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Bureau of Mines / Minerals yearbook mineral industries of Asia and the Pacific 1992
Year 1992, Volume 3 (1992)

Wu, John C.
Malaysia,   pp. [248]-258 ff. PDF (2.7 MB)


Page 250

250  THE MINERAL INDUSTRY OF MALAYSIA—1992and favorable investment
center in Asia, the Government is to implement policies to strengthen the
domestic sources of growth by maintaining macroeconomic stability, to promote
efficiency and productivity of the private sector, to encourage high levels
of private investment, and to diversify the industrial base and expand exports.
In addition, the Government is to develop the necessary human resources to
meet the growing demand for skilled labor, to develop industrial technology,
and to improve the country infrastructure. 
In line with the New Development Policy (1991-2000), the Government announced
two measures for its 1993 Government budget in late 1992. First, to rely
on the private sector to stimulate economic growth, the Government will reduce
the income tax rate for a company by 1 % to 34 % and will abolish a 2 % development
tax. The Government also will reduce individual income taxes by 1 % to 2
% . Second, to establish a Human Resources Development Fund for encouraging
direct private participation in skill development programs, the Government
will spend $6.4 million annually beginning in 1993 for the next 3 years.
PRODUCTION 
The oil and gas industry continued to dominate the mineral industry of Malaysia
in 1992. The output of both crude petroleum and natural gas reached a record
high in 1992. The country's tin industry continued to suffer from low tin
prices on the Kuala Lumpur tin market (KLTM), and the industry's employment
reached a record low in 1992. As a result of reduced tin production, the
output of byproducts such as monazite and zircon decreased considerably.
The output of washed bauxite and iron ore also declined in 1992. However,
the production of copper, gold, and silver increased in 1992 mainly because
of increased output of copper ore and improved recovery rate at the Mamut
Mine in Sabah. Production of barite and silica sand decreased, while production
of cement, kaoline, and mica reached a 
record high in 1992 because of stronger demand in the domestic market. (See
table 1.) 
TRADE 
Malaysia remained a minerals net exporting country. In 1992, Malaysia's export
earnings of crude petroleum and natural gas in the form of LNG totaled $4.6
billion, accounting for more than 
95.6 % of the total mineral export earnings and 10. 1 % of the country's
total merchandise exports. Export earnings from crude petroleum and LNG decreased
in 1992 because of lower oil and gas prices in the world market. World prices
of crude petroleum ranged between $17 and $18 per barrel in 1992 compared
with between $20 and $21 per barrel in 199 1 . However, export earnings from
refined tin increased in 1992 mainly because of increased volume of exports,
which amounted to 45,150 tons and were valued at $270 million in 
1992. 
Malaysia continued to import about 22,000 bbl/d of heavy crude petroleum
from the Middle East to meet the requirement for domestic refineries. Other
important minerals imports in 1992 were iron ore, tin concentrate (for reexport
after smelting), cement, gypsum, phosphate rock, potash, sodium carbonate,
and sulfur for domestic consumption. 
STRUCTURE OF ThE MINERAL INDUSTRY 
The structure of Malaysia's mineral industry remained unchanged in 1992.
However, the output capacity of the oil and gas industry continued to expand,
while capacity of the tin industry contracted further in 1992. In the industrial
minerals sector, the cement industry was expected to have more than a 9-Mmt/a
capacity by 1993. Associated Pan Malaysia Cement Sdn. Bhd. had upgraded its
plants and expanded its capacity by 500,000 mt/a in 1992, while Tasek Cement
Bhd. was expected to complete the 2,000-mt/d-capacity 
expansion program in Ipoh, Perak, by 
1993. 
 According to an estimate by the Malaysian Ministry of Human Resources, the
total number of persons employed by the mining and quarrying industry rose
to 40,200 from 39,400 in 1991, despite the further decline of employment
in the tin industry. According to the Malaysian Department of Mines, the
number of workers employed by the major nonfuel minerals at the end of 1992
was 84 in barite, 208 in bauxite, 1 , 125 in copper, 505 in gold, 175 in
iron ore, 428 in kaolin, 204 in silica sand, and 4,672 in tin. Additionally,
there were more than 1,000 workers involved in limestone quarrying and 164
coal miners in 1992. Malaysia's total labor force rose from 7.3 million in
1991 to 7.5 million in 1992, while the unemployment rate decreased from 5.6%
in 1991 to 5.3% in 1992 owing mainly to increased employment in the construction,
manufacturing, and service industries. (See table 2.) 
COMMODITY REVIEW 
Metals 
 Aluminum and Bauxite.—Mine production of bauxite declined in 1992
due to a sharp drop in exports. Exports of bauxite declined from 301 ,975
tons in 1991 to 166,040 tons in 1992. Export earnings from bauxite were valued
at $3.2 million in 1992 compared with $4.7 million in 199 1 . Johore Mining
and Stevedoring Co. Sdn. Bhd. , Malaysia's sole bauxite producer, operated
a multiple-bench, open pit mine and a ~ washing plant with a work force of
205 at Bukit Raja around Pengerang Highway 
~ north of Sungai Rengit, east of Johore 
~ Bahru. The washing plant, capable of 
~ milling 1 Mmt/a of ore, produced a monthly average of about 27,550 tons
of ~ washed bauxite with 10 % water content in 1992. The company produced
three grades of bauxite: refractory-grade, metallurgical-grade, and cement-grade.
 In July, a group of foreign investors led by Finland's Kuusakoski Oy (KO)
and ~ Johore State Economic Development Corp. (JSEDC) reached an agreement
to 


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