Malaysia: Furniture manufacturers ask again that factory operations be allowed
Malaysia continues to see an upward trend in the rate of Covid-19 infections with 17,045 recorded in one day in late July, the highest ever in a day since the pandemic hit the nation. The cumulative total infected stood at 1,013,438 in late July. Lockdown in various forms are current in different parts of the country.
Furniture manufacturing has been hit by the impact of the lockdown regulations and the Malaysian Furniture Council (MFC) continues to appeal to the government to allow the resumption of operations in the timber and furniture industry.
An article in the Star newspaper reports the MFC President, Khoo Yeow Chong, as saying that since the implementation of the Full Movement Control Order (lockdown) and overall Phase 1 of the National Recovery Plan beginning 1 June, the timber industry has suffered losses in excess of $1,4 billion. The furniture industry alone has lost more than $377 million in output so far and the figure is still rising.
Khoo is quoted as saying that because exporters are failing to meet overseas contracts buyers have been forced to turn to alternative suppliers and at the same time are demanding compensation from their Malaysia suppliers for breach of contract. He added that the current lockdown has severely affected the upstream and downstream sectors and disrupted the entire supply chain.
The MFC has appealed to the government for a lifting of the most severe restrictions in States which have a low infection rates and specifically asked that workers who have been fully vaccinated to be allowed to return to work.