Malaysia's exports plunge 22.8pc in July
Malaysia's exports, the mainstay of the economy, slumped 22.8 percent in July from a year earlier, according to official data released Monday.
The trade ministry said in a statement that exports plunged to 48.87 billion ringgit (13.9 billion dollars) year-on-year while imports fell 16 percent to 41.06 billion ringgit, producing a trade surplus of 7.81 billion ringgit.
Total trade from January to July was worth 531.68 billion ringgit, a decrease of 23.9 percent from a year ago.
The trade ministry said the steep decline in exports year-on-year came as demand had declined among key trading partners, especially for electrical and electronic products which account for one-third of Malaysia's total exports.
Malaysia's key export markets are Singapore, China, Japan, Hong Kong and the United States.
In June, Malaysian exports fell 22.6 percent.
The government has said the export-dependent economy is likely to contract by 4.0-5.0 percent this year due to the drop-off in exports and manufacturing.
The central bank announced last month that the economy shrank 3.9 percent in the three months to June year-on-year, in an improved performance from the 6.2 percent contraction seen in the first quarter.