Malaysia remains top among Asean in trade with China

China’s President Xi Jinping (right) greets Najib Razak at the Great Hall of the People on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) meetings in Beijing, November 10, 2014. — Reuters file pic
China’s President Xi Jinping (right) greets Najib Razak at the Great Hall of the People on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) meetings in Beijing, November 10, 2014. — Reuters file pic

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BEIJING, Jan 13 — Malaysia remains China’s top trading partner among Asean’s 10 member nations despite the slowdown in the volume of trade in 2014.

Trade between Malaysia and China reached US$102 billion (RM363.5 billion), down 3.8 per cent compared with an 11.8 per cent hike registered in 2013, according to data released by the General Administration of Customs (GAC) today.

Last year, trade between Malaysia and China hit a historic high of US$106 billion, with the trade volume exceeding US$100 billion.

Malaysia has been China’s largest Asean trading partner for six consecutive years since 2008, and is also China’s third-biggest trading partner in Asia after Japan and South Korea.

The two nations pledged to increase bilateral trade to US$160 billion by 2017 after Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s official visit to China in May last year.

The Customs Administration said bilateral trade between China and Asean slowed by 8.3 per cent year-on-year (y-o-y ) to US$480 billion in 2014, down from 10.9 per cent annual growth recorded in 2013.

Two-way trade hit US$444 billion in 2013, up from US$400 billion in 2012.

The data showed exports from China rose 11.5 per cent y-o-y to US$272 billion in 2014, while its imports from Asean countries grew by 4.4 per cent to US$208 billion from a year ago.

Asean was China’s third-largest trading partner in 2014 after the European Union (up 9.9 per cent y-o-y to US$615 billion) and the United States (up 6.6 per cent y-o-y to US$555 billion). — Bernama

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