Korea and UAE to Cooperate on Food Technologies and Certification Data
D-Bo , March 6, 2015, 9:25 a.m.
Seoul and Abu Dhabi on Thursday agreed to share halal food technologies and market and certification data. Halal foods are certified according to strict Islamic dietary guidelines, and their global market size is expected to hit US$1.6 trillion in 2018, some 15 percent of the entire food and beverage market.
Sealing the deal paves the way for Korea to develop its own halal certified products, which it expects will double its current $700 million halal exports by 2017. Another deal on agricultural cooperation is expected to open the door for the UAE to bolster its agricultural and food industries, while also giving Korean companies the opportunity to make inroads into the region.
Seoul will also set up the Gulf region's first Korean cultural center in Abu Dhabi, and push for joint development of cultural content. There is a growing Korean population in the UAE and increasing interest in Korean culture and language there thanks to the popularity of Korean TV dramas and K-pop.
Seoul and Abu Dhabi also agreed to upgrade their collaboration in healthcare, oil field development and infrastructure. When they forged a nuclear cooperation deal in 2009, the UAE became Korea's first strategic partner in the Gulf.