THAILAND: Rubber glove factory to close, 3,000 jobs lost

Safeskin Medical and Scientific (Thailand) Ltd., a large producer and exporter of rubber gloves and latex based in Songkhla's Hat Yai district, circulated letters to its employees in late June 2014 informing them of the company's closure after 16 years in operation as the result of losses.

The actual closure of the operation will be at the end of the year.

The company was established in 1998 with registered capital of 696.25 million baht. It had expanded business and received investment privileges from the Board of Investment to produce 1.6 million rubber gloves annually with an investment of 1.125 billion baht.

The laid off workers will get only legal compensation, not consolation compensation, as they have been given six months advance notice of the factory's closure.  

The company earlier said the factory suffered great damage from the flood waters, which were approximately two metres deep, and had to close for one month for repairs.

However, its operation had not run smoothly from the environmental point of view. Local villagers complained about polluted and deteriorated water quality in the U-Tapao canal basin. In February 2009, about 500 villagers gathered in front of the company urging it to stop using coal for fuel due to environmental concerns.

Source: Daily "Bangkok Post", Bangkok; 2 July 2014
(Syed Rashid Ali, Karachi, Pakistan)