Malaysia's total trade for the January-September period increased 2.4% to RM1 trillion from RM982.2 billion in the same period last year, said Malaysia External Development Corporation (Matrade) Chairman Datuk Noraini Ahmad.
She said the increase was achieved due to trade activities with China, which was the main contributor at RM1.88 billion, followed by Asean (RM1.85 billion), Taiwan (RM766 million), Germany (RM573.8 million) and the United States (RM516 million).
"Among the main exports in September were electrical and electronics totalling RM21.76 billion or 34.4%, refined petroleum RM5.34 billion (8.4%), liquefied natural gas RM4.91 billion (7.8%), chemical and chemical products RM4.05 billion (6.4%) and palm oil RM3.96 billion (6.3%).
"China is Malaysia's biggest importing country at 15.9% followed by Singapore (11.7%), Japan (9.2%), US (8.9%) and Thailand (6.3%)," she said in a press conference after Matrade's Go Global programme here, yesterday.
She said through the Government Transformation Programme (GTP), the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) would continue to support and assist Malaysian companies to maintain and explore more new opportunities in trade as well as investment.
She said in efforts to open up further export opportunities for local companies, Matrade had also increased the number of its programmes and trade promotional activities by 12.4% this year via 136 programmes.
This was planned based on international market intelligence through Matrade offices overseas, she said.
Among the programmes organised by Matrade include participation in international trade exhibitions, specialised marketing missions, trade missions and investment as well as incoming buying missions.
Noraini said focus was also given to emerging markets such as East Europe and Central Asia including Africa by organising a special programme — Project Africa, to increase the people's awareness of the good quality of Malaysia's products and services.
She added that Matrade also organises eight Malaysia Services Exhibition in Qatar, India, Kazakhstan, Tatarstan, China, Libya, Iraq and Indonesia. - Bernama, November 13, 2013.