul Ghani also emphasised in his speech that, “We would like to see more of our entrepreneurs be part of this endeavour and take the advantage of all that is provided by the combined efforts of all the partners that came together with the same aim to help them achieve success in the Halal industry.”

The dual signing ceremony was witnessed by Y.Bhg Dato’ Seri Jamil Bidin CEO of Halal Industry Development Corporation (HDC), and Dato’ Haji Othman Bin Mustapha, Director General of Malaysia Department of Islamic Development (JAKIM).

HALFEST 2012 will be held from 10-14 October 2012 at PWTC, Kuala Lumpur. HALFEST is brought by CIMB Islamic Bank Berhad, hosted by Halal Industry Development Corporation (HDC), co-organised by Majlis Amanah Rakyat (MARA) with esteemed partner Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM), and is supported by Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-based Industry (MOA), Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperative and Consumerism (KPDNKK) Muslim Consumers Association of Malaysia (PPIM) and strategic partner, RTM.

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