CHINA FOCUS > Foreign trade growth

Fanty Fan, editor of ChinaFastener Magazine, runs through the headlines…

Foreign trade up 4.2%in first seven months

Foreign trade containers are stacked at the Port of Lianyungang in Jiangsu province.

China’s foreign trade of goods rose 4.2% year-on-year in the first seven months of 2019 to 17.41 trillion yuan ($2.49 trillion), customs data showed on 8 August.

Exports increased 6.7% year-on-year to 9.48 trillion yuan during the period, while imports grew 1.3% to 7.93 trillion yuan, the General Administration of Customs (GAC) said.

China saw its trade surplus widen by 47.4% year-on-year to 1.55 trillion yuan during the same period.

China’s trade mix continued to optimise with general trade growing both in volume and proportion in the January-July period. General trade grew 5.7% year-on-year and accounted for 59.8 % of the total trade, 0.8 percentage points higher than the same period of last year.

The European Union remained China’s largest trading partner in the period, with bilateral trade volume up 10.8% from one year earlier to 2.72 trillion yuan, followed by the ASEAN, up 11.3% to 2.35 trillion yuan, and the United States, down 8.1% to 2.1 trillion yuan.

China’s trade with Belt and Road countries totalled 5.03 trillion yuan, up 10.2% year-on-year, six percentage points higher than the overall pace, said the GAC, adding that the amount accounted for 28.9% of China’s total trade volume.

China’s private businesses reported faster trade growth in the first seven months, with the trade volume increasing 11.8% to 7.31 trillion yuan. The amount accounted for 42% of the total trade volume in the period, up 2.9 percentage points year-on-year.

Machinery sector stable in H1

China’s machinery industry maintained steady growth in the first half (H1) of this year despite downward pressure, an industrial association said.

The industry’s revenue amounted to 10.53 trillion yuan (about 1.5 trillion US dollars) in H1, up 1.29% year-on-year, while total profits came in at 619.5 billion yuan, down 8.58% from a year earlier, according to the China Machinery Industry Federation.

The transition of growth drivers continued in the machinery industry as new energy vehicles registered fast growth in output and sales in H1, surging 48.5% and 49.6% year-on-year, respectively, the Federation noted.

China’s industrial output up 4.8% in July

China’s value-added industrial output, an important economic indicator, expanded 4.8% year-on-year in July, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said on 14 August.

The growth rate was 1.5 percentage points lower than that recorded in June, according to the NBS. On a monthly basis, industrial output edged up 0.19% from June.

In the first seven months, industrial output climbed 5.8% from one year earlier, with the pace of growth decelerating from 6% registered during the first half of the year, the NBS data showed.

Industrial output, officially called industrial value added, is used to measure the activity of designated large enterprises with annual turnover of at least 20 million yuan (about $2.8 million).

A breakdown of the data showed the production and supply of electricity, thermal power, gas and water reported a year-on-year growth of 6.9% in July, the fastest among the three major sectors and accelerating 0.3 percentage points from June.

Manufacturing output rose 4.5% year-on-year, down from 6.2% in June, and output growth of the mining sector eased to 6.6% from 7.3% in June.

High-tech manufacturing maintained fast expansion, with its output increasing 6.6% last month.

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These articles first appeared in Torque's September Magazine. Read the whole mag, for free, here. Or apply for a free subscription here.