As Tokyo prepares to host the Summer Games in four years, Tetsuya Otsuru, director of the ministry’s economic policy division, said the event would draw an influx of Muslim visitors to Japan.
As the country has a limited tradition in providing halal food, Otsuru said it had much to learn from Muslim countries, with a focus adopting the standards of Middle East or southeast Asian countries with more experience in halal certification.
“Japanese restaurant businesses may think such Middle East certification, for example from the UAE, would mean something and will ease the process of obtaining halal certificates from Muslim countries in Asean including Brunei and Malaysia,” he told journalists.
“But at the moment, there have not been any concrete steps yet, but we do need to create and increase dialogue even with our private sector companies, for example on Brunei halal certificates in the future,” Otsuru said.
Another official said there would be a cost for Japanese companies to secure appropriate certification.
“So we will try to give them financial support. And also we try to support them so that they can set up facilities for the processing or treatment of halal meat,” Mie Katsun of the Food Industry Affairs bureau, said.