Malaysia’s services exports reached an all-time high by recording RM169.8 billion in 2019, boosted by favourable performance in travel, air transport and professional services. Meanwhile, imports increased marginally from RM179.9 billion to RM180.7 billion in 2019 led by the outbound activities and other business services. The exceptional performance of exports and lower imports of construction activities have contributed to a narrower trade deficit in services to RM10.9 billion as against RM17.5 billion in 2018, the lowest since 2015. Malaysia’s total trade in services increased to RM350.5 billion, grew by 2.4 per cent as against RM342.3 billion in 2018. Total trade in services made up 23.2 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP at current prices) for 2019.
Travel remained as the largest component by contributing almost half of total exports with 48.4 per cent share. This was backed by encouraging tourist expenditure mainly in shopping, accommodation and; food and beverages. Exports of transport recorded a growth of 5.6 per cent, largely led by the increase in air and sea transports. The increased in exports of other business services contributed by higher exports in business management & consulting; architectural, engineering and technical services and accounting services. Meanwhile, the imports of construction services dropped tremendously at 52.0 per cent to RM5.6 billion from RM11.6 billion in the previous year. This was due to slowdown in construction activities following to the completion of mega projects related to oil and gas; and civil engineering as well as the absence of new mega projects; caused a substantial drop in imported of construction materials and services from abroad.
Singapore remained as the main destination for Malaysia’s exports by registering RM41.5 billion in 2019. The leading markets for travel were Singapore, China and Indonesia, while exports on manufacturing services was mainly to USA. As for India, the exports were predominantly on transport activities. In 2019, the imports from Singapore, China and Thailand were mostly on travel while USA and United Kingdom were primarily for business services.
DATO' SRI DR. MOHD UZIR MAHIDIN
CHIEF STATISTICIAN MALAYSIA
DEPARTMENT OF STATISTICS, MALAYSIA
5 June 2020
Mohd Yusrizal Ab Razak
Public Relation Officer
Strategic Communication and International Division
Department of Statistics, Malaysia
Tel : +603-8885 7942
Fax : +603-8888 9248
Email : yusrizal.razak[at]dosm.gov.my