Vietnamese Exports Eye Opportunities in Malaysia's $7-Trillion Halal Industry
Vietnam is actively seeking opportunities to enter Malaysia’s lucrative $7-trillion Halal market by exporting food products to its Muslim-majority neighbor. During the official visit of Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim to Vietnam, Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh expressed Vietnam’s readiness to become a sustainable and long-term rice provider to Malaysia. Additionally, Vietnam is keen on receiving Malaysia’s assistance in developing its own Halal industry and is willing to sign memorandums of understanding to facilitate this collaboration.
Malaysian businesses have shown great enthusiasm for potential cooperation in the Halal food industry. Angus Liew Bing Fooi, Vice President of the Malaysia Business Chamber Vietnam, emphasized the importance of both countries expediting progress to seize the opportunities presented by increased partnership in the Halal food industry. Over the past 50 years of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and Malaysia (1973-2023), a solid foundation has been established for collaboration in various sectors, including oil and gas, electronics, automotive, tourism, renewable energy, and Halal, which refers to food and beverages permissible for consumption by Muslims.
Southeast Asia boasts the largest Muslim population globally, with approximately 277 million people. Malaysia, with over 60% of its population being Muslims, has a Halal industry that contributes around 7.5% to its GDP, according to World Bank data. Vietnam possesses strengths in food production and exports, making it an ideal partner, while Malaysia can provide expertise on obtaining Halal certificates for Vietnamese exporters. Furthermore, Malaysia can assist Vietnam in accessing Halal markets in Southeast Asia, the Middle East, and other parts of the world.
The global Halal market is valued at $7 trillion and is projected to reach $10 trillion by 2028. Anwar Ibrahim’s visit to Vietnam marks an important milestone in Vietnam-Malaysia relations, potentially paving the way for further business partnerships in the future. Malaysia is Vietnam’s second-largest trading partner in ASEAN and ranks ninth globally. Bilateral trade between the two countries reached $14.68 billion in 2021, marking a 17.4% increase compared to the previous year. Both Prime Ministers have agreed to target a bilateral trade figure of $18 billion by 2025.