KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 10 (Bernama) — The ASEAN Rubber Business Council (ARBC) fully supported various initiatives proposed and undertaken by governments to support rubber prices.
In a statement Thursday, ARBC said these would help to sustain the overall well-being of the smallholders.
The council hoped that the consumers of natural rubber (NR) understood the difficulties the smallholders faced and support them.
“It is through such collective effort and collaboration among the producing and consuming countries that the NR industry will continue to thrive and remain to be sustainable for many more years to come,” it said.
ARBC said the persistent low rubber prices had adversely affected the livelihood of the smallholders, in particular, those who were largely dependent on rubber as their source of income.
“If this situation persists, there is the possibility that many more smallholders will stop tappingand abandon their rubber holdings for other more lucrative activities.
“This will then disrupt the supply of raw materials required by the rubber product manufacturers for their operations,” it said.
ABRIC said it was concerned over the current protracted low rubber prices which had started their decline since 2013 and had been hovering around the present low levels from the second quarter of last year.
One of Among the reasons for the price decline was slowing demand, particularly from China, the world’s largest consumer of NR.
ARBC comprises rubber trade associations of Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam and Cambodia which accounted for around 76.2 per cent of the world’s total natural rubber production.