Japan’s halal market ready for Tokyo Olympic Games 2020

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Since 2013, the number of halalfriendly establishments in Japan has shot to over 180 across the country. (Supplied)
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Updated 13 January 2020

Japan’s halal market ready for Tokyo Olympic Games 2020

JEDDAH: During Tokyo’s 2020 Olympic Games, Muslim athletes and tourists need not worry about finding halal food in Japan.
Since 2013, the number of halal restaurants has skyrocketed from four to 180, including fine-dining establishments that serve traditional Japanese dishes.
Muslim students are also being accommodated. In 2014, Kanda University of International Studies opened Shokujin cafeteria, which is certified by the Nippon Asia Halal Association.
And the popular chain Curry House CoCo Ichibanya opened its halal Akihabara branch in 2017.
The restaurant said: “As people of different religions and cultures visit Japan, we wanted to develop a restaurant where Muslims could enjoy meals free from concern.”
It added that although it was not easy to procure some ingredients, its experience with the halal Akihabara branch will enable them to expand further.
Japanese wagyu beef, which has become a hit in the Arab world due to its rich taste and tenderness, is also being served halal in its country of origin.
Halal Wagyu Yakiniku Panga in Tokyo’s Taito ward branched out of an already accomplished establishment to accommodate halal consumers and to grow the restaurant’s “food culture.”
Sung Gi Hong, director and manager of Panga, told Arab News where it all started: “My sister worked in Indonesia between 2015 and 2017, and when she asked her Muslim friends in Indonesia to come to Japan, they said there was nothing for them to eat because it’s difficult to find halal restaurants in Japan. When we heard this, we thought it was sad because when we travel we want to have local food, but Muslims who come to Japan have trouble finding places where they can eat.”
The restaurant chain has been running since 1999, and gained halal certification in 2015 from the Japan Halal Foundation. Hong said Panga attracts a large number of Muslim customers.
“A lot of people come to try our A5 Premium Wagyu Platter, as it allows them to enjoy a variety of different cuts of quality wagyu beef and sirloin steak,” added Hong.
Shinjuku Gyoen Ramen Ouka is another restaurant cooking halal dishes in one of Tokyo’s busiest areas.
“We serve halal and vegan options at Ramen Ouka to help promote mutual understanding,” owner Niuma Megumi Wachi told Arab News.
The restaurant features vegetarian and vegan ramen options for those who want to avoid the traditional pork-based broth.
Other halal outlets in Tokyo include Asakusa Sushi Ken, Sumiyakiya Halal Grill, Hanasaka Ji-san and KO-SO Cafe Biorise.



•• The story was only published on AN Japan

Saudi Cabinet voices support for the territorial sovereignty of Cyprus

King Salman chairs the Cabinet session on Tuesday. The meeting reviewed the Kingdom’s economic progress. (SPA)
Updated 22 January 2020

Saudi Cabinet voices support for the territorial sovereignty of Cyprus

  • Kingdom calls for security to be maintained in the region

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has voiced its support for Cyprus’ territorial sovereignty amid growing tensions following the discovery of oil and gas reserves in the eastern Mediterranean.

The Saudi Cabinet, chaired by King Salman, on Tuesday said it was watching developments in the eastern Mediterranean “with great interest,” and called for security and stability to be maintained in the region.
The Cabinet also reviewed the Kingdom’s progress among 190 economies in the World Bank’s Women, Business and the Law 2020 report, which placed it first among GCC countries and second in the Arab world on legislative reforms relating to women.
Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 program supports the implementation of reforms that enhance women’s role in economic development, raising the Kingdom’s competitiveness regionally and globally.
Minister of Media Turki bin Abdullah Al-Shabanah said the Cabinet reviewed several reports on developments in regional and international arenas.
The Cabinet reiterated the Kingdom’s assertion during the fourth session of the Arab Parliament in Cairo that its policy is based on the principles of peaceful coexistence and good neighborliness, full respect for the sovereignty and independence of states, noninterference in their internal affairs, and its belief that these principles are capable of resolving all conflicts, foremost the Arab-Israeli conflict.


The Cabinet reviewed efforts to promote political solutions to crises in Syria, Yemen, Libya and Sudan, calling on all to take action to address destabilizing foreign threats and interventions.

The Cabinet also reviewed efforts to promote political solutions to crises in Syria, Yemen, Libya and Sudan, calling on all to take action to address destabilizing foreign threats and interventions and to “move forward toward the aspirations of security, stability and development of Arab countries and their peoples.”
On regional affairs, the Cabinet condemned an attack on a military site in Niger, the bombing of a security checkpoint and a tax collection center in Somalia, and the terrorist strike by Houthi militia on a mosque in the Marib governorate, which resulted in dozens of deaths and injuries.
The Cabinet session also authorized the minister of foreign affairs or his deputy to sign a draft protocol on establishing diplomatic relations between Saudi Arabia and Zimbabwe.
An agreement on social development between the the Kingdom and Tunisia was also approved along with a memorandum of understanding for scientific and technical cooperation with Spain.
The Cabinet also approved an agreement for scientific and geological cooperation between the Saudi Geological Survey and the Russian State Geological Company.