INDONESIA March 2019
 
Indonesian government to provide free Halal Certification to Micro SMEs
 
The Indonesian government is drafting new regulations to provide free halal certification for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), said President Joko Widodo.
President Joko said that street food vendors have requested for Halal certification, and the government will ensure that Halal certification process for the MSMEs will take only one day and will be free of charge.
President Jokowi added that the drafting process of the regulation is underway and the government will pay attention to every specific issue related to small and micro businesses to avoid any problems in the future.
This comes after Indonesia’s decision to push back its October 2018 deadline for Halal labelling on all food, drugs and cosmetics to another 7 years, after the industry voiced concerns that the move could threaten supplies, particularly for life-saving medical products.
In 2014, Indonesia adopted a compulsory measure for labels to certify whether products are Halal, and if they are not labelled as Halal, they will face sales bans and this compulsory labelling deadline is by October 2018. However, a presidential decree giving industries a transition period of several years to comply with the law now awaits President Joko Widodo's signature.
This postponement will allow the proper building of infrastructure and the process to run smoothly and reach every corners of Indonesia. The food industry will be given a deadline until 2024 to get Halal certificates, said Ir. Sukoso, the Chief of the Halal Product Assurance Body (BPJPH), but he declined to give a date for compliance by the drugs industry.
Getting Halal certification is costly as overseas businesses have to fly auditors from the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) to factories overseas to check that raw materials or steps in manufacturing meet the Halal requirements. In addition, MUI Halal certificates are also recognised by only a few countries unlike Malaysia’s JAKIM Halal certificates.
 
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