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(From left) Hartalega Holdings chief commercial officer Kuan Mun Keng, executive chairman Kuan Kam Hon and chief executive officer Kuan Mun Leong at the AGM on Tuesday, Sept 15, 2020.

KUALA LUMPUR: Hartalega Holdings Bhd says demand for rubber gloves won’t be affected by vaccines for the Covid-19 coronavirus and will continue to outstrip supply in the next three to four years.

The pandemic has changed users’ behavior, that has resulted in the demand for gloves, chairman Kuan Kam Hon told reporters. Demand for usage in developed countries have increased 30% while in developing countries, usage has more than doubled, he says.

The industry cannot meet the 120b of additional demand for gloves. This demand can only be fulfilled in three years, he adds.

Spot prices for gloves have jumped 30% this quarter and he expects them to increase 40-50% in coming quarters, he says.

Glove prices are now three times higher compared to those during pre-covid-19.

Hartalega earmarked RM1.5bil investment to build four plants, of which first two lines will be operational by October 2021.

Another RM3bil is for its next expansion phase, its so-called NGC2, which will be fully completed in seven years. - Bloomberg