KUALA LUMPUR: More Australian companies are choosing Malaysia as their preferred export destination compared with other key players in South-East Asia and neighbouring regions, says Malaysia Australia Business Council (MABC).
In a statement, MABC said the latest data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed that in 2013-2014, a total of 3,801 Australian companies exported their goods and services to Malaysia compared with 3,659 companies in 2012-2013.
"This is an annual growth of almost 150 companies," the council said.
MABC said Thailand saw exports from 2,851 Australian firms in 2012-2013, down 40 companies versus 2,811 companies in 2013-2014.
"Indonesia, India and Japan also experienced a decline in numbers, recording 2,421 companies, 1,865 companies and 3,016 companies, respectively," it said.
Singapore, one of Australia's largest trading partners, experienced lower growth than Malaysia, with only an extra 48 companies exporting in 2013-2014.
MABC chairman Leigh Howard said the figures were a testament to the openness of both economies and the enduring strength of the trade relationship over decades.
He cited the Malaysia Australia Free Trade Agreement as a contributing factor, which has resulted in tangible benefits for businesses in both countries.
Malaysia has 2,600 local companies exporting to Australia, he said. - Bernama