Malaysia Trade Surplus Widens in July
Malaysia's trade surplus increased sharply to MYR 8.0 billion in July of 2017 from MYR 1.9 billion in the same month of the prior year and beating market estimates of a MYR 6.5 billion surplus.
In July, sales increased 30.9 percent from a year earlier to MYR 78.6 billion in July of 2017, accelerating from a 10.0 percent gain in June. Still, it was the ninth straight month of growth in outbound shipments, driven by electrical & electronic products (28.3 percent to MYR 27.9 billion, 35.5 percent of total exports), liquefied natural gas (50.8 percent to MYR 3.8 billion, 4.8 percent of total exports), palm oil and palm based products (12.0 percent to MYR 6.4 billion, 8.1 percent of total exports), natural rubber (19.4 percent to MYR 324.1 million, 0.4 percent of total exports), refined petroleum products (85.4 percent to MYR 6.3 billion, 8.0 percent of total exports), and timber and timber-based products (19.8 percent to MYR 1.9 billion, 24 percent of total exports). In contrast, outbound shipments fell for crude petroleum (-2.1 percent to MYR 2.0 billion, 2.6 percentt of total exports).
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Exports increased to China (28.8 percent), Singapore (32.3 percent), the USA (14.4 percent), the EU countries (34.1 percent), and ASEAN countries (33.8 percent).
Imports rose 21.8 percent to MYR 70.6 billion, following a 3.7 percent rise in the prior month. Still, it marked the eighth straight month of increase in inbound shipments. Purchases of intermediate goods went up 24.2 percent to MYR 39.9 billion, driven by parts & accessories of capital goods, except transport equipment (28.3 percent); industrial supplies, processed (29.9 percent). Imports of consumption goods went up 21.8 percent to MYR 6 billion, driven by semi-durables (15.2 percent), non-durables (20.4 percent), and food and beverages, processed mainly for house consumption (34.7 percent). In contrast, imports of of capital goods fell 16.5 percent to MYR 9.2 billion, due to the decrease capital goods except transport equipment (-20.4 percent) while transport equipment recorded an increase 31.4 percent.
In June 2017, the trade surplus came in at MYR 9.9 billion.