SINGAPORE (July 22): Apart from topping the charts for its supernormal earnings, Top Glove seems to be at the top of authorities’ watch list.

The glove manufacturer’s headquarters in Meru, Klang was raided by officers from Malaysia’s Human Resources Ministry, following allegations of a breach in movement control order rules and housing of foreign staff in cramped quarters.

The authorities have since cleared the company of imposing forced labour.

“Top Glove [has been] compounded by the Ministry of Health Malaysia and was issued a compliance notice by the Ministry Housing and Local Government. However, no offense involving elements of forced labour were found,” the authorities said in a July 21 statement.

The authorities say the raid was carried out two days before Top Glove was barred by US Customs on July 15. The company cites labour-related issues as the cause of the detention order placed on the gloves manufactured by two of its subsidiaries – Top Glove Sdn Bhd and TG Medical Sdn Bhd.

See: Top Glove shares fall on detention order from US Customs and Border Protection

Touching on this, the Human Resources Ministry said, it is “aware that the impact of the US Customs detention order will affect the credibility and image of the country internationally and influence foreign investor confidence following the allegations of forced labour”.

In response to the news, Top Glove said it had been awarded an ‘A’ rating during a social audit by Amfori between May 23 and May 26. The rating is the result of the company scoring “very good” for 12 categories and one “good” across the performance areas assessed.

Amfori is a global business association focused on open and sustainable trade.

Said William Yap, Top Glove’s general manager of human resources,” The recent Amfori audit and earlier third-party audits which garnered good ratings, provide independent verification that there is no element of forced labour in our manufacturing facilities”.

Top Glove’s shares took a dive after news of it being barred by the US Customs broke. As at 1.54pm, the counter was down 6 cents or 0.728% to $8.18.