02/01/2024 01:09 PM

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 2 (Bernama) -- Malaysian restaurant Tuuu… Dia Pak Tam has established itself in  Madinah, underscoring the growing popularity of Malaysian food and beverage (F&B) brands in Saudi Arabia and providing itself as a top choice among those seeking out Malaysian cuisine.

The opening of the full-service restaurant highlights the strength of Malaysian businesses in the services industry and is evidence of its founder and owner’s commitment to share his passion for food with Saudi customers, a statement from the Malaysia External Trade Development Corporate (MATRADE) said.

“Pak Tam founder and owner Ruslin Ibrahim has more than 30 years of experience in Malaysia’s F&B industry and over the years, had expanded offerings to include original equipment manufacturer services, food deliveries, convenience stores, bakeries, catering services, and training of culinary professionals,” the statement said.

Pak Tam’s arrival in Madinah is symbolic and underscores Saudi Arabia’s acceptance of foreign cuisines. In addition to serving the Malaysian community there, Pak Tam will also educate locals and tourists on the types and variety of Malaysian cuisine, MATRADE said.

As a Malaysian restaurant in Madinah, Pak Tam plays an important role in the city's culinary sector as it fosters cross-cultural interaction.

The Consul General of Malaysia in Jeddah Roslan Sharif congratulated the team at Pak Tam’s official opening.

Roslan encouraged Saudi firms to engage with MATRADE Jeddah’s commercial section for potential collaborative trade opportunities with Malaysia.

“The kingdom currently accounts for 51% of total food retail sales in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region.

“The presence of Pak Tam is just one example of Malaysian companies leaving their mark in Saudi Arabia, contributing to market demand and supporting the kingdom’s food sector development in line with Saudi Vision 2030,” he said at the opening officiated by Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof.

The restaurant has a seating capacity of 80 with room for future growth. Expanding on its achievement in Madinah, it is considering setting up a state-of-the-art catering establishment in Makkah to meet the rising needs of Hajj and Umrah pilgrims, provide ready-to-eat packaged meals, and nurture collaborations with nearby central cooking facilities.

Pak Tam is also actively seeking to expand to Tokyo and Osaka in Japan, and Seoul in South Korea, ahead of the 2025 Osaka International Expo.

MATRADE Jeddah also emphasised the importance of Malaysian brands in Saudi Arabia, citing increased visibility and promising opportunities in the ready-to-eat segment and food services industry.

Malaysia exported RM751.25 million (US$158.5 million) worth of processed food to Saudi Arabia in 2022, or 9.5 per cent of Malaysia’s total exports, MATRADE said, adding that Malaysian entrepeneurs have the skills to contribute significantly towards the kingdom's food security objectives. 

Saudi Arabia has a vision to achieve 85 per cent local food production, the statement said.




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