10 PH lifestyle companies explore creative expression at Index Dubai 2018


Embodying fluidity in design, the Philippine exhibitors of Index Dubai 2018 are set to showcase a diverse selection of lifestyle and design pieces that rallies for self-expression and individualism at the Dubai World Trade Centre on March 26-29, 2018.

As the pendulum of control swings back to the clients and end-users, there is a significant demand for items that provide buyers with an avenue of self-expression, those that allow the incorporation of personal beliefs, experiences, and ambitions.

This is reflected in the central theme of Index Dubai 2018, Design for Self-Expression. It permits for a more versatile show in which there is creative freedom among its exhibitors to explore new avenues of design that are personal and yet open to the needs of buyers.

 “Index Dubai 2018 is an opportune platform for our artisans to get a better grasp of their own niche as artists as they showcase their works as an expression of themselves and connect on a creative level among international audiences,” said Department of Trade and Industry Undersecretary Nora K. Terrado.

“Other than world-class quality, there is a distinctness in our products that comes from every artisan putting their own expression in their works. There is no doubt that these products will connect with buyers from all over the world,” Terrado added.


For this participation, five local fashion companies will brave the predominantly home trade show to compliment the other five furniture and furnishings participants.

Beatriz will bring an abstraction of the tropics with a capsule series of vibrant and graphically shaped casual cuff and clutch bags with the company’s signature texture.

Whereas Lally Dizon Design Concepts will showcase a more exotic collection featuring bold-colored hand bags, clutches, and cuffs made from crocodile and python skins and accented with 24k gold plater brass and semi-precious stones.

All intrinsically handmade by local artisans, Mele + Marie’s collection of bags, clutches, and jewelry evoke a more classic feel, a reflection of the company’s view of the beauty of life.

From Carabao horns and nails to coco beads and capiz shells, Arnel Papa has become a master in transforming natural indigenous materials into bespoke internationally renowned handcrafted jewelries that elicit an earthy rawness, a trademark of his personal designs.

Betis Crafts Inc. is an expert in ornate hand-crafted Gmelina and Mahogany wood loose furniture encompassing living, dining, and bedroom pieces that showcase world-class quality and sustainability.

Sustainability and social responsibility is among the advocacies of the Philippine delegates. Fashion accessory company Larone develops pieces that are all made of natural plant fibers and accented with natural hand-made materials like shell and brass.

Atelier-a by Cebu Fil Veneer Corporation caters to modern aesthetics, an exemplar of modern cosmopolitan lifestyle that puts importance in the restrained use of materials and the application of austere beauty.

Cebu-based home décor company Arden Classics has been a constant in many international shows and continue turn heads with their unique products that transforms legally procured shells and metals into works of whimsical art.

Recyclable and sustainable, Yvette’s Bags and Beads collection utilizes the traditional crochet method to turn straws and other indigenous materials into finely made bags.

Nature’s Legacy has myriad of products, including furniture, home and fashion accessories, and outdoor and garden, provokes conscientious thoughts and environmental responsibility to its consumers.

The Philippine delegates will be presented under the LifestylePhilippines brand led by the Center for International Trade Exhibitions and Missions, DTI’s export promotions arm.

Since its launch in 1987, INDEX has been connecting architects, interior designers, developers, and procurement professionals with the latest brands and trendsetting start-ups, as the biggest international figures in the interior furnishings and fit-out scene.

It prides itself as the largest gathering for the design community in Middle East and North Africa. In 2017 alone, INDEX gathered more than 800 exhibitors and over 34,000 attendees.

INDEX covers six sectors: Architecture & Design City; Accessories & Homeware; Cabinets, Closets & Storage; Furniture & Furnishings; Lighting & Technology; Sleep & Textiles.


Pangasinan MSMEs join IFEX Philippines

DTI-CITEM, Dagupan LGU team up to uplift local firms in PH biggest food show

img1.jpgMSME representatives from Dagupan City under the Produktong Dagupeño Marketing Cooperative (PDMC).

Products of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) based in Dagupan City, Pangasinan will be showcased during the three-day IFEX Philippines, the country’s biggest export-oriented food show on 25-27 May 2018 at the World Trade Center Metro Manila and the Philippine Trade Training Center (PTTC).

IFEX Philippines is the Philippines’ biggest export‐oriented food show organized by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), the export promotion arm of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).

A total of 16 Dagupan-based MSMEs already confirmed participation in IFEX Philippines 2018 which is expected to draw thousands of visitors around the world. The exhibiting firms are members of the Produktong Dagupeño Marketing Cooperative (PDMC), a group of entrepreneurs assembled by the local government unit (LGU) last January 2018 to uplift the best of Dagupan‐made products.

“PDMC is proud to represent the best of what Dagupan has to offer to the world in IFEX Philippines,” said Fiona Mae Lopez, the Dagupan City Cooperative Officer. “This will be the first major trade event of PDMC as a cooperative ever since the group took off starting 2018.”

Fishing accounts for a major slice of livelihood in Dagupan City.

In partnership with CITEM, the local government of Dagupan City facilitated and subsidized the participation of the MSMEs to promote the city’s premier products and provide more livelihood opportunities for small businesses.

“The collective participation of Dagupan firms is a welcome development for the upcoming seafood edition of IFEX Philippines,” said Nora K. Terrado, DTI Undersecretary for Trade and Investments Promotion.

“Developing MSMEs is one of the priority growth areas of DTI under the Duterte administration. They are our partners for pushing for inclusive growth and it is now our turn to help them elevate their marketing promotions and export-readiness,” added Terrado.

Palitao de yema, one of Dagupan City’s special delicacies, will also be featured in IFEX Philippines.

PDMC members showcasing the world-class Dagupan Bangus includes La Catalina, Delia’s Marinated Boneless Bangus, Nak‐Nak’s, Nana Cion, Maria Endang, Noreen, Pugaro Fish Products and other bangus producers.

The group is also featuring some of the city’s other high-value seafood products and local delicacies from Mamang’s Homemade, Aling Galing, Jarold’s Super Desserts and Anne’s Cassava Chips.

Their products include lapu-lapu, talakitok, oysters, crab, shrimp, dried fish, cassava chips, organic nipa vinegar, ube halaya, roasted peanut, turmeric tea, palitao de yema, and other local treats.

The 12th edition of IFEX Philippines is organized by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), the export promotion arm of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), in partnership with the Department of Agriculture (DA).

Interested companies/exhibitor may contact Ms. Alex Lucas at 831-2137, or send an inquiry at alucas@citem.com.ph.










‘Milkfish Capital of the World’ joins IFEX Philippines 2018

Dagupan City local gov’t brings worldfamous bangus in PH’s biggest export food show

Dagupan Bangus, known for its sweet and savory taste, is set to make a splash in IFEX Philippines 2018.

Touted as the “Milkfish Capital of the World”, Dagupan City will take center stage in the 12th edition of IFEX Philippines 2018 on May 25‐27 at the World Trade Center Metro Manila in Pasay City.

With the theme ‘The Best of the Seas,’ this year’s edition will highlight Dagupan City’s wide product assortment of world‐renowned milkfish, locally known as bangus, other seafood offerings, and various local delicacies in their Regional Pavilion.

“We are proud to welcome Dagupan City as a premier addition to our roster of regional participants in the upcoming event,” said Nora K. Terrado, Undersecretary for Trade and Investments Promotion of the Department Trade and Industry (DTI).

“As a prime export promotion platform, IFEX Philippines is the perfect venue for Dagupeños to showcase the country’s national fish and show to buyers why their city is fast becoming the Bangus Capital of the World,” explained Terrado.

IFEX Philippines is the Philippines’ biggest export‐oriented food show organized by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), the export promotion arm of DTI.

“Everyone is invited to visit our pavilion in IFEX Philippines to enjoy Dagupan Bangus in various ways since we will offer it fresh and frozen in their cut of choice, deboned, marinated in corn oil, smoked, or stuffed,” said Dagupan City Mayor Belen Hernandez.

Dagupan Bangus: World’s Tastiest Milkfish

As a major commercial hub in the province of Pangasinan, Dagupan City prides itself with the reputation of supplying the world’s tastiest milkfish products with its sweet and savory taste, producing at least an estimated 16,000 tons of milkfish annually.

The 8.04 kg bangus in the 2017 Bangus Rodeo.

Thousands of jobs are generated through the bangus industry including farmers, processors, and dealers. As of 2017, there are 221 accredited milkfish‐producing businesses in the locality.

With its lucrative milkfish industry, Dagupan City mounts its annual “Bangus Festival,” a month‐long thanksgiving celebration highlighted with a showdown of the city’s finest catch and an iconic simultaneous grilling of thousands of Dagupan Bangus.

Last year, the heaviest bangus winner weighs 8.04 kilograms. This is considered as one of the heaviest ever recorded in the annals of the Bangus Rodeo, one of the major events of Bangus Festival. In 2003, the city’s grill line was also featured in the Guinness Book of World Records when it secured the record for the Longest Barbeque in the World (later taken by the town of Bayambang, also in Pangasinan).

According to City Agriculturist Ema Molina, Dagupan Bangus derives its distinct taste to the topographical arrangement of its fishing sites in brackish waters with fresh water coming from Mt. Ampucao in Benguet while the salty water comes from the Lingayen Gulf.

“The combination of waterbodies make Dagupan City the perfect place to raise bangus since this setup enables the breeding grounds to have more salinity than fresh water, but not as much as seawater,” said Molina.

Studies show that the soil was found to be low in phosphorus and high in calcium. The bones of the fish are bigger due to the high‐level of calcium concentration and this allows for more meat.


“The frequent tidal action also results in the flushing of soil and dirt in the fishing grounds, preventing unwanted change in taste and quality,” explained Molina.

“Constant flushing also contributes to the growth of lablab which fishes feed on,” she added.

Lablab is a naturally-grown aquatic plant that consists of diatoms, planktons, and benthic blue algae. In order to grow lablab, the water from the fishponds has to be flushed out and allowed to dry for a day.

Molina also shared that Dagupan Bangus can be distinguished by its lower tail that is shorter than its upper tail, which really makes it very unique as compared with other milkfish varieties.

Among its distinguishing features are its short head and short mouth, as well as its protruding belly which is considered as the most delicious part of the fish.

“Since Dagupan Bangus is well-known and sought-after in the market, other milkfish sellers are trying to fool buyers by cutting the lower tail shorter to make it seem like a real deal,” warned Molina.

To protect and promote their brand, the local government has instituted the Dagupan Bangus Industry Development program through an ordinance to maintain high standards in breeding, processing and certifying their milkfishes in partnership with DTI, the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) and other private entities.

Milkfish with ‘Dagupan Certified’ seal.

“Through public and private efforts, we have developed a ‘farm‐to‐fork’ process for our bangus products, which involves the accreditation and recommendation of farms, dealers, processors, and retailers all over the country,” explained Molina.

Just last year, the city government opened a shared‐service deboning facility at the Malimgas Public Market that adheres to good manufacturing practices of milkfish processing.

“We have also instituted a tagging scheme to protect the interest of our patrons and consumers, so if you want to ensure that you are buying a genuine Dagupan Bangus, you need to look for a ‘Dagupan Certified’ yellow seal on the fish,” shared Molina.

The 12th edition of IFEX Philippines is organized by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), the export promotion arm of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), in partnership with the Department of Agriculture (DA).

Interested companies/exhibitor may contact Ms. Alex Lucas at 831-2137, or send an inquiry at alucas@citem.com.ph.


PH energy sector take center stage in world’s biggest industry event

DTICITEM leads PH investment drive at Hannover Messe in Germany

img1.jpgBagui Wind Farm in Bangui, Ilocos Norte.

The country’s booming energy industry is expected to get more foreign investors as the Philippine government ramps up its non‐traditional trade and investments promotion drive in the upcoming Hannover Messe in Hannover, Germany, on April 23 to 27, 2018.

The Department of Trade and Industry‐Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (DTI‐CITEM) is keen on attracting more investments for the country’s energy sector through export promotion activities in line with the Philippine Energy Plan (PEP) 2012‐2030 of the government.


DTI Undersecretary Nora K. Terrado


“We are elevating trade and investment promotion to a whole new level as we tap our partners for inclusive growth from the energy sector in a collective participation in this world’s most important industrial tradeshow and the largest capital goods exhibition in Germany,” Nora K. Terrado, DTI Undersecretary for Trade and Investments Promotion Group (TIPG).

Hannover Messe covers the complete picture of the world’s five industrial value‐adding chain under one roof, namely (1) energy; (2) integrated automation, motion and drivers (IAMD); (3) industrial supply; (4) research and technology; and (5) digital factory.

In 2017, the Germany‐based event gathered 6,500 companies from over 70 nations and was attended by 225,000 visitors and trade buyers across the world, generating around 5.6 million partnerships, business models and other contacts.

“As a melting pot of the global industrial value chain, Hannover Messe is the prime platform to drumbeat and build up investor confidence on the Philippines as a global powerhouse of renewable energy and other relevant technologies,” said Terrado.

Aside from renewable energy, DTI‐CITEM also seeks to secure investments for local stakeholders in energy efficiency, conservation, and transmission in the Philippines.

With the theme “Solutions for the New Era of Energy,” the energy sector of Hannover Messe 2018 will focus on innovative technologies for electric power systems to become more flexible, to intelligently connect sectors, and to engage new market participants amid an increasingly decentralized global energy chain.

In preparation for Hannover Messe, Terrado said they are gathering a pool of 15 Philippine companies that represent the nation’s best foot forward in terms of energy systems, technology, services and other industrial goods.

“Through this synergy among stakeholders, we will be able to seal partnerships with foreign investors and mobilize much‐needed funding and infrastructure to our energy players,” explained Terrado.

“It will also give motivation to our local energy stakeholders to fast‐track efforts towards the mainstream use of renewable energy sources in the Philippines as more and more countries have started their industrial shift towards more sustainable power sources,” she added.

Part of DTI‐CITEM’s energy investment drive is to arrange business‐matching meetings between Philippine renewable energy companies to potential investors, technology adapters, developers, suppliers and other local energy stakeholders in the international tradeshow.

PH shifts to renewable energy

Renewable energy is defined as energy generated from natural processes that are continuously replenished which includes biomass, geothermal, hydro, wind, solar and ocean energy under the PEP 2012‐2030.

It has been identified in the Investment Priority Plan 2017‐2019 as an emerging sector that needs government intervention particularly in export promotion.

Based on a DOE’s Philippine Power Situation Report, the country’s total power capacity in 2016 is at 53.16 million tons of oil equivalent (MTOE) with renewable energy occupying the second largest share at 32.5%, only next to coal at 34.6%. The top renewable energy sources in the Philippines are hydropower (16.9%) and geothermal (8.9%), followed by biomass, wind, and solar (6.6%).

In a separate statement, the energy department also said the Philippines has an operational wind energy of 426 megawatts, one of the highest in Southeast Asia. The country enjoys this distinction because of its strategic location where international financial institutions (FI) like the World Bank and Asian Development Bank have regional offices. These international FIs provide loans to countries of the world for capital programs relating to social and economic development.

According to the International Geothermal Association (IGA), the Philippines also ranks second to the United States in producing geothermal energy worldwide.

Based on Bloomberg’s New Energy Finance “New Energy Outlook” report, solar and wind power generation will dominate the future of electricity where 72 percent of the 10.2 trillion dollars spent on new power generation and installation worldwide between 2017 to 2040 will be invested in new solar photovoltaic (PV) plants and wind parks.

The said Bloomberg report also said that increase of wind capacity will contribute to a higher share of renewable energy in the overall energy mix, thus, increasing energy security and reducing carbon dioxide emission. Unlike other types of power plants, wind energy emits no air pollutants or greenhouse gases.

IFEX Philippines 2018 makes waves with exciting seafood edition

World-class seafood and marine products headline at PH’s biggest food show


Global buyers are up for an exciting showcase of the Philippines’ premier seafood and other food segments in the International Food Exhibition (IFEX) Philippines, the country’s biggest export-oriented food show, on May 25-27 at the World Trade Center Metro Manila, Pasay City.

Organized by the Department of Trade and Industry‐Center for Trade Expositions and Mission (DTI‐CITEM), IFEX Philippines 2018 will stage its first special edition featuring “The Best of the Seas,” focusing on the fast-growing seafood market in the Philippine regions and other Asian countries.


“Now an annual event, IFEX Philippines continues to be the largest and widely anticipated food trade event in the country,” said Nora K. Terrado, DTI Undersecretary for Trade and Investments Promotion Group and CITEM Officer-in-Charge (OIC).

“For its 12th edition, we will highlight the Philippines’ finest seafood to satisfy the growing global demand for marine product and coastal cuisines, along with other exquisite food products across the globe,” added Terrado.

As one of the official business events during the country’s hosting of ASEAN in 2017, last year’s IFEX Philippines opened more trade opportunities and innovations around the world with the showcase of Philippines’ best and overseas participation of the European Union (EU), China, South Korea, Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and other countries.

The three-day event was attended by nearly 11,000 international and local visitors, including 2,057 high-profile trade buyers from top global retail giants and supermarkets. These buyers came from different regions across the globe, such as Europe, China and SARs, Middle East, East Asia, America and Southeast Asia.

For its 12th edition, the IFEX Philippines will excite buyers with the country’s top and emerging food export companies to promote Philippine food products and strengthen links with buyers, importers, and retailers in the global market. Meanwhile, the event will also put up an International Hall to host the top seafood and non‐marine products of leading companies and manufacturers from other participating countries.

Making a flavorful splash in its seafood edition, IFEX Philippines will also stage the Regional Seafood Pavilion, a regional showcase of world‐class seafood products and ingredients locally sourced from the coasts and diverse marine environments across the Philippine archipelago.

“We are tapping the country’s most marine-abundant coastal regions from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. This is where we will bring key suppliers to make it easier for buyers to source in one pavilion the best fish and marine products, such as tuna, milkfish, prawns, tilapia, and other seafood from the Philippines,” said Terrado.

The Coastal Culinary Cuisine will then complete the culinary journey in a dynamic presentation of the Philippines’ most iconic and distinct regional seafood cuisines from top international and local experts to give an exquisite experience of the country’s heirloom flavors and traditions.

Mindanao Pavilion.jpg

The Marketplace is also open for a one‐stop retail experience of premium food products ranging from seafood products, fruits and vegetables, meat and poultry, processed foods, homemade regional delicacies, and many more.

For those in want of much more inspiration and adventure, visiting buyers and exhibiting companies can also attend export and investment seminars to get new ideas and updates on the latest regulations, trends, and innovations in the food industry from renowned experts, researchers, lecturers and members of the academe.

The 12th edition of IFEX Philippines is organized by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), the export promotion arm of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), with support from the Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR).

Interested companies/exhibitor may contact Ms. Alex Lucas at 831-2137, or send an inquiry at alucas@citem.com.ph.

PH eyes to expand food export market in Japan

DTI-CITEM targets $10M export sales in FOODEX Japan

banana.pngJapan remains the top destination for Philippine bananas, reaching up to US$231.3 million export sales in 2016.

The Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions, the export promotions arm of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI-CITEM), seeks to augment the Philippines’ trade relations with Japan as it showcases the country’s finest tropical flavors in the largest food fair in the Asia-Pacific region.

Under Food Philippines brand, DTI-CITEM will bring the country’s top exporters of tropical fruits, beverages and other processed food in the 43rd International Food and Beverage Exhibition, popularly known as FOODEX Japan, on 6-9 March at the Makuhari Messe in Chiba, Japan.

“Japanese people are no stranger to us. We know that they have a penchant for our tropical fruits and that is what we are looking to showcase as we return to FOODEX,” said Nora K. Terrado, DTI Undersecretary for Trade and Investments Promotion and CITEM Officer-in-Charge (OIC).

“We will also feature other tropical food and ingredients to widen the line of Philippine products shipped to Japan and promote the country as a premier sourcing destination,” added Terrado.

FOODEX is known as a major gateway to the Japanese market. Last year, the four-day event welcomed over 3,000 local and international exhibitors, as well as more than 82,000 buyers from the food manufacturing, service, distribution, and trading sectors across the global food industry.

Aside from Japan, FOODEX is also vastly participated in by buyers from major regions, such as Europe, America, Africa and Australia.

In 2017, 17 local firms under the Food Philippines pavilion bagged $7.4M worth of export sales. For this upcoming participation, CITEM seeks to generate at least US$ 10 million export sales from buyers around the world.

Japan is the Philippines’ largest export destination for fresh foods and the second largest market for processed food, next to the United States. According to preliminary reports from Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), Japan is among the top export destinations of the country with 16.42% total share to total merchandise exports of the country for the period January to November 2017.

The Philippines is the world’s second-largest producer of coconut and banana, according to the 2015 data of the Philippine Coconut Authority and the Department of Agriculture.

Meanwhile, the country is also a top global producer of pineapple (3rd), canned tuna (4th), and mango (10th), based on a 2013 data of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization.

With the existing Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement (JPEPA), Japan provides an attractive and vast market for Philippine food suppliers to serve the retail, food service, and manufacturing industries.

A data from the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) also showed Japan’s foreign direct investments in the country reached $724.71 million, while Philippine investment outflows to Japan stood at $14.165 million in the first nine months.

Food Philippines’ participation in the FOODEX Japan 2018 is organized by CITEM, in partnership with the Philippine Trade and Investment Center (PTIC) in Tokyo and Philippine Trade Training Center (PTTC), as one of the DTI’s major efforts to intensify the promotion of Philippine specialty food products in overseas trade shows.

CITEM is committed to developing, nurturing, and promoting globally competitive small and medium enterprises (SMEs), exporters, designers, and manufacturers by implementing an Integrated Approach to Export Marketing in partnership with other government and private entities.

For more information on its services and events, please log on to www.citem.gov.ph/foodex/

23 PH firm joins the world’s biggest food trade event held in Dubai

PH delegation seeks to expand the country’s global halal market in Gulfood 2018

tropical-food-selections-brandexports-phTropical food selections from Brandexports Philippines, Inc.

Twenty-three local companies are set to exhibit under FoodPhilippines in the 23rd edition of Gulfood or the Gulf Food Hotel and Equipment Exhibition and Salon Culinaire at Sheikh Rashid Hall in the Dubai World Trade Center, United Arab Emirates (UAE) from February 18 to 21.

Known as the world’s biggest food and hospitality trade event, Gulfood is a one-stop platform for the latest tastes, trends and innovation in the international food industry. In 2017, the four-day event was participated by around 5,000 companies and was attended by 97,000 trade buyers all over the world.

Led by the Department of Trade and Industry-Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (DTI-CITEM), the Philippine delegation is keen to showcase the country’s top halal-certified, healthy and organic products, including fruits and vegetables, seafood and marine products, ethnic and gourmet selections, and other functional food and beverage products.

Fruity ice pops and jellies from Miesto International Foods Corporation.

“We have carefully primed a roster of 23 top exporting companies in a grand showcase of the Philippines’ best product selections in the world’s biggest trade platform for food and ingredients,” said DTI-CITEM Deputy Executive Director Ma. Lourdes Mediran.

Joining the delegation are Asia Brewery Incorporated, Brandexports Philippines, Inc., Celebes Coconut Corp., Century Pacific Food, Inc., Gem Foods International Inc., Krystle Exports Phil. Inc, Magic Melt Foods, Inc., Mama Sita’s (Sandpiper Spices and Condiments Corporation), Marikina Food Corporation, Market Reach International Resources, Mega Global Corporation, and Miesto International Foods Corporation.


Also exhibiting in the FoodPhilippines pavilion are Millennium Specialty Coco Products, Inc., Philippine Grocers Food Exports, Inc, Pixcel Transglobal Foods Incorporated, Profood International Corporation, Q-Phil Products International, Roxas Sigma Agriventures, Inc., Sagrex Foods Inc., San Miguel Purefoods, Inc., Seatrade Canning Corporation, SL Agritech Corporation, and Super Q.

“Backed with these firms, we are confident this country participation will hit our sales target and significantly boost the government’s high-impact export strategy to generate more buyer interest for halal Philippine products in the GCC region,” said Mediran.

GCC or the Gulf Cooperation Council refers to the political, social and economic alliance of six countries, namely Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Qatar, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain. The Muslim-domination region sits at the heart of the global halal-food market.

Saudi Arabia remains the largest food consuming GCC nation due to its large population base. The fastest growth rate for food consumption, however, is seen in Qatar and UAE with an annual growth of about 5.5 and 4.8 percent, respectively. In addition, UAE alone has a market outreach to about 1.5 billion people living in the Middle East, CIS, Central Asia, Africa and other Asian regions—making it the world’s third top re-export center.

In its upcoming participation, DTI-CITEM is looking to rake in at least US$110-million export deals as the Philippines seeks to increase its 5 percent share of the international halal market, complementing the overall government’s effort to empower its halal‐certified local entrepreneurs and set up 10 halal-accreditation centers in 2018.

DTI seeks to increase the country’s exports of halal products to $1.4 billion by next year from its current average of about $800 million annually. In the World Halal Assembly held last January, DTI forecasted that the global halal market may reach a total of $10 trillion by 2030 from its current valuation of $3.2 million.

FoodPhilippines’ participation in the Gulfood 2018 is organized by CITEM, in partnership with the Philippine Trade and Investment Center (PTIC) in Dubai, as one of the DTI’s major efforts to intensify the promotion of Philippine specialty food products in overseas trade shows.

CITEM is committed to developing, nurturing, and promoting globally competitive small and medium enterprises (SMEs), exporters, designers, and manufacturers by implementing an Integrated Approach to Export Marketing in partnership with other government and private entities.

For more information on its services and events, please log on to www.citem.com.ph/gulfood/