1,000 companies suffer RM300 mln losses in floods


A worker removes rubbish debris at a catchment area of Sungai Pinang after flood situation improved in George Town, Penang. — Bernama photo

GEORGE TOWN: Various industry players in Penang are staring at losses up to RM300 million after their factories were inundated by floodwaters over the weekend.

Some have even declared a ‘total loss’ and will have to start anew while some may need to fork out a big sum to continue their operations.

The Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers Penang, which represented over 350 companies and manufacturers in the state, said the losses were due to a drop in the workforce, delayed logistics and damage to properties.

Chairman Datuk Dr Ooi Eng Hock estimated losses at between RM200 million and RM300 million, involving about 1,000 companies, a  majority of which were small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the manufacturing and services sector.

He told Bernama that the majority of them stopped operations for several days to clean up their premises.

However, Ooi lauded the Federal government for acting swiftly by allocating RM500 million as disaster relief loan for companies affected by the floods.

He said SME Corporation had also set up a disaster grant to allow these companies to apply for a one-off RM20,000 grant to help them start anew.

“We are grateful to the Federal government for the disaster relief facility where applicants can apply up to RM500,000 at 2.2 per cent interest per annum,” he said.

Meanwhile, Leong Kok Fei, the Managing Director of Leong Yin Pastry Sdn Bhd , a specialist mooncake and pastry manufacturer, said his company suffered losses of about RM80,000 due to low productivity as a result of the floods. The manufacturer’s production facility at Sungai Pinang was badly affected with floodwaters rising as high as five feet. — Bernama