Chinese November exports up 21.1%, boosted by medical supplies, holiday merchandise

Source: Global Times Published: 2020/12/7 11:08:37

China’s foreign trade in November 2020. Infographic: GT

Chinese exports surged 21.1 percent in November, higher than expected and continuing a strong recovery trend since the summer, as importers in Western countries stock up for the year-end holiday season. 

Total foreign trade amounted to $460.72 billion in US dollar terms year-on-year in November, an increase of 13.6 percent, with exports surging 21.1 percent and imports up by 4.5 percent, data from China's customs authority showed on Monday. The November trade surplus reached $75.42 billion, an increase of 102.9 percent.

Chinese analysts point to better-than-expected economic recovery by China’s major trading partners and its status as the world’s factory for holiday and medical goods amid a lingering second wave of COVID-19 pandemic. 

The November 21.1 percent jump in exports was also higher than October’s reading, when exports surged 11.4 percent year-on-year. 

From January to November, China's trade value grew 0.6 percent year-on-year to $4.17 trillion, the General Administration of Customs said, extending the upward trend of the first 10 months. Trade grew 1.1 percent in the first 10 months.

Trade with all major trade partners, including ASEAN, EU, US, Japan and South Korea all increased.

Exports of textiles, including masks, reached 989.23 billion yuan, an increase of 33 percent.

“The November foreign trade figures are in line with a continued rebounding trend seen since summer, as China's major trading partners, from Asian countries and the EU to the US have posted better-than-expected readings in economic growth,” Chen Fengying, a research fellow at the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, told the Global Times on Monday.

The resurgence of COVID-19 pandemic also means more exports of medical supplies, a major driver for exports growth, remained strong, Chen said.  

The November reading is also boosted by year-end holiday spending in Western countries, with the approach of the Christmas and New Year holidays. 

In November many traders in China complained about an acute shortage of ship containers as exports orders soared, and sea freight rates reached record levels as a result. 

For imports, China continues to see a rebound in demand for raw materials even if domestic consumption has not fully recovered from the impact of the pandemic.  

Investment has pretty much recovered, Chen said, noting that as investment caught up, the demand of raw materials climbed. 

China has seen a rebound in iron ore prices and global crude prices have been regaining ground as countries around the world stage a recovery.

Prices of iron ore imports have been surging recently, far exceeding the expectations of Chinese steel makers, said Luo Tiejun, deputy head of industry body China Iron & Steel Association.

On December 4, Platts Iron Ore Index, a global index for the steelmaking ingredient, saw a year-to-date increase of 150 percent, the Xinhua News Agency reported on Sunday.

Global Times

Posted in: ECONOMY

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