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External Sector

  1. What is the definition of imports?
    Goods are regarded as imports when they are brought into the country either directly or into bonded warehouses, irrespective of whether such goods are for consumption, to be processed, use in manufacturing or subsequent re-exports to other countries. It is also termed as `general imports'.
  2. What is the definition of exports?
    Goods (locally produced or manufactured or imported for subsequent re-exports) are regarded as exports when they are taken out of the country. It is also termed as `general exports'.
  3. What is the definition of Re-exports?
    Goods are regarded as re-exports when they are taken out of the country in the same form as they were imported without any transformation. Re-packing, sorting or grading processes are not considered as part of the transformation process.
  4. What is the valuation of imports?
    Imports are valued on a c.i.f. (cost, insurance and freight) basis, that is, the value of the goods in the market at the statistical/customs frontier of the importing country, including all charges for transport and insurance whilst in transit but excluding the cost of unloading from the carrier unless it is borne by the carrier.
  5. What is the valuation of export?
    Exports are valued on a f.o.b. (free on board) basis, that is, the value of the goods in the market at the statistical/customs frontier of the exporting country, including all costs of transporting the goods to the statistical/customs frontier, export and other duties payable as well as the cost of loading the goods onto the carrier unless the latter cost is borne by the carrier.
  6. What is balance of trade?
    The balance of trade is the difference between the value of exports and imports. When exports exceed imports it is recorded as a surplus while a deficit is registered when imports exceed exports.
  7. What is balance of payments?
    The balance of payments covers all economic transactions between Malaysian residents and non-residents (residents of the rest of the world) in two accounts, the current account and the capital & financial account. The current account covers transactions in goods, services, income and current transfers, while the financial account record changes in the country's foreign financial assets and liabilities.
  8. What is current account?
    Current account shows the flows of goods, services, primary and secondary income between Malaysia residents and non-residents.
  9. What is capital account?
    Capital account comprises of two components namely nonproduced nonfinancial assets and capital transfers.
  10. What is Financial Account?
    Financial account measures Malaysia's net assets  and liabilities between Malaysia and rest of the world. It is classified according to the functional categories namely direct investment, portfolio investment, financial derivative, other investment and reserve assets.
  11. Where can I find the latest figures on balance of payments?
    Report on Quarterly Balance of Payments (BOP) provides quarterly estimates of BOP and its components which can be found in DOSM website and it's free download.
  12. Who are considered as residents and non-residents?
    A resident is any individual, enterprise or other organisation ordinarily domiciled in Malaysia for a period of at least one year. Branches and/or incorporated subsidiaries of foreign enterprises operating in Malaysia are regarded as residents. A non-resident is any individual, enterprise or other organisation ordinarily domiciled in a country other than Malaysia. Branches and/or subsidiaries of Malaysian companies operating abroad are regarded as non-residents.
  13. What the difference is between flows and positions data?
    Flows data refer to transactions of an economy with the rest of the world over a period of time (i.e. quarter). Positions are stock-oriented measures that provide a balance sheet statement (financial assets and liabilities) of the Malaysian economy vis-à-vis the rest of the world at a point in time (usually at the end of the year).
  14. What is Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and Direct Investment Abroad (DIA)?
    FDI refers to investment in the form of financial instruments namely equity capital, reinvested earnings and other capital (inter-company loans, trade credit, advances, etc.) by foreign direct investors in their direct investment enterprises in Malaysia. A direct investor is a foreign entity (individual or company) that owned, either directly or indirectly, at least 10 per cent of equity capital (in the form of ordinary shares or voting power) of an enterprise in Malaysia.

    Conversely, Direct Investment Abroad (DIA) refers to investment (namely: equity capital, reinvested earnings and other capital) made by Malaysian-based companies (direct investors) in their overseas affiliates where they own at least 10 per cent of equity capital.
  15. Where can I find statistics on FDI and DIA?
    Net FDI and DIA statistics are available in the Quarterly Balance of Payments Report, which can be downloaded from DOSM website. Detailed statistics on FDI & DIA by country and sector are available in Monthly Statistical Bulletin of Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), which are available in BNM website (www.bnm.gov.my). Data sources are from Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM) and BNM.
  16. What is statistics on foreign affiliate?
    Statistics on foreign affiliate presents the business activities of foreign controlled in Malaysia. Foreign affliate is defined as an enterprise in Malaysia that are controlled by country of ultimate foreign investor (the holding of equity interest is more than 50 per cent). They could be a foreign branch, subsidiaries or joint ventrures companies.