Myanmar’s external trade between 1 and 9 October in the current financial year 2020-2021 touched a low of US$473.89 million, a sharp drop of $473 million compared with the corresponding period of the FY2019-2020, according to the Ministry of Commerce. During the same period in the previous FY, trade stood at $947 million, according to data released by the ministry. The decrease in Myanmar’s foreign trade was attributed to the drop in exports and imports in the first nine days of the current FY amid the COVID-19 crisis. Myanmar exports agricultural products, animal products, minerals, forest products, and finished industrial goods, while it imports capital goods, raw industrial materials, and consumer goods.
The country’s export sector relies more on the agricultural and manufacturing sectors. The government is trying to reduce the trade deficit by screening luxury import items and boosting exports. Myanmar external trade between FY2016-2017 and FY2019-2020 (as of 21 August) under the incumbent government period touched a high of US$149.67 billion, comprising exports worth $68.53 billion and imports valued $81.1 billion, according to the statistics released by the Ministry of Commerce. Myanmar foreign trade has shown a 10-per cent increase, year over year, under the incumbent government. Myanmar has already surpassed the total trade value target of $34 billion for the last FY, said an official from the ministry.
The Ministry of Commerce is endeavouring to boost export, enhance value-added production, reduce export barriers and provide trade financing services. Myanmar’s top export countries are China, Thailand, Japan, Singapore, the US, India, Germany, the Republic of Korea, Spain and the UK. In contrast, it primarily imports from China, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, India, Viet Nam, Japan, the Republic of Korea and the US, as per data of the Ministry of Commerce. The Ministry of Commerce is endeavouring to boost export, enhance value-added production, reduce export barriers and provide trade financing services. Under the National Planning Law for the Financial Year 2020-2021, Myanmar intends to reach an export target at US$16 billion and import at $18 billion. —Ko Htet (Translated by Ei Myat Mon)