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Country Briefs


Reference Date: 19-December-2017


  1. Main 2018 season started with localized floods, but final outcome will depend on weather conditions over next months

  2. Cereal imports forecast to increase in 2017/18 marketing year (July/June)

Main 2018 season started with localized floods, but final outcome will depend on weather conditions over next months

Planting of the 2018 main season paddy crop is completed in Sabah and Sarawak states, while it is still ongoing in the main paddy-producing areas of Peninsular Malaysia.

Heavy rains and recurrent localized floods in September and November affected some areas of the country’s main paddy-producing provinces. Although a detailed assessment of the crop damage is not yet available, paddy crops in the low-lying areas have been affected. However, ample scope exists for the damaged areas to be compensated through replanting as the main season sowing period continues until the end of December. In addition, some of the damages could be compensated with a greater 2017/18 secondary season, which will be planted from March next year. The final output for 2017 will depend on prevailing weather conditions during the next months. According to the latest seasonal forecast from the International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI), there is an increased probability of above average rains over Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and northerneastern parts of Sarawak.

Cereal imports expected to increase in 2017/18 marketing year (July/June)

The country is largely dependent on imports to satisfy its domestic consumption requirements for wheat, maize, and in a lesser extent, rice, as local cereal production meets only about half of the total national cereal demand. In 2017/18 marketing year (July/June), total cereal imports are forecast at 6.1 million tonnes, 4 percent above the 2016/17 high level. Maize imports in the 2017/18 marketing year are projected to exceed last year’s high level and reach 3.7 million tonnes, supported by strong domestic demand from the feed industry. Wheat imports in 2017/18 are anticipated to increase by 6 percent year-on-year to 1.6 million tonnes, reflecting strong demand for high quality wheat flour for bread and bakery products. Rice imports in calendar year 2018 are forecast at 950 000 tonnes.

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