Malaysian exports in November rose 7.8% year-on-year to MYR72.83 billion (US$16.27 billion), posting the highest monthly exports in the first 11 months of the year.
The expansion was supported by robust demand from major markets like ASEAN, China, European Union, U.S., Hong Kong, and India, said the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) in an official release.
Imports in the month grew by 11.2% to MYR63.8 billion compared to the year-ago level. Total trade rose 9.3% to MYR136.63 billion, while the trade surplus stood at MYR9.03 billion, making it the 229th consecutive month of trade surplus since November 1997.
The report said that in November 2016, exports of manufactured goods grew 7.9% year-on-year to MYR58.32 billion, accounting for 80.1% of Malaysia’s total exports.
Electrical and electronic products expanded 13.2% to MYR3.06 billion, the fastest growth recorded thus far for 2016, MITI said.
In the same month, exports of agricultural goods increased 22.4% to MYR6.9 billion, led by higher exports of palm oil and palm-based agriculture products. Increases in exports were also recorded for chemicals and chemical products, transport equipment, processed food, iron and steel products, as well as optical and scientific equipment, MITI said.
However, exports of mining goods were down 6.9% to MYR7.01 billion due to the decline in exports of liquefied natural gas and crude petroleum.
Meanwhile, the Southeast Asian country’s exports in the first 11 months of 2016 were higher by 0.2% to MYR710.38 billion, while imports increased by 1% to MYR631.83 billion. Total trade for the first 11 months of 2016 increased by 0.5% to MYR1.342 trillion compared to the corresponding period in 2015, with a trade surplus of MYR78.55 billion.
For the first 11 months of last year, exports of manufactured goods increased by 2.6% to MYR584.54 billion. Manufactured exports contributed 82.3% to total exports as compared to 80.4% during the same period last year.
In the same period, exports of electrical and electronic products rose 3% to MYR260.68 billion, constituting 36.7% of total exports, while outbound shipments of chemicals and chemical products increased by 5.8% to MYR53.38 billion.
Palm oil and palm-based agriculture products also added 4.6% to reach MYR43.86 billion, while machinery, equipment and parts improved 5.9% to MYR34.67 billion.
The report noted though that petroleum products decreased 4.2% to MYR48.78 billion in the first 11 months of the year.
The report said exports to ASEAN expanded by 9.8% in November 2016 year-on-year to MYR20.88 billion, improving from the 2.6% decline registered in October 2016.
“Exports to ASEAN accounted for 28.7% of Malaysia’s total exports. The increase in exports was mainly contributed by manufactured goods, which grew significantly by 9.5 per cent to RM18.6 billion,” it said.
For the first 11 months of the year, exports to ASEAN rose 4.8% to MYR209.15 billion.
In November 2016, exports to China were valued at MYR10.93 billion, up 12% from a year ago, mainly contributed by higher exports of electrical and electronic products, palm oil and palm-based agriculture products, as well as chemicals and chemical products. From January to November 2016, exports to China were down 5.2% to MYR88.33 billion.
In November 2016, exports to the U.S. rose 9.9% year-on-year to MYR6.67 billion, mainly contributed by higher exports of electrical and electronic products, petroleum products, and machinery. For January to November 2016, exports to the North American nation expanded 9.7% to MYR73.06 billion.
Photo: Jaime VD