Malaysia Trade Balance


Exports dip in March

In March, exports fell 4.9% in USD terms over the same month last year, which followed the 9.5% decline observed in February and was worse than market expectations. According to the Department of Statistics, the result reflected lower shipments of palm oil as well as of electrical and electronic products. As a result, in the 12 months up to March, exports decreased 1.5% over the same period last year (February: -1.1% year-on-year).

Meanwhile, imports rose 4.8% in March, which contrasted the 6.2% decline recorded in February. Accordingly, imports grew 5.1% in annual terms in the last 12 months (February: +4.9% yoy).

Finally, the trade surplus reached USD 1.6 billion in March, prompting the 12-month moving sum of the trade balance to fall to USD 26.4 billion, down from the USD 28.2 billion surplus tallied in February.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panellists expect exports to grow 5.9% in USD terms in 2013, while the trade surplus will reach USD 32.9 billion. For 2014, the panel expects exports to grow 8.5%, while the trade surplus will widen to USD 33.5 billion.


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