The Embassy of South Korea is keen to facilitate the discussion of the use of Brunei's Halal brand in Korean cosmetic products, said the South Korean Ambassador to Brunei.
In an email interview with The Brunei Times, Ambassador of South Korea to Brunei His Excellency Choi Byung-Koo, pointed out that the world halal market is enormous and getting bigger as global Muslim population continues to increase.
“Here, I see a potential for cooperation between Korea and Brunei in cosmetic industry. Korea’s technique combined with Brunei’s halal reputation can create the best combination to compete in the blue ocean market of halal cosmetics.”
He said that he had held discussions with key people in the halal industry, including Ghanim (the company managing marketing of the Brunei Halal brand), BEDB (Brunei Economic Development Board), and MIPR(Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources), and that he had sent letters to major Korean cosmetic companies to let them know about the potential for cooperation with Brunei.
“Some companies showed interest. And there might be business coming in. My embassy will do its best to assist facilitating the cooperation in this area,” he said.
He also noted that Korean cosmetic products are very popular and well received in Brunei, noting many Korean cosmetic shops such as Laniege, Face Shop, Skin Food, Skin79, Etude, Holika Holika and Tony Molyhave been established in the country.
After speaking to owners and staff of those companies, he noted that the variety and high quality of the Korean cosmetic products were the reason behind their popularity.
“World wide popularity of Korean cosmetic products is also backed by the surge of K-pop and Korean dramas. This also led to the people’s interest to know more about Korea’s culture and society.”
He said that he viewed Brunei as a nature loving country, “second-to-none,” and by having best-preserved forest and biodiversity, Brunei also has a huge potential in pharmaceutical and cosmetics industry.
The ambassador noted that “Brunei’s pure and advanced image boosted Brunei’s international standing for Halal Brand”.
Earlier in June this year, A memorandum of understanding was signed between Universiti BruneiDarussalam and Gyeonggi Institute of Science and Technology Promotion, a South Korean commercial research institute, to utilise Brunei’s local biodiversity for potential commercial products such as pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.
By Koo Jin Shen, Brunei Times