The Dewan Negara, the upper house of Malaysia’s Parliament, was told that to help mitigate the impact of the global coronavirus crisis, the country’s government is committed to stabilising rubber prices and increasing its added value as the Covid-19 epidemic since the beginning of this year has affected demand in the global market, especially from China.
Malaysia’s Deputy Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister, II Datuk Seri Dr. Wee Jeck Seng, said the government is cooperating with the world's major rubber producing countries- Thailand and Indonesia under the International Tripartite Rubber Council (ITRC) framework (Malaysia is the third stakeholder) to strengthen and stabilise the price of rubber in the international market.
He explained that under this cooperation, the production share of the three countries is 63.3% of the world's NR production.
Dr. Wee said the Malaysian government plans to increase the use of rubber in the country to strengthen prices for the medium and long-term, including the use of rubber in road construction and the production of new and value-added products based on rubber, including rubber gloves. He explained that the government will also be introducing the Rubber Community Farm concept to increase the supply of raw materials, as well as to generate additional income for smallholders through cash crops and livestock farming
According to Dr. Wee, Malaysia’s government plans to implement the Eastern Region Latex Corridor to obtain local latex products to support the development of the latex rubber goods manufacturing industry, as well as to increase the income of rubber smallholders and NR consumption by empowering the tire industry.
"The tire industry is very competitive with a world market value of almost RM300 billion ($72.6 billion) and the empowerment of the country’s dry rubber-based industry can also offset our rubber goods manufacturing industry which is now dominated by the latex-based industry to increase export contributions and the global rubber industry market," he said.