KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) - Malaysia has inspected and will continue to monitor rubber manufacturing companies after the country’s rubber glove production came under U.S. scrutiny for alleged forced labour practices, its Human Resources Ministry said on Saturday.
In a statement, the ministry said it had carried out enforcement activities on errant companies, and would continue to monitor and take action against employers failing to adhere to national labour laws and legislation.
The ministry was responding to the U.S. Department of Labor’s inclusion of Malaysia-made rubber gloves on a list of goods produced by forced labour last month.
The move came after shipments from the world’s largest glove maker, Malaysia’s Top Glove Corp Bhd were banned by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection in July over allegations of forced labour.
Working on lifting the ban, Top Glove said last week it had raised remediation payments to migrant workers for recruitment fees to 136 million ringgit.
The ministry said it had met with the Malaysian Rubber Glove Manufacturers Association and other rubber manufacturing companies to discuss the U.S. ban, and set up a task force to ensure policy compliance, including when hiring foreign workers.
“(The ministry) does not condone and tolerate any act of forced labour as well as compromise towards non-compliance of any practice amounting to forced labour,” it said.
Reporting by Liz Lee; Editing by Kirsten Donovan
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