KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 2 ― Malaysia recorded a trade surplus of RM10.26 billion in June which was 71 per cent higher compared to the same month of the previous year and marking the 260th consecutive month of trade surplus since November 1997.
“On a month-on-month (m-o-m) basis, the trade surplus recorded a double-digit growth of 13.1 per cent, while total trade, exports and imports were down by 10.8 per cent, 9.5 per cent and 12.2 per cent respectively,” the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) said in a statement.
However, Malaysia’s trade in June contracted by six per cent from the same month of 2018 to RM142.08 billion.
According to MITI, exports were down by 3.1 per cent to RM76.17 billion, with imports 9.2 per cent lower at RM65.91 billion.
It said lower trade was recorded with China, Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore and Japan.
In contrast, higher trade was recorded with India, the Philippines and the United States.
For the six months of 2019, total trade decreased by one per cent to RM895.95 billion compared to the same period of 2018, while exports declined 0.2 per cent to RM481.53 billion and imports shrank by 1.8 per cent to RM414.42 billion.
For second quarter alone, trade was 0.4 lower at RM460.78 billion with imports dropping 1.2 per cent to RM215.32 billion, while in contrast, exports were 0.2 per cent better at RM245.46 billion.
MITI said exports of manufactured goods in June, which accounted for 83.7 per cent of total exports, declined five per cent to RM63.79 billion, impacted by lower exports of electrical and electronic products (E&E), manufactures of metal, machinery, equipment and parts, rubber products and wood products.
Exports of agriculture goods (6.3 per cent share) declined by 0.8 per cent to RM4.82 billion despite an increase in exports of palm oil and palm oil-based agriculture products, primarily palm oil, which rose by 7.9 per cent to RM2.83 billion following higher volume.
As for major exports in June, electrical and electronics (E&E) products valued at RM28.08 billion constituted 36.9 per cent of total exports, an increase of six per cent from June 2018.
Petroleum products at RM6.10 billion and eight per cent of total exports, decreased by 2.4 per cent.
Chemicals and chemical products registered RM4.57 billion or six per cent of total exports, an increase of 1.3 per cent and manufactures of metal recorded RM3.37 billion or 4.4 per cent of total exports, decreased by 15.7 per cent.
On the trade performance with major markets, Malaysia’s trade with Asean in June accounted for 26.5 per cent of the country’s total trade and slipped 5.5 per cent year-on-year to RM37.65 billion.
Exports to Asean dropped 0.2 per cent to RM21.78 billion on the back of lower exports of E&E, petroleum products, transport equipment and processed food.
Imports from Asean decreased by 11.9 per cent to RM15.87 billion.
In June, trade with China which comprised 16.5 per cent of Malaysia’s total trade or RM23.51 billion, saw a dip of 12.4 per cent y-o-y.
Exports totalled RM10.07 billion, decreasing by 12 per cent due to lower exports of E&E products, and the manufacture of metal as well as petroleum products.
Imports from China contracted by 12.6 per cent to RM13.44 billion.
Total trade with the European Union (EU) which accounted for 9.9 per cent of Malaysia’s total trade in June, slipped by 2.9 per cent y-o-y to RM14.12 billion.
Exports increased by one per cent to RM7.74 billion, underpinned by higher exports of petroleum products and palm oil-based manufactured products.
Trade with the United States in June grew by 5.8 per cent y-o-y to RM12.8 billion, constituting nine per cent of Malaysia’s total trade. Exports registered a 8.8 per cent to RM7.65 billion and imports rose 1.7 per cent to RM5.16 billion. ― Bernama