KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s exports in June grew 10 percent from a year earlier, government data showed on Friday, well below expectations, as shipments of manufactured goods fell. Export growth missed the 15.8 percent forecast by a Reuters poll and was sharply down from May’s 32.5 percent growth. Exports of metal products and tech equipment fell 13.3 percent and 7.0 percent respectively in June, data from the International Trade and Industry Ministry showed, despite a rise in shipments of electrical and electronic products.
Exports of mining goods grew 40.3 percent, driven by rising prices and shipment volumes of liquefied natural gas, the data showed. June’s import growth fell sharply to 3.7 percent from a year earlier, down from the 30.4 percent growth in May and the 19 percent growth projected in the poll. Imports of intermediate and capital goods rose but consumption goods, which totalled 5.62 billion ringgit or 8.9 percent of total imports, declined by 5.2 percent. This was due to lower imports of semi-durables, particularly woven apparel. The trade surplus in June widened to 9.9 billion ringgit ($2.32 billion) from May’s 5.5 billion ringgit.
Malaysia reports trade data in ringgit. The currency has been one of Asia’s best-performing ones this year, strengthening about 3 percent in the second quarter. Exports to China remained robust, rising 27.3 percent from a year earlier, while those to the European Union grew 10 percent. Shipments to the United States rose 1.8 percent, slowing from the previous month on lower exports of manufactured goods.