Malaysia Trade Hit Fresh Highs in October

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by Chester Tai

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KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysia trade data for October marked another set of record highs, driven by strong external demand as more economies reopen and Covid restrictions are eased.

Data from the Ministry of International Trade and Industry showed on Monday that trade in October rose 26.5% from a year earlier to a record high of 202.61 billion ringgit ($47.80 billion).

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Exports, imports and trade surplus all set new highs in September, marking record lows as well.

October exports grew 25.5% to MYR114.43 billion, while imports grew 27.9% to MYR88.18 billion and the trade surplus grew 17.9% to MYR26.25 billion.

The ministry said export growth was primarily fueled by higher shipments of petroleum products, metal, electrical and electronic products, chemical products and palm oil and palm oil-based agricultural products.

US trade, which accounted for 9.8% of Malaysia’s total trade in October, rose 16.3% to an all-time high of MYR19.92 billion. Exports to the US grew 12.4% to MYR12.62 billion on the back of higher shipments for electrical and electronic products.

Exports to China, another major market, rose 24.8% to MYR17.85 billion, led by metals, iron, steel and chemical products as well as liquefied natural gas.

Data shows that shipments to other major trading partners, including Southeast Asian countries, the European Union and Japan, also registered double-digit growth.

For the first 10 months of 2021, business grew by 23.2% to MYR1.805 trillion. Exports crossed the MYR1 trillion mark, climbing 25.0% to MYR1.004 trillion and exceeding the 2020 annual figure.

Imports grew by 21.8% to MYR801.17 billion during the 10-month period, while trade surplus increased by 39.2% to MYR202.58 billion.

Write to Chester Tay at [email protected]

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