Malaysia’s total trade in the first eight months of 2019 dropped 2.1 per cent year-on-year (YoY) to RM1.21 trillion from RM1.23 trillion recorded a year ago, according to the International Trade and Industry Ministry. NST pix Faiz Anuar

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s total trade in the first eight months of 2019 dropped 2.1 per cent year-on-year (YoY) to RM1.21 trillion from RM1.23 trillion recorded a year ago, according to the International Trade and Industry Ministry.

Malaysia’s exports during the period eased 0.4 per cent to RM650.81 billion from RM653.46 billion, while imports contracted 4.0 per cent to RM558.26 billion from RM581.56 billion previously.

Malaysia’s trade surplus from January to August 2019 increased 28.7 per cent to RM92.55 billion from RM71.90 billion.

In August, the country’s trade surplus surged 655.2 per cent to RM10.92 billion from RM1.45 billion recorded previously.

Exports slipped 0.8 per cent YoY to RM81.36 billion in August from RM81.98 billion, due to lower exports to Hong Kong, Australia, Taiwan, China, New Zealand, Korea and Asean.

Malaysia’s imports for August contracted 12.5 per cent to RM70.43 billion from RM80.54 billion previously.

Overall trade for August reduced 6.6 per cent YoY to RM151.79 billion from RM162.52 billion.

The ministry said exports of manufactured goods in August, which accounted for 84.4 per cent of Malaysia’s total exports, grew 0.1 per cent to RM68.64 billion.

“The expansion was contributed mainly by higher exports of manufactures of metal, transport equipment, iron and steel products, petroleum products, processed food as well as machinery, equipment and parts,” it said.

Exports of mining goods in August, which represented 7.4 per cent of the country’s total exports, went down 20.7 per cent to RM6.01 billion attributable to lower exports of crude petroleum registering lower volume and Average Unit Value (AUV).

Exports of agriculture goods rose 13 per cent to RM5.98 billion, buoyed by higher exports of palm oil and palm oil-based agriculture products.

Meanwhile, exports of palm oil registered an increase of 31.4 per cent to RM3.65 billion following higher volume.

Among major exports in August were electrical and electronic (E&E) products valued at RM29.67 billion (36.5 per cent of Malaysia’s total exports); petroleum products with RM5.43 billion (6.7 per cent of total exports); chemicals and chemical products with RM4.77 billion (5.9 per cent of total exports; palm oil and palm oil-based agriculture products with RM4.08 billion (5.0 per cent of total exports) and manufactures of metal with RM3.96 billion (4.9 per cent of total exports).

From January to August, Malaysia’s exports of manufactured goods grew 0.7 per cent to RM548.34 billion led by higher exports of iron and steel products, E&E products, processed food as well as chemicals and chemical products.

Exports of mining goods contracted 3.8 per cent to RM54.51 billion due mainly to lower exports of crude petroleum.

Exports of agriculture goods decreased 4.2 per cent to RM43.05 billion owing to lower exports of palm oil and palm oil-based agriculture products.

Malaysia’s trade with Asean in August, which made up 26.2 per cent of the country’s total trade, decreased 8.5 per cent YoY to RM39.78 billion.

Exports to Asean decreased 1.2 per cent to RM22.92 billion, owing to lower exports of E&E products, petroleum products, jewellery as well as palm oil and palm oil-based agriculture products.

However, machinery, equipment and parts, iron and steel products and crude petroleum recorded expansion. Imports from Asean contracted 16.9 per cent to RM16.87 billion.

From January to August, trade with Asean contracted 3.5 per cent to RM321.88 billion.

Exports in the region expanded 0.6 per cent to RM187.48 billion, led by higher exports of iron and steel products, E&E products, machinery, equipment and parts, liquefied natural gas (LNG) as well as petroleum condensates and other petroleum oil.

Meanwhile, imports in Asean slipped 8.6 per cent to RM134.39 billion.

Trade with the European Union (EU), which contributed 9.5 per cent to Malaysia’s total trade in August, fell 7.8 per cent YoY to RM14.47 billion.

Malaysia’s exports rose 5.3 per cent YoY to RM8.05 billion backed by larger exports of E&E products, palm oil-based manufactured products, transport equipment and processed food.

Imports from the EU totalled RM6.42 billion, down by 20.3 per cent.

Malaysia’s top EU markets for exports included the Netherlands, the United Kingdom (UK), Spain and Hungary. During the first eight months of 2019, Malaysia’s trade with the EU reduced 4.0 per cent to RM118.69 billion.

The country’s exports amounted to RM65.46 billion, contracted by 1.4 per cent due to lower exports of manufactures of metal, palm oil and palm oil-based agriculture products as well as chemicals and chemical products.

However, imports from the EU decreased 7.1 per cent to RM53.24 billion.

Meanwhile, Malaysia’s trade with the United States (US) in August grew 3.8 per cent YoY to RM14.44 billion, accounting for 9.5 per cent of the total trade.

Exports to the US continued to grow for five consecutive months with an expansion of 6.8 per cent YoY to RM8.32 billion in August 2019, buoyed by higher exports of E&E products, transport equipment, wood products as well as manufactures of plastics.

Imports from the US rose marginally by 0.1 per cent to RM6.11 billion.

For the first eight months of 2019, Malaysia’s trade with the US grew 4.9 per cent to RM106.48 billion, with exports rose 4.3 per cent to RM61.77 billion driven by higher exports of E&E products, wood products, manufactures of plastics, processed food and rubber products.

Imports from the US also increased 5.6 per cent to RM44.71 billion.

Malaysia’s trade in August with Free Trade Agreement (FTA) partners, which constituted 61.9 per cent of the country’s total trade, stood at RM93.95 billion, a decline of 6.6 per cent YoY.

Exports to FTA partners reduced 2.4 per cent to RM49.09 billion, while imports totalled RM44.86 billion, recording a contraction of 10.8 per cent.

Trade with FTA partners for the first 8 months of 2019, which made up 62 per cent of Malaysia’s total trade, amounted to RM749.14 billion, recording a contraction of 2.5 per cent.

Exports were valued at RM398.81 billion, while imports at RM350.33 billion.

Total imports in August 2019 contracted 12.5 per cent to RM70.43 billion from RM80.54 billion in the same period previously.

The three main categories of imports by end use, which accounted for 75.7 per cent of total imports were intermediate goods, capital goods and consumption goods, each valued at RM39.02 billion; RM8.06 billion and RM6.22 billion, respectively.

During January to August 2019, Malaysia’s imports reduced 4.0 per cent to RM558.26 billion with intermediate goods totalled RM306.84 billion, capital goods (RM65.59 billion) and consumption goods (RM48.38 billion).

Ends

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