February exports up 3.4% on-month, fell 15.9% on-yr

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KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s exports in February rose 3.4% to RM39.59 billion from January on higher exports of electrical and electronic (E&E) products but it declined 15.9% on-year. The decline in exports on-year was narrower compared to a Bloomberg survey which was expecting a 23.5% decline. The Statistics Department said on April 3 that imports fell 8.4% to RM27.62 billion from January 2009. However, on a year-on-year basis, imports declined by 27.3%.The on-year decline in imports was just above the Bloomberg survey of 28%. Total trade in February was RM67.2 billion, down 21% on-year. The trade surplus was RM11.97 billion. For January to February, total trade fell to 25.2% to RM135.64 billion from the previous corresponding period. Exports fell 22.2% to RM77.86 billion while total imports contracted by 28.9% to RM57.78 billion, resulting in a trade surplus of RM20.08 billion. E&E products accounted for RM14.65 billion or 37% of total exports; liquefied natural gas (RM3.87 billion or 9.8% of total exports); palm oil (RM2.61 billion or 6.6% of total exports). Chemicals and chemical products (RM2.34 billion or 5.9% of total exports); refined petroleum products (RM1.79 billion or 4.5% of total exports); machinery, appliances and parts (RM1.58 billion or 4% of total exports). Crude petroleum (RM1.51 billion or 3.8% of total exports); manufactures of metal (RM983.5 million or 2.5% of total exports. Singapore, Japan, the US, China and Thailand were the top five export destinations, accounting for 52% of Malaysia’s total exports in February.