Demand for gloves to stay strong
12 Aug 2021
The Malaysian rubber industry, which recorded exceptional performance in the first half of 2021, is expected to maintain its momentum and reach a new high this year as demand for gloves is projected to stay strong.
Malaysian Rubber Council (MRC) chief executive officer Nurul Islam Mohamed Yusoff said the performance of rubber gloves is expected to remain robust despite the ramp up in global vaccination levels.
“The threat of the Covid-19 virus remains prevalent with the emergence of new variants whilst effects from vaccination programmes on sustaining low cases remain inconclusive, even in advanced countries such as Europe.
“The MRC estimates the global demand for rubber gloves in volume terms to maintain double-digit growth of between 12% and 15% in 2021,” he said in a statement yesterday.
Nurul Islam said the global per capita consumption of rubber gloves is expected to increase to 25 pairs in 2021.
He said this will be driven by higher usage of gloves in major Malaysian export markets such as the US and Europe, as well as large emerging markets particularly in Asia.
“The country’s rubber glove industry will maintain its positive momentum and exports are expected to reach a new high for the full year of 2021.”
As the Covid-19 pandemic continues, Nurul Islam said the MRC remains resolute to supporting the Malaysian government and the rubber industry as a whole, whilst remaining cautiously optimistic.
“This has kept the MRC on its toes and it is currently looking to future-proof its strategies by pursuing innovation with continuous emphasis on efficiency.
“As the MRC navigates the challenges and uncertainties posed by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, we will continue to intensify efforts to strengthen our resiliency. We also strive to deliver better services while doing it more efficiently than before,” he said.
The Malaysian rubber industry extended its exceptional performance with exports growing by 150% to Rm44.43bil in the first half of 2021, compared with Rm17.77bil in the previous corresponding period.
“The downstream rubber products exports, making up the bulk 89.7% of the total rubber industry exports, increased by 180.2% driven by strong performance in the latex goods in particular gloves products,” said Nurul Islam.
He added that latex goods such as rubber gloves, latex threads and condoms recorded an increase of 200.1%, attributable to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“In the first half of 2021, latex goods accounted for 93.9% of the exports of rubber products, while dry rubber products accounted for the remaining 6.1%.
“Gloves products remained the largest export income churner for the rubber industry.
“Comprising mainly medical gloves, the gloves sub-sector expanded to more than three-folds or by 210.2% to Rm36.54bil in the first half of 2021,” said Nurul Islam.
From a contraction in the first half of last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the dry rubber products sector rebounded with a growth of 38.2% to Rm2.41bil in the first half of 2021 from Rm1.75bil in the first half of 2020, according to MRC data.
The dry rubber products sector includes tyres, industrial rubber goods, general rubber goods and footwear.
Tyres, the largest exports within the dry rubber products, rose by 43.2% to Rm840mil in the first half of 2021 from Rm580mil in the first half of 2020.
Meanwhile, total exports of industrial rubber goods, which comprises products for the automotive, mining and construction sectors improved by 44.2% to Rm610mil in the first half of 2021.
Source: The Star