China’s trade with SCO member states jumps 26% y-o-y in Jan-Aug, demonstrates resilience and vitality among regional economies
Published: Sep 16, 2022 02:12 PM
A China-Europe freight train loaded with raw materials of liquorice, a Chinese medicinal herb, which departed from Turkmenistan, arrived at the Xi'an international port in Shaanxi Province on August 31, 2022. (Photo: Xinhua)

A China-Europe freight train loaded with raw materials of liquorice, a Chinese medicinal herb, which departed from Turkmenistan, arrived at the Xi'an international port in Shaanxi Province on August 31, 2022. (Photo: Xinhua)

China's imports and exports with other member countries of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) came to a record high at 1.73 trillion yuan ($250 billion) from January to August, jumping by 26 percent year-on-year, data with the General Administration of Customs of China (GAC) showed on Friday, demonstrating the resilience and vitality of the economic and trade activities among the regional economies.

The "Qilu" Eurasian Express train, also dubbed the SCO Express, loaded with ceramic tiles, tires, mechanical accessories and daily necessities with a value of about 21 million yuan left the multimodal transportation center of the SCO Demonstration Zone in Qingdao, East China's Shandong Province on Friday afternoon before heading to Uzbekistan, marking the 800th train dispatched from the zone since the first train service was launched in April 2020, according to media reports.

So far, 27 international and domestic train services have been launched at the SCO demonstration zone, reaching out to 51 cities in 22 countries including the SCO member countries and countries along the Belt and Road route.

Hitchhiking on the booming market demand and needs for a deepening cooperation among the SCO member states, the eight-month trade volume witnessed significant 15.9 percentage points higher than China's overall growth rate of foreign trade in the same period, accounting for 6.3 percent of China's total foreign trade value.

Among them, exports reached 1.07 trillion yuan, an increase of 25.4 percent year-on-year, while imports were 655.01 billion yuan, an increase of 27 percent year-on-year. The energy, agricultural and machinery goods drove the trend.

With the increasing demand for energy from economic recovery and the rising importance for the stability and security of energy and agricultural supply, the increase in imports of energy products and agricultural products has become a bright spot in trade cooperation among member states, as the data read.

In the first eight months, China imported a total of 117 million tons of crude oil, coal and natural gas from other SCO member countries, with the value of 372.6 billion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 70.4 percent, accounting for 56.9 percent of the total value of China's imports from other SCO member countries.

Moreover, imported agricultural products amounted to 49.24 billion yuan during the same period, a yearly increase of 11 percent.

Despite various complex factors facing the world, China's complete supply chain and advanced production capacity have also contributed a stable force to the economic development of SCO member countries, which is reflected in the rapid growth of exports of Chinese-made mechanical and electrical products and labor-intensive products.

From January to August, China's exports of mechanical and electrical products to other member countries amounted to 563.96 billion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 19.7 percent, accounting for 52.6 percent of the total value of China's exports to other member countries.

Among them, the export of electronic components, automatic data processing equipment and its parts, and electrical equipment have all reached the 10-billion mark, and achieved double-digit growth, adding strong momentum for the overall trade growth.

Infrastructure projects have created powerful conditions for the rapid development of regional economic and trade cooperation. The China-Kyrgyzstan-Uzbekistan Highway and the China-Tajikistan-Uzbekistan Highway opened to traffic. The Blagoveshchensk-Heihe highway bridge, the first highway bridge connecting China and Russia across the Heilongjiang River, also officially opened to traffic in June. In addition, the first China-Russia railway bridge linking the city of Tongjiang in Northeast China's Heilongjiang Province with Nizhneleninskoye in Russia will launch soon. 

At the same time, the operation efficiency of China-Europe freight trains, the pillar of the cross-border transportation line has been continuously improved.

From January to August 2022, a total of 10,622 China-Europe freight trains were dispatched, a year-on-year increase of 6 percent.

In the same period, the SCO Express continued its strong development momentum, with a total of 523 trains running on the routes, a year-on-year increase of 46.1 percent.

The expansion of the train services has greatly promoted the high-quality development of the joint construction along the Belt and Road Initiative route and ensured the stability and smoothness of the global and regional industrial chain and supply chain.