China is interested in collaborating with Malaysia in the halal industry, covering certification, services, and halal products, said Deputy Foreign Minister Datuk Mohamad Alamin.


He said the matter was conveyed by Premier Li Qiang during a meeting with Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi during the latter's official visit to China recently.


"During a courtesy call on Premier Li Qiang, the Deputy Prime Minister took the opportunity to inform him about the global halal industry, which was worth US$3.1 trillion in 2018 and is growing by 4.1% every year and is expected to reach US$5 trillion in 2030," he said.


Mohamad told the Dewan Rakyat this in response to a question from Tan Kok Wai (PH-Cheras) about the outcome of Ahmad Zahid's to China in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of Malaysia-China bilateral relations.


Mohamad said that during the visit, Ahmad Zahid, who is also the Minister of Rural and Regional Development, took the opportunity to explore cooperation opportunities between Malaysia and China, in Technical and Vocational Education Training, connectivity and people-to-people relations.


“The two leaders also exchanged views on regional and international issues involving mutual interests including the fields of high technology, renewable energy, digital economy and semi-conductors,” he added.


According to him, overall, the official visit succeeded in achieving the goal of strengthening bilateral relations and maintaining the existing understanding between Malaysia and China.


Meanwhile, in response to a supplementary question from Zakri Hassan (PN-Kangsar) on the South China Sea issue, Mohamad said Malaysia is firm in defending the country's sovereignty and will use all available platforms to negotiate with China, which is reported to have deployed its warships to the area.


"We will not compromise on sovereignty and will use existing mechanisms to continue negotiations including on the Code of Conduct (COC) dealing with the South China Sea issue," he said.