Malaysia Trade January 2017


Malaysia: Export growth surges to an over four-year high in January

March 3, 2017

Exports in USD terms grew a robust 12.0% annually in January, which followed December’s 6.7% expansion and marked the fastest expansion since February 2012. Similarly, year-on-year exports to Malaysia’s top three trading partners—China, Singapore and the European Union—were strong in January and recorded double-digit increases.

According to the National Statistical Institute, January’s expansion was broad-based as it reflected increases in exports of electronic products, natural rubber, palm oil and palm-based products and crude oil, among other categories. Imports also increased in January, growing at the fastest pace in four years (+14.4% year-on-year).

The trade balance narrowed from a USD 2.1 billion surplus in December to a USD 1.0 billion surplus in January. The 12-month moving sum of the trade surplus was stable at December’s USD 21.0 billion in January—the lowest figure since June 2004.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect exports to grow 2.3% in USD terms in 2017. Imports are expected to decline 3.9% in 2017, pushing the trade surplus to USD 23.3 billion. For 2018, the panel expects exports to grow 4.3%. With imports expected to rise 4.6% in 2018, panelists see the trade surplus rising to USD 23.5 billion.

Author:, Economist

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Malaysia Trade Chart

Malaysia Trade12m January 2017 0

Note: 12-month trade balance in USD billion and annual variation of the 12-month sum of exports and imports.
Source: Department of Statistics Malaysia (DSM) and FocusEconomics calculations.

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