09/02/2024 01:23 PM

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 9 (Bernama) -- Malaysia’s natural rubber (NR) output eased 1.1 per cent in December 2023 to 30,342 tonnes from 30,669 tonnes in November 2023, according to the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DoSM).

Year-on-year, NR production was 0.7 per cent lower compared with 30,556 tonnes in December 2022.

Chief statistician Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin said the NR production in December 2023 was mainly contributed by the smallholders sector (88 per cent) compared to the estates sector (12 per cent).

“Total NR stocks in December 2023 increased by 11 per cent to 191,320 tonnes as compared to 172,307 tonnes in November 2023.

“Rubber processors factory contributed 91.1 per cent of the stocks followed by rubber consumers factory (8.9 per cent) and rubber estates (0.1 per cent),” he said in a statement today. 

Mohd Uzir noted that exports of Malaysia’s NR amounted to 45,591 tonnes in December 2023, a decrease of 11.7 per cent versus  November 2023’s 51,643 tonnes.

He said China remained the main destination for NR exports, which accounted for 41.5 per cent of total exports in December 2023, followed by Germany (12.7 per cent), Iran (3.9 per cent), the United States (3.8 per cent) and Pakistan (2.8 per cent). 

“Exports performance was contributed by NR-based products such as gloves, tyres, tubes, rubber thread and condoms.

“Gloves were the main exports of rubber-based products with a value of RM0.9 billion in December 2023, a decrease of 5.9 per cent as compared to November 2023 (RM1.0 billion),” he said.

According to DoSM,  the average monthly price of concentrated latex recorded a decrease of 2.2 per cent in December 2023 to 537.63 sen per kilogramme (kg) from 549.67 sen per kg in November 2023, while scrap rubber was also down by 3.4 per cent to 542.89 sen per kg in the month compared to 562.24 sen per kg in the preceding month. 

It added that prices for all Standard Malaysian Rubber (SMR) decreased between 2.1 per cent and 2.2 per cent.

The department said the performance of the fourth quarter of 2023 (4Q 2023) showed NR production increased by 1.5 per cent to 93,956 tonnes as compared to 92,599 tonnes in 3Q 2023. 

Meanwhile, the annual performance of the country’s NR production in the 4Q 2023 recorded an increase of 3.9 per cent compared to the 4Q 2022 (90,399 tonnes).

According to the Malaysia Rubber Board Digest, the Kuala Lumpur rubber market witnessed a mixed trend, with the price of SMR 20 closing higher on the last trading day of 2023, supported by optimism over more stimulus measures announced by China coupled with an expectation that the United States Federal Reserve would start cutting interest rates in 2024.


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