Market trend in medicinal plants

To provide an overview of the market trend in medicinal plant trade in Malaysia, data on the import and export of such related raw materials from 1970 to 2006 (time series of 37 years) have been collected and compiled. The data have been analyzed according to decade (1970s, 1980s, 1990s and the last six years in the millennium era) to determine whether there is a significant difference in terms of market trends and also comparative advantages in the trade.

Figure 2 and Table 18 below show the summary of market trends in the trade in medicinal plants in Malaysia for the last 36-year period. It is noted that the market trends are quite similar for the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s as well as the millennium years (2000 to 2006). Imports always exceed the exports throughout the years starting with a very low movement in the 1970s, moderate patterns in the 1980s and significant increases in the 1990s before continuing to the millennium years (2000 and 2006). The import value of medicinal plants ranged from RM 21.2 million to RM 90.2 million with an average of RM 46.4 million in the 1970s. The value is higher in the 1980s ranging from RM 98.7 million to RM 237.6 million with an average import value of RM 158 million. The 1990s show increasing values of imports ranging from RM 249.6 million to RM 626.7 with an average value of RM 376.7 million. From 2000 to 2006, the import value ranged from RM 575.3 million to RM 846.5 million or an average value of RM 698.3 million annually.

The value of exports is quite small compared to import values. The export value of medicinal plants in the 1970s ranged from RM 3.7 million to RM 10.2 million or an average of RM 6.7 million per year. The value is consistent in the 1980s ranging from RM 5.9 million to RM 22.8 million with an average value of RM 14.3 million per year. Malaysian exports of raw materials and aromatic plants are maintained in the range of RM 18.7 million to RM 83.2 million with an average of RM 41.1 million per year in the 1990s. From 2000 to 2006, the export values ranged from RM 62.5 million to RM 92.2 million with an average value of RM 78.3 million per year (Table 18).

Figure 2. Summary of Malaysian trade in medicinal plants (1970 – 2006)

CTN00694_2_20071207113508

Source: Department of Statistics

Table 18 : Import and export values of medicinal plants

Import values (RM million)

Export values (RM million)

Decades

Min

Max

Average

Min

Max

Average

1970s

21.2

90.2

46.4

3.7

10.2

6.7

1980s

98.7

237.6

158

5.9

22.8

14.3

1990s

249.6

626.7

376.7

18.7

83.2

41.1

2000 - 2006

575.3

846.5

698.3

62.5

92.2

78.3

Source: Department of Statistics