Tin mining is one of the oldest industries in Malaysia, having been mined for centuries along the river banks. These mines were small and their methods primitive. Then in the early 1800s, large tin deposits were discovered in the Peninsula’s west coast states of Perak and Selangor, and the industry developed into one of the major contributor to the Malaysian economy. At one point, Malaysia was the world's largest tin producer and supplied more than half of the world's tin until the mid-1980 when the prices of tin fell by as much as 50 percent and the industry collapsed.
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Tin mines at Kampar in Ipoh, Malaysia. circa 1910. Photo: Wikimedia Commons