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KUALA LUMPUR, May 25 (Bernama) -- The rubber export performance for the first quarter (Q1) of 2022, witnessed latex goods accounted for 83.1 per cent of total exports of rubber products, with the gloves subsector remaining as the largest export revenue generator for the rubber industry, said Malaysian Rubber Council (MRC).
It said in a statement the gloves subsector however showed a decrease of 66.2 per cent equalling to RM6.04 billion in the first three months of 2022, from RM17.86 billion in the same period last in 2021.
Surgical gloves remained the highest earner with export revenue of almost RM561.7 million, an increase of almost 13.3 per cent from the previous year, while latex threads marked a 21.8 per cent increase at RM240 million compared with RM197.1 million a year ago.
Catheters recorded an increase of 66.5 per cent at RM113 million and foam products showed a notable increase of 204.2 per cent at RM106.1 million.
For dry rubber products export performance in Q1 2022, tyre which is the largest export within the dry rubber products sector recorded an increase of 4.5 per cent comparing with the corresponding period of 2021, expanding from RM429.9 million to RM449.1 million.
Other notable highlights include the industrial rubber goods, which comprise products for the automotive, mining and construction sectors, recorded RM377.2 million (23.2 per cent), followed by general rubber goods at RM375 million (9.7 per cent) and footwear at RM150.1 million (4.1 per cent).
The United States remained as the country’s leading importer of tyres, an increase of 17.6 per cent amounting to RM 193.6 million, compared with the same period last year.
Overall, for January-March 2022, MRC said Malaysia's total rubber and rubber products exports were 52.8 per cent lower to RM10.298 billion against RM21.839 billion in the same period of 2021, mainly due to the decrease of latex goods exports namely gloves and following the transition of the country to the endemic phase.
Meanwhile, MRC said current initiatives are geared towards creating value for the Malaysia’s rubber industry to ensure it remains resilient, agile, competitive and sustainable.
MRC chief executive officer Nor Hizwan Ahmad said glove manufacturers should switch their focus to the non-medical industry players as their potential and key clients to make the industry much more lucrative and continue to thrive rather than banking their focus on the healthcare sector.
“Industry players should be creatively exploring ways and means to make the glove industry profitable and thriving again.
“After all, disposable non-medical grade gloves come in various range of sizes, colours, thicknesses and textures. Applications for such gloves exist in businesses from tattoo parlours to laboratories and even childcare centres,” said Nor Hizwan.
To remain resilient, he said MRC is currently facilitating local manufacturers in securing new markets to the non-medical sectors.
Among the initiatives are MRC’s participation in the Food Safety Summit Conference & Expo 2022, in Illinois, US to promote food handling gloves, and the British Dental Conference and Dentistry Show 2022 at the National Exhibition Centre in the United Kingdom as part of the initiative to promote high quality dental products including dental gloves, orthodontics elastics and dental dams.
Besides, MRC, an agency under the Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities (MPIC) would be the lead organiser of the Malaysia International Agri commodity Expo Summit or MIACES 2022 to be held on July 26-28, 2022 in Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre, Kuala Lumpur.
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