Saturday, October 09, 2010

Weak Malaysian Export Numbers

On Business Times:

  • Malaysia Aug export pace slows

    By Rupa Damodaran Published: 2010/10/09

    EXPORTS grew at a slower pace than market expectations, confirming views that export growth had peaked in the early part of the year

    The Ministry of International Trade and Industry (Miti) yesterday said exports had expanded 10.6 per cent to RM52.85 billion while imports had risen 16.5 per cent to RM44.53 billion.

    This resulted in a total trade of RM97.38 billion, 13.2 per cent higher from a year ago.

    Compared with July, exports in August declined 4.6 per cent while imports contracted 8.0 per cent and total trade decreased by 6.2 per cent.

    Miti said the August growth was largely due to higher exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG), electrical and electronic products, refined petroleum products, chemicals and chemical products.

    Alvin Liew of Standard Chartered Bank said the bulk of exports remain to be electronics, accounting for 40 per cent of total exports although its pace eased to 3.7 per cent in August.

    "Key commodity exports (such as refined petroleum, crude oil and palm) remain supportive of headline exports in August, although crude oil exports grew by a slower 2.7 per cent year-on-year in August, way off the near 18 per cent year-on-year pace set in both June and July," he said.

    The bright spots for Malaysia, he added, turned out to be exports to the European Union (EU) and Japan which have been recording double-digit growth since December 2009 and March 2010 respectively.

    Exports to China rose 2.4 per cent compared to a year ago. Exports to the EU grew 12.6 per cent.

    Exports to Japan edged up 28.4 per cent on higher exports of LNG, refined petroleum products and E&E products but exports to the US saw a marginal increase of 0.5 per cent compared with a year ago.

    Liew added that the decelerating export picture corroborated with StanChart's weaker manufacturing outlook for Malaysia in the second half on the back of sluggish external demand and lingering uncertainties in the external environment.

    Miti said import growth was mainly due to intermediate goods which took up 70.2 per cent of the total.

    "Resilient domestic demand and higher capital investment by companies likely drove import demand, although concerns about the external economy may have dampened import appetite for the rest of the second half," Liew said.

    Read more: Malaysia Aug export pace slows here

52.85 Billion?

And since 2009 was a washout year, I don't thi nk it's meaningful to compare to those numbers. Instead I would compare to the export numbers in 2008. How? Current numbers are rather weak, yes?

From Matrade website: