The Malaysian Rubber Glove Manufacturers Association (MARGMA) recently held dialogue sessions with the US Customs & Border Patrol and UK’s envoy to Malaysia to discuss areas of compliance with international standards.
The US CBP team led by Anne Marie Highsmith, Executive Assistant Commissioner of the Office of Trade, noted efforts taken by industry players and also by the Malaysian government in Trans-Pacific Partnership participation and labour law reforms in accordance with ILO standards.
Other matters discussed at the dialogue sessions included technical assistance and collaborations in educating businesses, migrant workers, society, and unions by the US CBP.
MARGMA members were encouraged to use the comply chain app available from ILAB which is designed to provide guidance and support, particularly to SMEs.
Members are being educated and sensitised on compliance issues while bridging the gap and understanding of cultural practices in Southeast Asia to both the US CBP and UK’s Envoy. While doing this, it was concurred by all parties that a level playing field is essential globally for all glove manufacturers. And that there is a cost for ESG compliance and that it be reflected, in the cost of the final product. As discussed and agreed by US CBP, any unrealistic low selling prices will be a tell-tale sign of cutting corners on ESG.
At a separate session with UK’s Migration and Modern Slavery Envoy, Andrew Patrick, MARGMA President Dr. Supramaniam shared the continuous efforts and various measures undertaken by members to ensure compliance with the new procurement framework of the UK National Health Service (NHS) are met.
“MARGMA is committed to raising industry standards and setting new benchmarks for the rubber glove industry in Malaysia to be emulated by other global manufacturers. In fact, the rubber glove industry in Malaysia was one of the first industries to have implemented zero-cost recruitment practices since 2019,” said Dr. Supramaniam.