‘Sahaf 2013’ Began-Potential of Halal Industry Presented

[wzslider]By: Nevena Šarenac

The ceremonial ribbon cutting took place in the Sarajevo Center “Skenderija”, which opened the first international halal fair and forum ‘Sahaf 2013”, where around 30 companies in their full capacity presented the potential of the halal industry.

‘Sahaf 2013’ is a unique event in BiH and in the region, and it was said that this event would not be possible without vision, enthusiasm, energy and the selfless commitment of the organizers of the fair: GHB Invest, Center Skenderija and the Agency for Certification of Halal Quality.

On behalf of the organizers, the participants were wished a warm welcome by a representative of GHB Invest Seid Alibegović, who said that the idea for organizing such a fair and forum was the result of years of aspirations by people to live better and more freely.

“For the future to be brighter, positive processes have to be launched that would bring to a change in awareness for a large portion of the population, and these changes involve education on new development trends and potentials, changes in the quality of products that we consume everyday. We think that a change in awareness when it comes to halal quality represents a huge potential for development, which could significantly contribute to the realization of our vision of economic and social development’’, said Alibegović.

Describing ‘Sahaf 2013’ as a unique event that gathers representatives of the halal industry from South East Europe in one place, world leaders in the halal industry and multinational companies, Alibegović expressed hope that this fair would become a tradition.

The host of ‘Sahaf 2013’, the Director of Skenderija Center Hajriz Bećirović stressed that the fair is a unique opportunity of direct representation of products and services and direct communication of experts and all those involved in this area, and he added that many will be following the program, which will be useful to all participants and visitors.

The Agency for Certification of Halal Quality in BiH has gained a reputation in international halal circles and finds itself at the top for the recognition of the quality of its work. The Director Amir Sakić recalled that the halal industry in BiH has been developing since 2006, noting that so far they have received significant results.

Speaking on the system of halal certification in BiH, he noted that there are several characteristics.

“It functions based on a single halal standard, followed by a single procedure and all manufacturers have to meet unique criteria’’, specified Sakić, emphasizing that the criteria for obtaining halal certification in BiH fully comply with the latest recommendation and halal standards of the Organization of the Islamic Conference.

“The halal industry that will be presented at ‘Sahaf 2013’ has fully met all requirements that can be found in any halal market’’, said Sakić.

Guests were addressed by the President of the BiH Foreign Trade Chamber Ismet Kumalić, who thinks that this fair shows that ‘Sarajevo can be a place that understands and a place in which we can meet with a completely different culture, which comes from a different market’’.

‘’This is a confirmation that Sarajevo is a European miracle, for which we should be proud of’’, concluded Kumalić.

The official opening of the fair was enhanced by the presence of the FBiH Minister of Energy, Mining and Industry Erdal Trhulj, who thinks that the goal of ‘Sahaf 2013’, among other things, is to create opportunities and possibilities for BiH business people from the halal industry in traditional halal markets.

“I am certain that ‘Sahaf 2013’ will result in the establishment of business cooperation between BiH and foreign participants, and would bring new investments in the halal industry sector and create new jobs’’, said Minister Trhulj.

He stressed that BiH is recognized as the largest single halal market in South East Europe, adding that the organization of ‘Sahaf’ in Sarajevo is of great importance to the city center so that this city and BiH would become the center of the halal industry in this part of Europe.

‘Sahaf 2013’ will be open until 17 May.

The general sponsor of ‘Sahaf’ fair is members of the BiH Presidency Bakir Izetbegović and reisu-l-ulema of the Islamic Community in BiH Husein ef. Kavazović.

Portal ‘Sarajevo Times’ is one of the media partners of the ‘Sahaf’ fair.

The entrance fee for visitors is one KM. Entrance is free for organized groups, given that the organizers of the fair are given prior notice.

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