The New Crown Pandemic Has Caused Unprecedented Challenges For The Rubber Glove Industry In Malaysia

- Dec 08, 2020-

On December 6, 020, it was reported in Kuala Lumpur that Malaysia provided 240 billion rubber gloves worldwide, meeting nearly 70% of the global demand for 360 billion rubber gloves in 2020. Since the new crown pandemic has caused a surge in demand for rubber gloves, it is currently a veritable star industry. It is reported that the new crown virus has killed more than 1.5 million people worldwide. In the past week alone, an average of more than 10,000 people died of new coronary pneumonia every day in the world, and the death toll has been steadily rising every week.

According to data from the World Health Organization, the number of deaths caused by new coronary pneumonia in the past year is higher than the number of deaths caused by tuberculosis in 2019 and nearly four times the number of deaths caused by malaria. Many countries in the world are fighting the second or third wave of the epidemic, and the current situation is even more severe than the first wave. With the strong demand brought by COVID-19, Malaysian rubber gloves are facing unprecedented responsibilities and challenges.

The darling of rubber glove inventory Bursa Malaysia, rubber glove manufacturers actually dominate the local exchange in 2020. When Malaysia imposed a lockdown in March to curb the spread of COVID-19, rubber glove manufacturers could only operate at half their capacity, resulting in production shortages and fears that they could not meet global demand.

Due to “forced labor” concerns, the US Customs and Border Protection (US CBP) ban on Top Glove’s subsidiaries Top Glove Sdn Bhd and TG Medical Sdn Bhd in July caused huge losses to the company and its share price plummeted. On the same day, the hope of the vaccine and the subsequent knee-jerk reaction caused the market value to evaporate RM10.5 billion from the four stocks of Total Glove, Top Glove, Hartalega, Supermax and Kossan Rubber.

When Top Glove resolved the issue of the ban, more than 4,000 workers were infected with COVID-19 and became the largest contributor to COVID-19 cases in Malaysia, known as "Teratai". According to the "Minimum Standards for Workers' Housing and Amenities Act of 1990" (Act No. 446), "Top Gloves" was charged for alleged crimes. Manufacturers must close factories in phases for COVID-19 screening, and the enhanced movement control order imposed on workers’ dormitories has been extended to December 14.

The 20 factories of Top Gloves were temporarily closed and 8 production lines were still operating in Klang, which reduced their output by 10% to 20%. The company expects that after the temporary shutdown of its production facilities in Klang, its revenue for the current fiscal year ending August 31, 2021 will be affected by 3%.

Despite the many challenges, the industry is expected to expand its bullish sentiment based on the deployment of the COVID-19 vaccine, which will increase the demand for rubber gloves by 18 billion a year. Assuming 60% of the world has a population of 7.5 billion, it will be divided twice a year. Get this vaccine. In 2021, Malaysia’s rubber gloves market share will increase from 67% in 2020 (360 billion pieces in the world) to 280 billion rubber gloves (410 billion pieces in the world demand), and Malaysia’s market share is expected to increase to 68%.

As the whole society embraces the new normal, people's awareness of health and personal hygiene is likely to continue, and the demand for rubber will continue to grow by 2022.