KUALA LUMPUR, June 4, 2009 (AFP) – Malaysia’s April exports dropped 26.3 percent year on year, according to official data released Thursday.
The trade ministry said in a statement that exports fell to 41.12 billion ringgit (11.7 billion dollars) from a year ago while imports plunged 22.4 percent year on year in April to 33.76 billion ringgit.
The total trade was worth 74.88 billion ringgit, a decrease of 24.6 percent from a year ago, but Malaysia did manage to record a trade surplus of 7.36 billion ringgit for the month.
“The decline in exports for April 2009 was largely attributed to lower exports of liquefied natural gas, crude and refined petroleum products,” it said.
During the period January to April, total trade amounted to 284.96 billion ringgit, a decline of 24.2 percent from the previous period last year.
Singapore, China, US, Japan and Thailand were the top five export destinations, accounting for 52.4 percent of exports for April.
In April Malaysia’s exports to China shrank 9.4 percent to 5.11 billion ringgit compared with a year ago, due to lower exports of palm oil and rubber.
Exports to the US during the same period plunged 38.2 percent, due to lower exports of electrical and electronic products,
The ministry said exports to the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations contracted 26.4 percent in April due to lower exports of petroleum products and electrical and electronic products.
Malaysia’s economy was likely to contract by 4.0-5.0 percent this year due to a steep decline in exports and manufacturing, Prime Minister Najib Razak said last week.
“We are in a technical recession because of two quarters of negative growth,” Najib said after the release of data showing the economy shrank by 6.2 percent in the three months to March.
Source : AFP