Freeze in foreign worker intake will hit rubber product manufacturing industry, says association

08 Apr 2016 / 17:58 H.

    KUALA LUMPUR: The government's decision to freeze the intake of foreign workers will badly affect the rubber product manufacturing industry, said the Malaysian Rubber Products Manufacturers' Association (MRPMA).
    In a statement today, the association said, according to its recent survey, nearly 100 % of its members had said their factories would run at below capacity level, fail to fulfil existing orders and would have to reject new orders.
    "Some will have to shut down production lines due to worker shortage and will face penalty for failure to meet order deadlines," it said.
    In 2015, the rubber product manufacturing sector contributed RMl7.88 billion in revenue, up 18.6 % from 2014 and the export of rubber gloves, valued at RM13.1 billion, contributed 72.8 % of total exports.
    With the freeze in intake of foreign workers, MRPMA said, there would be no increase in export revenue and the competitors would grasp the market share.
    It said it was estimated that for every ringgit of revenue generated, a foreign worker only got six sen, half of which were spent locally and only three sen were remitted to his own country.
    MRPMA said the sector has 75,000 workers and foreign workers made up 60 %.
    Of the number, it said, about 15,000 were sent back yearly and would be replaced by new workers.
    "The government should not freeze the intake foreign workers.
    "We recommend that a quota of 30,000 foreign workers for the rubber product industry over the next three years, or an average of 10,000 foreign workers per year, in addition to the existing 15,000 workers for replacement.
    "If need be, MRPMA will provide the supervisory responsibility for the exercise under the purview of the Plantation Industries and Commodities, International Trade and Industry and Home Affairs ministries," it said. — Bernama

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