Brunei can excel in halal pharma sectorsqwcgadmin
14th May, 2016
THE halal pharmaceuticals industry is one of the key industries that can be developed in the Sultanate.
According to Dr Mohammed Issa, CEO of the US-based Noor Pharmaceuticals, Brunei already has a head start in this sector.
“You were the first country to introduce halal pharmaceutical guidelines at a point in time and we in the Americas used your guidelines to get started,” Dr Mohammed said in a speech delivered at yesterday’s International Food and Biotech Investment Conference.
The guidelines, which were created to attract investments in halal pharmaceuticals, cover several stages of the manufacturing process, ensuring that everything from the ingredients to the facilities are Syariah-compliant.
The guidelines were put together by several government agencies including the Brunei Islamic Religious Council, the Islamic Religious Council Office, the Department of Syariah Affairs and the Islamic Legal Unit of the Ministry of Religious Affairs, the State Mufti’s Office from the Prime Minister’s Office, the Department of Agriculture and Agrifood from the Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources, the Department of Pharmaceutical Services from the Ministry of Health and the Brunei Economic Development Board.
Dr Mohammed said Brunei’s resources and strategic location will allow it to excel in the halal pharmaceuticals industry. But he said the Sultanate needs to expand its research and development in order to make high-quality and innovative medicines and supplements.
He added it’s important for any business to be “value-based” as customers prefer to buy the best product in market. Being halal should just be an added value.
“We don’t commercialise and produce and say that our products are just halal. We say that they are the best products in their category that happen to be halal,” Dr Mohammed said, alluding to the range of halal vitamins and supplements produced by Noor Pharmaceuticals.
Brunei is currently eyeing to export halal pharmaceuticals to Muslim markets in Asia through Simpor Pharma.
The company is a $26 million joint-venture among Canadian Firm Viva Pharmaceutical Inc, private equity fund Aureous (Brunei) Capital Sdn Bhd and a group of local investors.
In a previous report, an official from Simpor Pharma said that the plant was established by Viva Canada as a base for expanding its product range into Muslim countries, and had selected Brunei due to its political stability.
Source: Brunei News