Gloves continue to dominate rubber products exports
13 Mar 2023
Rubber and rubber products combined export value came close to RM36 billion in 2022, with rubber gloves as one of the largest contributors.
For last year, Malaysian Rubber Council (MRC) statistics show that rubber and rubber products export values were recorded at RM8.82 billion and RM 27.16 billion, respectively.
Rubber gloves remained the biggest contributor to the exports of rubber products, contributing a value of RM19.04 billion or 70.1% to that portion for 2022. Malaysia exported a wide range of rubber gloves, including for applications in medical, industrial, cleanroom and food service sectors.
“MRC will still continue its initiatives for the rubber gloves sector to maintain Malaysia’s leading position in the global supply of the products. The council will facilitate industry players to overcome challenges and to expand markets,” said MRC deputy CEO Izwan Zarik Sapari in a statement.
Besides gloves, other latex products comprising threads, condoms, catheters and foam products increased by 29.1% in 2022 compared to 2021, with a total export value of RM2.38 billion.
Among the key exports of latex products, foam products, catheters and condoms recorded increases by 138.5% to RM359 million, 93.7% (RM620.4 million) and 25.2% (RM383.1 million), respectively, in 2022.
MRC said the strong growth indicates that Malaysia’s latex products industry is diversifying and expanding beyond gloves, which have traditionally dominated the country’s latex products exports with around 95% share.
In the non-latex products category, it said the value of tyres exported increased by 4.8% from RM1.74 billion in 2021 to RM1.83 billion in 2022. Tyre exports to Brazil and Germany increased significantly, by approximately 49% and 32.4%, respectively, compared to 2021.
For general rubber goods comprising products like automotive components, it noted that tyre precured treads, structural bearings and sporting goods, recorded a total export value of RM1.67 billion, increased 19.6% from 2021.
The US contributed the largest to the total exports with RM235.2 million in 2022. However, Indonesia recorded the highest growth at 42%, resulting in an export value of RM56.2 million in 2022.
“MRC has always put efforts in diversifying and increasing exports of dry rubber products (non-latex products). Indonesia has been identified as a poten tial market for rubber products and to capitalise on the growing demand for rubber products,” he said.
Last year, the council, formerly known as the Malaysian Rubber Export Promotion Council, conducted a marketing mission on tyre precured treads, educational seminar on gloves and participated in a ministerial mission for the rubber sector in the country.
Izwan said the council’s efforts in promoting the dry rubber products sector are also in line with National Agri-commodity Policy 2021-2030 (NAP 2030) strategies to expand the share of the products to 15% of the total rubber products exports by 2025. In 2022, the share of dry rubber products recorded a 21.1%, an increase from 8.1% in 2021.
On the human resource front, MRC in December 2022 launched the Hiring Malaysian Workers Fund (HMWF) 2.0 to encourage employers to hire more local workers, thereby reducing the rubber industry’s reliance on a foreign workforce.
MRC allocated RM17.3 million to serve the industry’s employers and employees, with 10% of the fund allocated for rubber smallholders registered under the Malaysian Rubber Board to be insured under the Social Security Organisation’s (Socso) one-year coverage of self-employed insurance schemes.
Source: The Malaysian Reserve