Companies seeking reprieve from steel tariffs get ground rules

WASHINGTON, March 18 — President Donald Trump’s administration outlined rules for how automakers, pipeline operators and other companies can seek exemptions from new steel and aluminum tariffs that could be worth billions of US dollars. The…

Product exclusions from US tariffs may take 90 days, says document

WASHINGTON, March 17 ― Steel and aluminum users that depend on imported products not available from US producers may have to wait up to 90 days for an exclusion from the Trump administration’s new metals tariffs, according to a Commerce…

OKA’s share price rise after announcing expansion plan

PETALING JAYA: OKA Corp Bhd’s share price rose 2.13% this morning after announcing plans to build a factory in Johor to serve anticipated business growth in the region.

At 11.18am, its share price rose 2.13% or 3 sen to RM1.44 with a total of 26,000 shares traded. The stock fell 2 sen yesterday to close at RM1.41 with some 54,400 shares changing hands.

OKA told Bursa Malaysia yesterday that it is buying 3.6ha land in Mukim Senai-Kulai in Johor for RM10.1 million, on which it plans to construct a factory.

It said that the proximity of the property to the existing operations was a factor to acquire the property in preference to alternative sites.

Top Glove’s Q2 profit up 31.3% as sales volume registers strongest growth ever

PETALING JAYA: Top Glove Corp Bhd reported a 31.3% growth in net profit to RM109.01 million for the second quarter (Q2) ended Feb 28, 2018 versus RM83.05 million in the previous corresponding period, as sales volume surged by an all-time high of 21%.

Revenue was up 12.6% from RM851.54 million to RM958.44 million.

The group said in a statement the significant growth in sales volume was mainly attributed to an increase in demand for natural rubber gloves, underscoring the importance of having a balanced product mix, comprising both natural rubber and nitrile gloves, which is aligned with market demand.

It also noted that raw material prices were lower compared with Q2 FY17, with average natural rubber latex and nitrile latex prices decreasing 26.1% to RM4.40/kg and 1.9% to US$1.06 respectively.

Top Glove’s first-half net profit soared 37.1% from RM156.37 million to RM214.46 million on the back of a 15.8% rise in revenue from RM1.64 billion to RM1.9 billion.

The group said it will continue to pursue strategic expansion via the organic and non-organic routes.

Top Glove is in the process of building two new manufacturing facilities namely, Factory 31 (operational by June this year) and Factory 32 (operational by early 2019).

Upon completion, they will boost the group’s total number of production lines by 78 lines and production capacity by 7.8 billion gloves a year.

The group expects glove demand to continue growing steadily on the back of increasing healthcare standards and awareness globally.

Meanwhile, Top Glove said preparations for its condom manufacturing facility have commenced and it is expected to be operational by June 2018.

On Bursa Malaysia today, Top Glove gained 3 sen or 0.3% to RM9.85 on 3.08 million shares traded.

Toolbox trade wars: How a sure winner in US dispute has yet to reap benefits

FRANKLIN PARK (Illinois), March 12 — Nestled in an industrial park near the end of the runway of O’Hare International Airport, Metal Box International Inc should be one of the winners of a little-known trade war over toolboxes. In January,…

Petrochem sector in sweet spot on strong demand, says report

KUALA LUMPUR, March 12 — The petrochemical industry is currently in a sweet spot, given the strong market demand coupled with tight supply in the near term, said Maybank Investment Bank (Maybank IB). In a sector report on Malaysian…

Britain funds export of CSeries jets in aftermath of trade row

LONDON, March 11 ― Britain has thrown financial support for the first time behind exports of Bombardier CSeries jets part-built by Northern Ireland workers caught up in a recent trade row. Export credit agency UK Export Finance said the…

Tesla chief executive asks Trump for ‘fair outcome’ on China trade

WASHINGTON, March 9 ― Tesla Inc Chief Executive Elon Musk took to Twitter yesterday to call on US President Donald Trump to challenge Chinese auto trade rules. In a series of tweets aimed at the president, Musk said he was “against import…

Malaysia on Chinese battery maker’s radar

BEIJING: Chinese battery maker Tianneng Group is considering setting up a factory in South or Southeast Asia to tap local demand, while expanding capacity in China by 20% this year because of the electric vehicle boom, its chairman said.

Zhang Tianren told Reuters today Tianneng, which mostly makes lead-acid batteries used in electric scooters and cars, was considering Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Pakistan and Bangladesh as destinations for a plant with a processing capacity of at least 100,000 tonnes a year.

“These (countries) are all relatively good,” Zhang said in an interview. “We might want to go and have a look at several countries. If they have good conditions, open a factory.”

A lot of small and middle-sized Chinese battery companies have already gone over to South or Southeast Asia because of the 4% consumption tax on lead-acid batteries in China, he noted.

Top Glove shareholders approve Aspion acquisition

KUALA LUMPUR, March 8 — Top Glove Corporation Bhd’s proposed RM1.37 billion acquisition of Aspion Sdn Bhd will pave the way for the company to emerge as the world’s largest surgical glove manufacturer. Executive Chairman Tan Sri Lim Wee…