KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 4 — Malaysia’s trade surplus in the first nine months of 2019 widened by 15.3 per cent to RM100.86 billion, compared with RM87.47 billion registered in the same period last year.

This was the largest January-September trade surplus recorded during the last 10 years, the International Trade and Industry Ministry (MITI) said in a statement today.

In September 2019, the trade surplus was valued at RM8.34 billion, a decline of 46.5 per cent year-on-year.

On a monthly basis, total trade, exports, imports and trade surplus declined 3.1 per cent, 4.5 per cent, 1.6 per cent and 23.5 per cent, respectively.

Total trade in the third quarter of 2019 (3Q19) contracted 3.7 per cent to RM460.53 billion compared to Q3 2018.

Total exports reached RM247.02 billion, 1.9 per cent lower from the same period last year while imports contracted 5.8 per cent to RM213.51 billion.

The trade surplus in 3Q19 recorded double-digit growth of 33.3 per cent to RM33.51 billion from RM25.14 billion registered in the same quarter of last year.

Exports of manufactured goods in September 2019 contracted 5.8 per cent to RM66.34 billion or 85.4 per cent of total exports, mainly due to lower exports of electrical and electronic (E&E) products, petroleum products, chemicals and chemical products as well as textiles, apparels and footwear.

However, increases were registered in exports of transport equipment, optical and scientific equipment as well as machinery, equipment and parts.

Exports of mining goods (7.3 per cent share) declined 15.2 per cent to RM5.69 billion due to lower exports of crude petroleum following lower volume and Average Unit Value (AUV).

Exports of agriculture goods (6.7 per cent share) down 8.3 per cent to RM5.17 billion due to lower exports of palm oil and palm oil-based agriculture products, especially palm oil which declined 9.3 per cent to RM3.05 billion following lower volume and AUV.

Trade with ASEAN in September 2019, which made up 26.2 per cent of total trade decreased by 8.1 per cent y-o-y to RM38.54 billion.

Exports to ASEAN decreased by 8.6 per cent to RM21.62 billion, owing to lower exports of E&E products.

Trade with China rebounded 3.8 per cent y-o-y in September 2019 after declining 7.9 per cent in August, while trade with the European Union (EU) decreased by 3.3 per cent y-o-y to RM13.47 billion.

Meanwhile, trade with the United States in September 2019 rose 3.8 per cent y-o-y to RM13.79 billion, accounting for 9.4 per cent of Malaysia’s total trade.

— BERNAMA

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