by HARIZAH KAMEL / FILE PIX
MALAYSIA’S total exports recorded the highest monthly export value of RM95.7 billion, an increase of 10.8% compared to the same month in 2019, outpacing import growth for eight consecutive months.
The Department of Statistics Malaysia (DoSM) reported today in External Trade Statistics, December 2020 report that after nine consecutive months of decline, imports rebounded to post a growth of 1.6% to RM75.0 billion.
Chief statistician Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin said Malaysia’s exports continued its positive momentum in December 2020 and that the expansion in exports was supported by both re-exports and domestic exports.
“Re-exports stood at RM17.6 billion contributed 18.4% to the total exports, surged by 22.9%. While the domestic export was valued at RM78.1 billion, grew by 8.3% year-on-year (YoY).
“Trade surplus soared by 64.9% to RM20.7 billion YoY. Total trade in December 2020 amounted to RM170.8 billion widened by 6.5% as compared to December 2019,” he said in a statement today.
DoSM also reported that the expansion in exports was supported mainly by higher exports to Singapore (+RM2.2 billion), China (+RM1.9 billion), the US (+RM1.7 billion), India (+RM1.62 billion), Hong Kong (+RM1.60 billion) and the EU (+RM988.1 million).
Meanwhile, increases in imports were mainly from China (+RM2.1 billion), India (+RM772.9 million), Hong Kong (+RM518.7 million) and Taiwan (+RM466.0 million).
The main products which contributed to the increase in exports were electrical and electronic (E&E) products (+RM5.6 billion), rubber products (+RM3.0 billion) and palm oil and palm oil-based agriculture products (+RM2.6 billion).
Expansion in imports was noted for E&E products (+RM2.7 billion) and chemical and chemical products (+RM734.7 million).
Imports by End Use recorded an increase in consumption goods, which grew RM223.9 million to RM7.0 billion and comprised 9.4% of total imports.
Nevertheless, imports of intermediate goods valued at RM39.8 billion or 53.1% share of total imports declined by 5.0% while imports of capital goods went down by 2.0% or RM169.5 million to RM8.4 billion.
“In addition, exports for the fourth quarter of 2020 (4Q20) also grew by 5.1% from RM258.2 billion in 4Q19 to RM271.5 billion. However, imports in 4Q20 shrank from RM221.4 billion in 4Q19 to RM211.6 billion, resulting in a trade surplus of RM483.0 billion (0.7%).
Malaysia’s total trade in 4Q20 rebounded by 0.7% to RM483.0 billion from a decline of 0.5% in 3Q20,” said the chief statistician.
In tandem with softer global demand and unfavourable external economic conditions due to the Covid-19, Malaysia’s total exports in 2020 contracted by 1.4% to RM981.0 billion, from the preceding year while imports declined by 6.3% to RM796.2 billion.
“Total trade in 2020 reached RM1.8 trillion, shrank by 3.6% YoY. Meanwhile, the trade surplus widened by 26.9% to RM184.8 billion, the largest trade surplus ever recorded thus far,” Mohd Uzir added.