KUALA LUMPUR: Exports contracted in February underpinned by lower commodity prices and weak global demand.
The International Trade and Industry Ministry said the 9.7 per cent drop compared to a year ago was in tandem with others in the region.
Weaker demand from China and the European Union coupled with the shorter working days due to the Lunar New Year holidays were among the contributing factors.
For February, Malaysia’s total trade amounted to RM101.81 billion.
The contribution of manufactured goods rose to 78 per cent, mostly from machinery, appliances and parts (food processing machines and parts), optical and scientific equipment (disposable tubes for intravenous fluids, cannulae and the like), textiles, clothings and footwear as well as processed food.
Exports of refined petroleum products however, declined by RM1.59 billion with lower average unit value (AUV) by 32.5 per cent, impacting the export performance of manufactured goods.
Total imports in February 2015 increased by 0.4% to RM48.65 billion from February.
In terms of markets, MITI said exports to the USA remained strong, expanding by 8.2 per cent, driven mainly by higher exports of electrical and electronic (E&E) products.