Penang factories to be hit by global financial crisis soon

Factories here are expected to feel the heat of the global meltdown by December or early next year, according to the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM) northern branch.

Its chairman Datuk O. K. Lee said the branch was now looking into ways to help factories here cushion themselves from the impact and take remedial measures.

Lee said industry players had complained that demand for their products had softened due to the global slowdown, adding that the sharp rise in electricity tariff, transportation fees and gas had been burdensome.

“The only good news for us is that the US dollar is growing strong as industry players here are more focused on export-oriented activities,” he said on Wednesday.

A survey would be conducted to find out how members had been affected by the world economic turmoil as Penang was home to many multinational companies.

He added that members in Penang were concerned about the impact of the global crisis on their businesses and their survival.

The branch has about 350 members in the northern region, 280 of which are based in Penang while the rest are from Kedah and Perlis.

“Right now, the effect is still not that strongly felt here. But we anticipate a chain reaction as it is only a matter of time before it hits us,” he said.

By The Star

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