Wanted – cheaper automated rubber tapping device

KUALA LUMPUR: The Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (Mosti) is seeking to introduce an affordable automated rubber tapping device as one way to overcome the worker shortage.

Minister Datuk Seri Wilfred Madius Tangau said, at present, the sector has a problem bringing in foreign workers.

“We have planted hundreds of thousands of rubber trees through a government assistance scheme, but we are facing a challenge in tapping these trees as we can’t bring in foreign workers.

“So what is the solution? (For Mosti) the solution is to automate it, and we have to come up with an innovative device that does not just tap the trees but also collects the latex,” he told reporters here yesterday.

Earlier, Madius opened the Second Technology and Applications for Disaster Management International Conference organised by Astronautic Tecnology (M) Sdn Bhd.

He said although such a device already exists and is used by the Malaysian Rubber Board, its operating cost is too high.– Bernama