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Border trade during Oct-Dec quarter down

BORDER trade between Myanmar and its neighbours during the October-December quarter amounted to more than US$2 billion, down by $71 million, or 3.2 percent from the same period in 2017, according to the Ministry of Commerce.

The fall was mainly due to a $563 million drop in trade value at the China-Myanmar border to just $1.2 billion during the quarter compared to the previous corresponding period. This, in turn, was caused by the suspension of exports and tighter security at the border and the closure of the Kyin San Kyawt gate near Muse for several weeks over Christmas and the new year.

As a whole, border exports touched $1.5 billion during the quarter, down $700 million from $2.2 billion in the previous corresponding quarter, while imports increase to $712 million from $676 million over the same periods, according to official data.

China is Myanmar’s largest border trade partner. Myanmar exports rice, sugar, pulses, sesame seeds, corn, fishery products, minerals and animal products to China and imports agricultural machinery, electrical appliances, iron and steel-related materials, raw industrial goods and consumer goods.

Myanmar also conducts border trade with neighbouring Thailand, Bangladesh and India.

Around 20pc of Myanmar’s total trade is conducted via the border.

The remaining 80pc is conducted by sea. During the Oct-Dec quarter, the country shipped goods worth nearly $6 billion overseas, which represents an increase of $443 million compared to the previous corresponding quarter.

From October 1 to December 28, maritime exports totaled $2.1 billion while imports stood at $3.8 billion, according to the Ministry of Commerce.

SOURCE: MYANMAR TIMES

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