Oct export growth seen slower
Author: Rupa Damodaran
KUALA LUMPUR: MALAYSIAN exports, which have remained on a steady growth path despite a slowing global demand, is likely to grow at a slow pace in October, said economists. Base effect is one of the reasons for the pace but economists were however cheered by the support by commodity prices, which would be a boost to the total export receipts. According to a Business Times poll, exports are expected to post a 8.07 per cent average growth rate and imports 5.19 per cent while trade balance is expected to average RM8.97 billion. The International Trade and Industry Ministry will release the data today. OCBC Bank's Gundy Cahyadi said the 16.6 per growth, seen in September, was just temporary, adding that the slowdown in global growth momentum is likely to weigh on the export growth prospects. Some moderation is already seen in the commodity shipments in the recent months. According to Citi, the electrical and electronics (E&E) sector, which contributes the bulk of manufacturing exports from Malaysia, could continue to stabilise, in line with some regional peers. The 20.8 per cent year-on-year surge in Japan's imports from Malaysia in ringgit terms and the 12.6 per cent surge in Singapore's imports from Malaysia are likely to offset the moderation in China's imports from Malaysia (13.7 per cent) in October. However, Citi is convinced that palm oil exports will surge as the Palm Oil Registration and Licensing Authority's October data showed the combined value of palm oil and palm kernel oil exports nearly doubled to 46.7 per cent year-on-year. Standard Chartered Bank also expects commodities to continue to do much of the heavy lifting in terms of driving export growth as manufactured goods exports remain sluggish. Economist Tai Hui expects the positive commodity price effect to fade towards year-end. Crude palm oil (CPO) prices fell 9.6 per cent year-on-year in November, compared with a 40 per...
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