Myanmar exports plunge by $1.2 bln as of 11 Dec amid COVID resurgence

Myanmar exports over past two months of the current financial year 2020-2021 plummeted to US$2.647 billion, reflecting a tremendous drop of $1.2 billion compared with a year-ago period of the previous FY, according to the data from the Ministry of Commerce.
During the corresponding period in the previous FY, exports stood at $3.847 billion, according to the data released by the ministry.
Both sea trade and border trade dropped amid the coronavirus impacts. The neighbouring countries tightened border security and limited the trading time to contain the spread of the virus. Moreover, the severe container shortage has become the biggest disrupter in shipping amid the coronavirus impacts, on the back of robust demand on the Asia-Europe and transpacific trade. Container shipping costs are drastically surging. Pandemic-induced container shortage pushed up the freight rates to almost triple in Myanmar, causing delays for exporters.
Of the seven export groups, agricultural exports showed an increase of $147 million against a year-ago period. Meanwhile, exports of livestock, forest products, minerals, fishery products and finished industrial goods declined.
Between 1 October and 11 December of the current FY, export values have registered at $845.63 million for agro products, $14.4 million for livestock, $184.233 million for fishery products, $233.448 million for minerals, $23.7 million for forest products, $1.257 billion for manufactured goods, and $88.574 million for other goods.
The country’s export sector relies more on the agriculture and manufacturing sectors. At present, CMP garment exports drastically dropping as the western countries cancelled order amid the COVID-19 crisis.
The Ministry of Commerce is focusing on export promotion and market diversification. Since 2011, the Ministry of Commerce has adhered to its reform policy. A series of moves to liberalize and open the economy have been introduced through policy development to improve the trade environment. — Ko Khant (Translated by Ei Myat Mon)

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