07/02/2014 09:51 AST

Malaysia's exports grew more than expected in December, figures from the Department of Statistics revealed Friday.

Exports grew 14.4 percent in December from last year, when economists expected 10 percent rise. This was the sixth consecutive growth in exports since July 2013. Likewise, imports rose 14.8 percent annually, faster than the expected 8.2 percent increase.

Consequently, the trade surplus totaled MYR 9.47 billion compared to expectations of MYR 9.56 billion.

With this recovery, Malaysia's exports for the full year 2013 advanced 2.4 percent to MYR 719.81 billion.

At the same time, higher manufacturing activities as well as capital formation through growing investments, accompanied by higher domestic consumption, caused imports to rise 7 percent to MYR 649.19 billion.

Despite imports outpacing exports, Malaysia still enjoyed a positive trade balance, the statistical office said. A trade surplus of MYR 70.63 billion was recorded in 2013, which was the 16th consecutive year of trade surplus.

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