KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Rubber Glove Manufacturers’ Association (Margma) is urging the authorities to expedite the approval of foreign workers for glove manufacturers.
It said the manufacturers were facing an acute shortage of such workers amid rising orders from around the world.
The export earnings from gloves ballooned to RM6.88bil in 2008 and, barring any unforeseen circumstances, the figure was expected to touch RM7.5bil this year, the association said in a statement.
Its president, K.M. Lee, said the majority of glove manufacturers were hard pressed now to meet the shipment dates of their customers’ orders and the delivery times had stretched to two to three months instead of the usual one month.
With the ongoing influenza A (H1N1) virus problem, more orders are expected to pour in from all over the world.
It would be a pity if Malaysian glove manufacturers had to turn their customers away to the advantage of other glove manufacturers in neighbouring countries, Lee said.
Margma said glove manufacturers had always taken the necessary steps to support local workers by offering vast employment opportunities to them in positions higher than the general workers.
As for the general worker, locals would always be given priority but the number of locals was just not enough for the growing glove industry, it said.
Hence, Margma urged the government to assist glove manufacturers by speeding up all the necessary approvals to enable them to meet the customers’ requirements effectively.
Malaysia is the world leader in the export of gloves, controlling about 65% of the global market share.
It exports to more than 180 countries worldwide, with the US and Europe as the leading importers of Malaysian gloves. — Bernama
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