Malaysian Fabric Manufacturing – Where the Industry Stands Today

May 31, 2019


Throughout Malaysia, fabric manufacturers have established their businesses and built their reputations on one thing above all else: quality and competition. The textile and textile product industry is thriving throughout the country, and for entrepreneurs who are looking either to invest their capital or launch their own fabric manufacturing business, there is perhaps no place more conducive to fast, reliable success than Malaysia. Here, the upside to doing business is strong for multiple reasons, which means not only that there are reliable professionals operating here but also that there is an opportunity for ambitious professionals to make their mark as well.

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Davinci / Collection

Low Barriers to Entry

To those who aspire to launch their own fabric manufacturing businesses in Malaysia, here is some encouraging news: the barriers to entry are exceedingly low. The Malaysian government has taken steps to encourage new businesses by minimizing regulations and initiation procedures. If you are equipped with supplies, will power, capital, and management ability, you can get started in fabric manufacturing fairly easily. This is not to say, of course, that buyers should expect anything but the finest fabrics in Malaysia.

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Delegate / Collection

High Competition

While it may on the surface seem counter-intuitive, the low barriers to entry in the Malaysian fabric manufacturing industry actually lead to a higher quality level overall throughout the country. This is because lower barriers to entry create a lower opportunity cost, which in turn creates higher levels of competition within the industry. Thus, while there may not be a lot of outside forces preventing anyone from launching their own fabric manufacturing business in Malaysia, there are extremely competitive forces that foster a sense of pride and certain expectations for all fabric manufacturing firms, new and old alike.

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Delegate / Collection

A Thriving Export Industry  

Within the last two years, the fabric manufacturing industry in Malaysia has reached new heights, rising to become the eleventh-largest earner among all industries exporting from Malaysia. This rank equates to more than RM15.3 billion, totaling 1.6% of all the goods that Malaysia exports as a whole. These are big numbers, and they make it clear just why the industry is so competitive (because so many entrepreneurs and firms want to find a way to earn a piece of the pie).

The largest single distributor of imported Belgian fabrics in Malaysia is Acacia Fabrics, a firm that has built a formidable brand for itself in South East Asia. For entrepreneurs who are interested in launching their businesses, Acacia Fabrics is an excellent starting point, their partnerships with Belgian converters both powerful and strategic, their designs unique, and their products eco-friendly. Since 1994, Acacia has taken part in hundreds of projects, operating all around the globe.

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Naturelle / Collection

Reliable Revenues

The United States remains the leading importer for all of the fabric products that Malaysia exports, accounting for 14.6% of total revenue. Because the US economy is so strong and because it has been able to withstand challenges and strife historically, this means that the revenues the Malaysian fabric manufacturing industry generate are reliable and that they will not disappear overnight. Nothing like a fad market, fabric manufacturers in Malaysia have all the weight of the modern global economy behind them.

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Naturelle / Collection


Although Malaysia is synonymous with quality to many leading brands that use Malaysian fabrics, there are competitors within the region. The main competitors include Indonesia, Vietnam, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, China, Cambodia, and Bangladesh, though if anything, this lower-cost competition has only led to even stronger results for Malaysia, which has fostered smarter processes and more efficient distribution and manufacturing tech adoption. Just as the overall maturity of the industry does, these advances have yielded higher product quality levels.

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Ultra Dim / Collection


Individual firms within Malaysia may specialize at one fabric or another, but there is no specialization hindering the country from reaching its full market potential. Rather, the Malaysian fabric manufacturing industry is extremely versatile, and it includes firms that produce a wide variety of fabrics and techniques: natural fiber, synthetic fiber, natural yarn, woven yarn, knitted fabrics, woven fabrics, non-woven fabrics, bleached fabrics, dyed fabrics, finished fabrics, and printed fabrics. On top of all these fabric types and techniques, Malaysia fabric manufacturers have also won acclaim for their ability to offer customers ready-to-wear apparel, home textile products, and industrial textile products.

There is nothing standing between fabric manufacturers in Malaysia and true, unfettered success. Foreign investors have taken notice, dropping RM322.3 million into the industry, and there are more and more job openings at firms (which spring up regularly). More frequently as well, the jobs that are available within the Malaysian fabric manufacturing industry are not simply labor-oriented: they are skilled jobs that require higher education, raising the per capita within the country by pushing Malaysian citizens to become scientists, technicians, and engineers.

Long-term, fabric manufacturers in Malaysia seem like they are guaranteed growth and stability. The Malaysian fabric manufacturing industry has become intertwined with such a multitude of other industries that they are in a sense disruption-resistant as well. While costs may drop in other locations where costs are lower already, the achievements of the Malaysian fabric manufacturing industry are undeniable – and the quality of the fabrics beyond reproach, sure to continue to attract businesses and consumers who are looking for something above-average, something they can trust, and something they can be proud to buy.

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