Bahrain MPs set to vote on pork ban
Manama, April 28, 2013
Bahrain's members of the parliament (MPs) are set to take a final vote proposal that could see pork banned in the kingdom.
MPs last month approved two-month jail sentences and fines of up to BD300 ($785) for anyone who imports, sells or possesses the product, which is forbidden in Islam, said a report in the Gulf Daily News, our sister publication.
The ban on pork has been included in a bill that also seeks tougher punishments for gambling and could potentially lead to alcohol being banned.
The controversial bill will then be forwarded to the Shura Council and, if approved, would be submitted to the Cabinet for review and to His Majesty King Hamad for ratification.
Some consumers fear banning pork could affect international business by making the country a less desirable destination.
Bahrain Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) food and agriculture committee chairman Ebrahim Al Daisi was also against banning pork.
"I think there are more important issues to worry about than banning pork or alcohol in Bahrain," he said.
"The MPs argue we're an Islamic country, but we can't just ban something because we don't want to consume it. There are residents who do consume these products and we have to consider them too. You can't force other people to follow what you believe is right."
However, Daisi does not believe a ban on pork would have a major impact on business, as the amount of pork imported to Bahrain is not huge. – TradeArabia News Service