PHUKET: The organizers of the annual Phuket Halal Expo, to take place early next month, have invited Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and Asean Secretary-General Dr Surin Pitsuwan to give speeches at the event, which will have special activities in Patong and Phuket Town.
Officially entitled “Phuket Andaman Halal for Tourism 2012″, the expo is intended to showcase the island’s Muslim culture, history and cuisine.
A press conference to announce the event was held on Wednesday at the Royal Paradise Hotel and Spa, the host venue for the Patong activities from September 5 to 8.
Announcing the expo were Phuket Vice Governor Sommai Prijasilpa; Provincial Administration Organization (PPAO) Vice President Soratham Jinda; Phuket Chairman of Halal Affairs at the Central Islamic Council of Thailand (CICOT) Dr Ismaae Alee and fellow CICOT member Samaan Adam.
Mr Soratham said that more than 300 representatives from various organizations around the world would fly in to attend special halal seminars to be held at the hotel on September 5 and 6.
“The Expo is divided into two parts, both intended to boost confidence, among both Thai and foreign Muslim tourists, that Phuket halal food is prepared in accordance with Islamic principals.”
The second activity will be a food fair on September 7 and 8 at Sanamchai, opposite Phuket Provincial Hall in Phuket Town, starting at 5pm both days.
The organizers hope that PM Yingluck will be available to use the occasion to promote halal food as an important component of the government’s “Thai Kitchen to the World” initiative and that Dr Surin will speak on Muslim tourism after the terms of the Asean Economic Community (AEC) go into effect in 2015.
The PPAO hopes Muslims from across Phuket, as well as nearby provinces, will come to enjoy the expo and seminar, Mr Soratham said.
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