PENANG: Iconic Worldwide Bhd’s wholly-owned subsidiary Iconic Medicare Sdn Bhd has completed its new RM200mil personal protective equipment (PPE) manufacturing facility for gloves and medical face masks here in Batu Kawan.
In a statement Wednesday, Iconic said it obtained the Certificate of Completion and Compliance on Nov 9.
The new manufacturing facility in Batu Kawan Industrial Park is expected to yield a minimum production capacity of 3.3 billion pieces of gloves and 220 million pieces of medical face masks per annum.
At the initial stage, Iconic has started running four double former glove dipping lines, and plans to increase to six by end of the year.
By the first quarter of 2022, a total of 12 double former glove dipping lines and 20 medical face mask production lines would be installed and commissioned.
“We expect the demand for PPE to be sustainable even after the Covid-19 pandemic due to the new norm and public awareness of the need for self-protection and hygienic practices,” Iconic managing director Datuk Tan Kean Tet said.
“Although the average selling price of gloves has been dropping, raw material prices has also dropped about 70% as well so we are confident of maintaining the bottom net figures.
“Furthermore, the group will be exploring the possibility of producing nitrile butadiene rubber (NBR) in Malaysia to address the market demand for the raw material,” Tan said.
He explained that currently countries such as South Korea, Japan, Thailand and China were the main producers of NBR, whereas Malaysia is the largest consumer and importer globally by consuming 65% of the world’s supply of NBR.
By producing it locally, glove makers will be able to ensure a consistent supply of the raw material in addition to reducing production and logistics costs, Tan said.
“For gloves, we will be targeting mainly the export market. The demand in Malaysia is not high, so we are looking towards Europe & US as principal markets. We have already obtained the CE, FDA and ISO certifications for our medical face masks and nitrile gloves, all of which will enable the company to export its products overseas.
“For masks, we are currently focusing on the local market but we are also exporting our products to overseas markets for better sustainability of the business,” he said.