Malaysia exports continue slide amid global woes

Exports to Europe and China fell the hardest YoY. Nonetheles, a silver lining remains – exports to US appears to be growing, showing the strength of US economy slowly coming back.

Malaysia’s exports, the mainstay of the Southeast Asian country’s economy, continued to fall in August, hit by weak demand from Europe and China.

Overseas shipments fell 4.5 percent year on year to 55.97 billion ringgit ($18.34 billion), the trade ministry said in a statement.

Imports rose 2.8 percent to 48.88 billion mainly due to Malaysia buying more machinery and other capital goods, putting total trade at 104.84 billion ringgit, down from 106.17 billion the previous year.

Alan Tan, an economist at Affin Investment Bank, told AFP: “In view of the global uncertainties, the expectation is that export growth will continue to remain weak in the second half of the year.”

Exports of electrical and electronic products, palm oil and other goods to Europe slumped 24.2 percent to 4.75 billion ringgit year-on-year, the ministry said, as the region is wracked by a long-running debt crisis.

Shipments to China fell 10.6 percent to 7.51 billion ringgit due mainly to lower manufacturing activity and domestic demand, it said. Exports to other Southeast Asian countries dropped 2.9 percent to 13.96 billion ringgit.

However, exports to the United States continued to grow slightly, expanding 4.2 percent to 5.22 billion ringgit, and shipments to Japan, especially of liquefied natural gas, rose 15.4 percent to 7.05 billion ringgit.

From January to August, exports increased 1.5 percent to 465.29 billion ringgit, while imports rose 7.4 percent to 403.5 billion ringgit.

As exports weaken, domestic demand, spurred by pre-election spending, has helped prop up Malaysia’s economy, which is projected to grow about five percent this year.

Via – CNA


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