Malaysia Trade Surplus Largest in a Decade


Malaysia's trade surplus widened sharply to MYR 15.3 billion in September of 2018 from MYR 8.2 billion in the same month of the prior year and easily beating market expectations of a surplus of MYR 7.3 billion. It was the largest trade surplus since September 2008, as exports rebounded while imports shrank unexpectedly.

Year-on-year, exports rose by 6.7 percent to MYR to MYR 83.1 billion in September 2018, after a 0.3 percent fall in August and slightly above market consensus of a 6.5 percent rise. Sales increased for:  electrical & electronic products (6.5  percent to MYR 32.9 billion, 39.6 percent of total exports); refined petroleum products (20.5 percent to MYR 5.7 billion, 6.8 percent share); crude petroleum (54.5 percent to MYR 2.7 billion, 3.2 percent share); and liquefied natural gas/LNG (1.8 percent to MYR 3.1 billion, 3.8 percent share). In contrast, outbound shipments fell for: palm oil and palm oil-based products (-11.5 percent to MYR 5.6 billion; 6.7 percent of total share);  timber and timber-based products (-0.4 percent to 1.8 billion, 2.1 percent of total share); and natural rubber (-1.9 percent to MYR 306. million, 0.4 percent of total share).

Outbound shipments went up to Singapore (8.7 percent); the US (0.1 percent); and  Hong Kong (48.7 percent), while declined to China (-0.6 percent); and Japan (-10.6 percent).

Imports  fell unexpectedly by 2.7 percent from a year earlier to MYR 67.8 billion,  missing expectations of a 9.8 percent gain and after a 11.2 percent growth in a month earlier.  Purchases of intermediate goods dropped 9.3 percent to MYR 35.8 billion, consisting of 52.8 percent of total imports. The decrease was driven by parts & accessories of capital goods, except transport equipment (-24.1 percent); fuel & lubricants, processed, others (-44.8 percent); and fuel & lubricants, primary (-11.5 percent). Also, imports of capital goods shrank 25.2 percent to MYR 7.3 billion, consisting of 10.7 percent share, due to a drop in both transport equipment, industrial (-86 percent) and capital goods except transport equipment (-13.9 percent). In addition, purchases of consumption goods recorded a 10 percent drop to MYR 573.8 million, consisting of 7.6 percent share. The fall was mainly attributed to semi-durables (-31.4 percent); food & beverages, processed, mainly for household consumption (-6.2 percent) and durables (-12.7 percent).

Considering the first nine months of the year, the trade surplus increased to MYR 85.7 billion from MYR 71.2 billion in the same period 2017. 

Malaysia Trade Surplus Largest in a Decade


Statistics Malaysia l Rida | rida@tradingeconomics.com
11/5/2018 6:19:34 AM