A momentous groundbreaking ceremony took place in Mukim Merchang on 16th May, marking the commencement of the first and largest integrated project in Asia and Oceania for the production of cristobalite and ultra-purity industrial silica. With an investment of more than RM500 million, TRG Silica (Marang) Sdn. Bhd. a wholly-owned Malaysian company is setting a milestone to build a state-of-the-art facility with 7th generation equipment and also encompasses the development of a new private terminal known as Marang terminal.
The project’s primary objective is to produce advanced silica minerals with the highest purity level and very low iron content that is highly demanded by the downstream industry of high-end glass. In the meantime, the project will be the first in Asia and Oceania to develop high-temperature polymorph of silica – cristobalite, characterised by its high abrasion resistance and intensive white pigment.
The ceremony was graced by Duli Yang Maha Mulia Al-Wathiqu Billah Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin ibni Almarhum Sultan Mahmud Al-Muktafi Billah Shah, Sultan of Terengganu, and among the attendees were from the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry (MITI), led by Datuk Hanafi Sakri, Deputy Secretary General (Industry) and representatives from the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA).
The project is aligned with objectives to spearhead local economic development through various businesses and provide high-quality job opportunities for domestic stakeholders, especially in Marang, Terengganu. YAB Dato’ Seri Dr. Ahmad Samsuri Mokhtar, Menteri Besar of Terengganu said, “It is my hope that the investment will be able to contribute to the economic growth of Terengganu and the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) as well as elevate the standard of living of the local community and indirectly improving socio-economic status of the rakyat in Terengganu, particularly rural area.”
Datuk Wira Arham Abdul Rahman, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) stated, “Kudos to TRG Silica (Marang) Sdn. Bhd. for their innovative spirit. With their state-of-the-art facility and the development of Marang Terminal, Terengganu is poised to become a powerhouse in the global industrial minerals market. This venture will not only revolutionise our production capabilities but also create exciting opportunities for our local workforce.”
Industry players are urged to leverage the availability of these materials in the country to enhance and diversify their supply chains, particularly for high-end glass applications such as electronic display glass, smartphone glass, ultra-thin solar glass, semiconductors, and ophthalmic glass. Additionally, cristobalite has wide-ranging applications in various sectors, including engineered stone, coatings, polymers, dentistry, road marking, and other industrial applications. Leveraging these resources can yield substantial benefits and bolster the overall competitiveness of the industry.
“This remarkable collaboration between the company and other industry players will fuel the development of a robust supply chain. It is an invitation for stakeholders to harness these resources and drive innovation in advanced manufacturing.”, added Datuk Wira Arham.
In the meantime, Y.A.M Tengku Sri Temenggung Raja D.K, S.S.M.T Dato’ Seri Tengku Baharuddin ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Mahmud Al-Muktafi Billah Shah, Group Chairman of TRG Silica (Marang) Sdn. Bhd. underscored the company’s commitment towards the development of downstream industry via collaboration with MIDA to attract foreign investments in the specialty glass industry. Additionally, he also said, “this cristobalite and ultra-purity industrial silica is a pioneer project for decarbonisation under mineral industry by MITI.”
TRG Silica (Marang) Sdn. Bhd. upholds sustainability values that have been deeply rooted since its parent company, TRG Industrial Minerals Sdn. Bhd., was established in 2010. With a strong commitment to minimising environmental impact and promoting responsible practices, the company implements decarbonisation and Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) initiatives. Through its “Decoding the Future of Sustainability in Mining and Mineral Processing” initiative, the company aims to develop a sustainable domestic supply chain, fostering economic growth and creating high-quality job opportunities in the process.
The demand for “Ultra Purity Silica” produced by TRG Silica (Marang) Sdn. Bhd. is driven by the industry’s need to produce “low-iron glass” that offers maximum brightness and clarity compared to normal glass. This high-quality silica is sought after by manufacturers in various industries, including high-end glass applications, due to its exceptional purity and low iron content.