High Glove shares drop as employee hostels put below strict lockdown | Malaysia

Two-week containment measures affect more than 13,000 workers west of Kuala Lumpur.

The share price of Top Glove, the world’s largest manufacturer of medical gloves, slumped on Tuesday after the Malaysian government placed a strict lockdown on more than 13,000 workers living in company-run dormitories west of Kuala Lumpur.

Authorities imposed the two-week lockdown after 215 coronavirus cases occurred in one of the hostels in Meru, about 25 miles west of the capital and near Top Glove’s factories.

The curbs, on which the Ministry of Health will be conducting targeted examinations, went into effect Tuesday and affect 13,190 workers and nearly 1,200 people nearby. The company’s stock fell nearly 10 percent in early trading on the Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange.

“[The lockdown] will enable the Ministry of Health to continue to conduct targeted surveys on workers and residents in the region, ”said Senior Security Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob at a press conference on Monday.

He also asked the company to check all factory workers and the other dormitories.

Staff temperatures are checked upon arrival at a Top Glove hostel for female workers [Ahmad Yusni/EPA]Top Glove, which employs around 21,000 people and operates 41 factories in Malaysia, said in a statement that it worked closely with the district health department and local police during a visit on Sunday.

She was working to clarify the implementation of the curbs and will continue to follow the procedures that have been put in place to prevent the virus from spreading.

“Disinfection exercises on our premises and accommodations are also carried out regularly, with all necessary precautionary measures being strictly taken,” the statement said.

Last week, Top Glove rolled out stricter disease control and prevention measures to contain the spread of COVID-19 and restricted its staff to only the most important movements. It has also set up “isolation houses” for those under quarantine, it said.

Top Glove first confirmed that 17 employees tested positive for the virus almost two weeks ago. Malaysia is battling a coronavirus case resurgence that began in Borneo’s Sabah state in September. Much of the country is currently in a state of partial lockdown.

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