China-US trade surged 3.9% in first 10 months as phase one deal goes smoothly amid pandemic: experts
Published: Nov 07, 2020 11:09 PM

Trade Photo:VCG

China-US trade value surged 3.9 percent year-on-year to 3.2 trillion yuan ($480 billion) in the first 10 months, almost double the growth in the first three quarters, which experts said reflected the complementary trade structure of the world's two largest economies amid the coronavirus pandemic as well as China's commitment to implementing the phase one trade deal. 

From January to October, China's exports to the US grew 3.6 percent year-on-year to 2.48 trillion yuan and its imports from the US increased 5.2 percent to 725.65 billion yuan, Chinese customs authority said on Saturday. 

That led to an increase in China's trade surplus with the US by 3 percent to 1.75 trillion yuan. 

Such performance was better than the first three quarters when China's exports to the US rose 1.8 percent compared with last year and imports surged 2.8 percent during the period, according to official data from the Chinese customs. Trade between the two countries rose 2 percent in the first three quarters, the previous data showed. 

The expansion of bilateral trade in the first 10 months shows good complementarity between the two major economies amid the pandemic as well as the positive trend of fulfilling the commitments in the phase one trade deal at a time when the global economy is facing headwinds, Gao Lingyun, an expert at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing, told the Global Times. 

The US Trade Representative and Department of Agriculture jointly released a statement on October 23 revealing that China had purchased US-produced agricultural products worth over $23 billion, accounted for about 71 percent of the goal in the trade deal.

In addition, the outstanding performance amid the pandemic proved that a decoupling between the two countries is impossible, according to Bai Ming, deputy director of the Ministry of Commerce's International Market Research Institute. 

"Take China's soybeans imports as an example. China's purchase of soybeans from the US has created great benefits for American farmers and some agricultural states in the US when global economy remains sluggish due to COVID-19," Bai said, noting that China's imports of soybeans in the first 10 months climbed to more than 83.21 million tons, or 17.7 percent, compared with last year and US imports took a large share. 

"Despite the coronavirus, the growth of trade between China and the US in the first 10 months surpassed that during the same period last year when the two countries had trade frictions. This is a very strong demonstration of China's better-than-expected economic recovery post-COVID-19," Tian Yun, vice director of the Beijing Economic Operation Association, told the Global Times. 

Chinese exports grew at their fastest pace in 19 months in October, surging 11.4 percent year-on-year in dollar terms and imports surged 4.7 percent, data from China's customs authority also showed on Saturday.

In addition to the US, China's trade with the ASEAN countries and Europe also jumped in the past 10 months. The trade with China's largest trade partner ASEAN increased 7 percent year-on-year and that with Europe 3.5 percent.