Furniture titan Poh Huat freezes Malaysian ops after 543 workers down with Covid-19

PJ Polyclinic health workers conduct a Covid-19 swab test using the RTK-Antigen Covid-19 Kit in Dewan Serbaguna MBPJ in Petaling Jaya. The test will be conducted until this Friday for a fee RM70 January 19, 2020. — Picture by Hari Anggara
PJ Polyclinic health workers conduct a Covid-19 swab test using the RTK-Antigen Covid-19 Kit in Dewan Serbaguna MBPJ in Petaling Jaya. The test will be conducted until this Friday for a fee RM70 January 19, 2020. — Picture by Hari Anggara

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KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 26 — Poh Huat Resources Holdings Berhad said today that it was suspending the operations of subsidiary Poh Huat Furniture Industries (PHFI) Sdn Bhd that discovered 543 workers infected with Covid-19.

In its filing to Bursa Malaysia today, the firm said PHFI conducted a voluntary Covid-19 screening of its entire workforce on January 21 at all its factories in the Bukit Pasir Industrial Area in Muar, as a precaution against the worsening pandemic.

“The screening exercise which covered approximately 1,400 employees of all the plant premises and corporate offices of these subsidiaries in Bukit Pasir, Muar, Johor, revealed that 543 of employees have tested positive for Covid-19.

“PHFI is cooperating and working closely with the Ministry of Health (MOH) to implement the mitigating steps to contain the spread of Covid-19 at the premises, and safeguard the health of employees who may have been exposed to the virus.

“The group has also taken an additional step to temporarily suspend the Malaysia operations from January 25 to February 3 or further advised by MOH. The group’s Vietnam operation is free from Covid-19 related incidents and remains in full operations,” the firm said in the filing.

It said that the temporary closure of PHFI operations here is expected to delay the shipment of several orders to its customers in the US, adding that the management was discussing with affected customers for rescheduling of delivery dates.

However, it said it did not foresee any adverse impact to the group beyond the cost incurred for the swab tests, disinfection process and daily meal allowance to foreign workers.

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