2017 | Quarter 2

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Northport (Malaysia) Bhd (Northport) a Member of MMC Group and Weifang Sime Darby Port Co. Ltd, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to establish a sister port relationship. Under the MoU, the two ports will cooperate in port management and facilitate halal trade shipment between Malaysia and China.

The MoU was signed by Dato' Sri Che Khalib Mohamad Noh, Chairman of Northport and Mr. Timothy Lee Chi Tim, Chairman of Weifang Sime Darby Port.

The exchange ceremony, held in conjunction with the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road the One Belt, One Road Forum in Beijing, China was witnessed by Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia.

"The cooperation and collaboration for the establishment of a sister port relationship is aimed at boosting the roles of both ports in conjunction with the "21st Century Maritime Silk Road" and the "One Belt, One Road" initiatives", said Dato' Sri Che Khalib.

Weifang Sime Darby Port and Northport will share experiences, capabilities and resources in the fields of port management and related activities. Both ports will also carry out joint commercial and promotional activities and establish the necessary facilities to attract companies in the shipping and related industries in Malaysia and China.

Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Mohd Bakke Salleh, Sime Darby Berhad President and Group Chief Executive, said the partnership has great potential to capture a slice of the fast-growing halal market.

“Halal is big business and this partnership aims to capture a market that is growing by 10% a year. Weifang Port is strategically located in the prime region of the Bohai Sea economic belt, offering a major access into China’s hinterland,” Mohd Bakke said.

Weifang Port is now actively expanding its business into the halal industry. Its close proximity to the One Belt One Road network provides an added advantage to a proposed "halal corridor" linking the Muslim regions in China, namely Henan, Ningxia, Gansu and Xinjiang, where the Muslim population is estimated to be more than 30 million people. Weifang Port could also be a gateway and a future halal hub for the Korean and Japanese markets.