Myanmar trade gap has significantly surged to US$1.54 billion as of 21 August in the current financial year 2019-2020 from over $1 billion registered in the corresponding period of the 2018-2019FY, according to the data provided by the Ministry of Commerce. Between 1 October and 21 August in the current FY, Myanmar’s external trade increased to over $33 billion from $31.2 billion recorded in the year-ago period. While exports were estimated at $15.7 billion, imports were valued at $17.27 billion. Compared to the previous FY, exports showed an increase of $637.69 million, while imports climbed up by $1.165 billion. Myanmar’s foreign trade has shown a 10-per-cent increase, year over year, under the incumbent government.
Myanmar exports agricultural products, animal products, minerals, forest products, and finished industrial goods, while it imports capital goods, intermediate goods, CMP raw materials, and consumer goods. The country’s export sector relies more on the agricultural and manufacturing sectors. While export earnings from the CMP (cut, make, and pack) garment businesses are rising, the country’s reliance on natural resources, such as natural gas and jade, is lessening.
The government is trying to cut the trade deficit by screening luxury import items and boosting exports. Myanmar trade deficit was pegged at $1.14 billion in the 2018-2019FY, $1.3 billion in the previous mini-budget period (April-September, 2018), $3.9 billion in the 2017-2018FY, $5.3 billion in the 2016-2017FY, and $5.4 billion in the 2015-2016FY, according to statistics released by the Central Statistical Organization. —Mon Mon (Translated by Ei Myat Mon)