Year-on-year, exports unexpectedly fell 0.6 percent to MYR 63.6 billion in January, due to a decline in shipments of: refined petroleum products (-41.8 percent to MYR 3.4 billion and accounting for about 5.4 percent of total shipments); palm oil and palm-based products (-15.3 percent to MYR 4.6 billion, 7.2 percent share); natural rubber (-31.2 percent to MYR 377.0 million, 0.6 percent) and liquefied natural gas (-0.1 percent to MYR 6.2 billion, 9.7 percent). In contrast, exports rose for: electrical and electronic (+6.0 percent to MYR 21.8 billion, 34.2 percent of total shipments); timber and timber-based products (+8.1 percent to MYR 1.8 billion, 2.9 percent) and crude petroleum (+2.4 percent to MYR 2.7 billion, 4.3 percent).
By country, exports to China dropped the most by MYR 1.9 billion, followed by Indonesia (-MYR 582.9 million), Australia (-MYR 445.3 million), New Zealand (MYR 415.2 million) and Republic of Korea (MYR 317.2 million).
Imports declined by 5.3 percent to MYR 54.6 billion, mainly due to a decrease in purchases of intermediate goods (-3.0 percent to MYR 33.1 billion, representing 60.6 percent of total imports. In contrast, purchases increased for: capital goods (+ 2.1 percent to MYR 8.1 billion, 14.9 percent) and consumption goods (+2.0 percent to MYR 4.4 billion, 8.0 percent).
By country, imports from Singapore fell the most by MYR 1.8 billion followed by the United Arab Emirates (-MYR 1.5 billion), Brunei Darussalam (-MYR 545.9 million), Costa Rica (-MYR 443.4 million) and Russia (-MYR 356.6 million).
In December 2014, Malaysia posted a MYR 9.2 billion trade surplus, following a MYR 11.13 billion surplus in November.