Malaysia’s January-October trade surpasses RM2 trillion

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s total trade surpassed the RM2 trillion mark from January to October this year, reaching RM2.181 trillion, with exports amounting to RM1.186 trillion while imports were valued at RM995.55 billion.

“Trade, exports and imports each posted an 8% decrease compared to the corresponding period last year, while trade surplus was lower by 7.9%, amounting to RM190.04 billion,” the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry (Miti) said in a statement yesterday.

“On a month-on-month (m-o-m) basis, Malaysia’s trade in October 2023 expanded by 6.8% to RM239.52 billion. Exports increased by 1.5% to RM126.19 billion and imports registered a double-digit growth of 13.4% to RM113.33 billion.

“Trade surplus reached RM12.87 billion, marking the 42nd consecutive month of trade surplus since May 2020,” it added.

Miti said Malaysia’s trade for October 2023 declined at a softer pace of 2.4% year-on-year (y-o-y), compared with the double-digit decrease reported in the previous month. Exports eased by 4.4% and imports reduced marginally by 0.2%.

“Malaysia’s performance was similar with its key trading partners, notably China, Taiwan, and Indonesia which experienced negative trade growth in October 2023 and a reduction in global imports,” it noted.

In October 2023, Miti said exports of manufactured goods, constituting 85.3% or RM107.59 billion of total exports, slipped by 3.5% y-o-y as a result of lower demand for petroleum products as well as electrical and electronic (E&E) products.

However, it said exports of transport equipment, processed food, machinery, equipment and parts, manufactures of metal, paper and pulp products as well as wood products, registered expansion.

“Exports of agriculture goods (7.1% share) improved by 3.3% to RM8.9 billion compared to October 2022, marking its first positive growth after twelve consecutive months of decline. Exports of mining goods (6.9% share) dipped by 21.9% y-o-y to RM8.75 billion attributed to lesser exports of liquefied natural gas and crude petroleum,” it said.

E&E products, which were valued at RM49.23 billion and accounted for 39% of total exports, decreased by 2.3% compared to October 2022.

On a m-o-m basis, the ministry said exports of agriculture and mining goods rose by 10.7 and 10.4%, respectively while exports of manufactured goods declined marginally.

For the period of January to October 2023, exports of manufactured goods weakened by 6.3% to RM1.016 trillion compared to the same period in 2022, attributed to lower exports of petroleum products, palm oil-based manufactured products and rubber products.

However, exports of processed food, paper and pulp products as well as transport equipment recorded strong growth.

“Exports of mining goods declined by 12.8% to RM84.92 billion owing to lower shipments of LNG and crude petroleum due to lower commodity prices.

“Exports of agriculture goods dropped by 23% to RM77.74 billion, underpinned by lesser exports of palm oil and palm oil-based agriculture products following the decrease in export prices of palm oil,” it said.

In October 2023, trade with Asean rebounded by 1.7% y-o-y, and took up 26.9%, or RM64.39 billion of Malaysia’s total trade.

“Exports fell by 5.7% to RM36.57 billion due to lower exports of E&E products and petroleum products. But contraction was partially offset by increased exports of chemicals and chemical products, coupled with palm oil and palm oil-based agriculture products.

“Imports from Asean recorded double-digit growth of 13.4% to RM27.82 billion,” it said.

Miti said among Malaysia’s major export markets in Asean that recorded double-digit growth were Vietnam and Philippines, buoyed by higher exports of petroleum products. – Bernama

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