MALAYSIA: Malaysia urged to promote automation in rubber industry to reduce foreign labour

Doeka Asia Sdn Bhd Managing Director, Peter Zuber said Malaysia is on the right track in promoting industrial automation in the country in terms of quality and operating cost, however, there are still many manufacturers that hire foreign labour performing manual process.

"The labour-intensive rubber products industry is faced with a shortage of local workforce, due to its physically demanding work environment. This has compelled the industry to employ foreign workers, who accounted for 32 per cent of the industry's workforce," he said.

He suggested that in order to reduce the labour component and improve productivity, manufacturers must develop and adopt automated production processes.

"Automation is the major element of modern manufacturing and the key for success. The correct incentive for applying automation is to increase productivity, and quality beyond what is possible by conventional way in order to realise economies of scale or predictable quality levels.

"However, to maintain machines which are naturally more complex to operate and able to fulfill their tasks, well-trained and motivated technicians are required," he told Bernama after giving his presentation at the Sixth International Rubber Glove Conference & Exhibition, in Kuala Lumpur Wednesday (5 Sept 2012).

He also said that the process of implementing automation should therefore be accompanied by training programmes on the equipment for the technicians.

Since Doeka Maschinenbau Germany commenced operations back in 1967, the company has rapidly grown to become a global leader in the development of production, testing, packaging machinery and laboratory equipment for the condom and glove industries.

Its machines are used by market leaders and prestigious testing institutes in over 40 countries worldwide.

Source: "Bernama" (Malaysian National News Agency), Kuala Lumpur; 5 Sept 2012

(Syed Rashid Ali, Karachi, Pakistan)