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Malaysia records highest trade surplus as exports surge in October

Malaysia posted its largest trade surplus ever in October as exports surged, while imports also rebounded, government data showed on Wednesday.

Total exports in October jumped 17.7 per cent from a year earlier, beating economists’ estimates of a 6.2 per cent rise, amid strong demand from China and higher shipments of manufactured and mining goods. In September, exports had risen 6.7 per cent.

Exports to China, a major trading partner, rebounded strongly in October, rising 33 per cent year-on-year after a drop in the previous month, the International Trade and Industry Ministry said in a statement.

Shipments of manufactured goods, which account for 84 per cent of Malaysia’s total exports, were also up 19.9 per cent from a year earlier in October, the ministry’s data showed. Exports of mining goods rose 29.6 per cent, on higher prices of crude oil and liquefied natural gas.

Exports of agricultural goods, however, declined 12.3 per cent in October, hit by falling prices of palm oil and palm oil-based products. Imports in October rose 11.4 per cent year-on-year, rebounding strongly from a 2.7 per cent decline in September. Increases were seen in two categories of imports – intermediate goods and consumption goods, the data showed.

The trade surplus in October jumped to RM16.3 billion (S$5.36 billion), the largest trade surplus ever recorded, from RM15.3 billion in September, the ministry said.


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