China foreign trade drops as pandemic drags outlook

By: |
April 14, 2020 12:25 PM

Exports fell 6.6 percent in March from a year earlier and imports dropped 0.9 percent, according to Customs data released Tuesday.

china foreign trade, pandemic drugs, coronavirus outbreak, china trading, china export sector, global COVID-19 ,latest news on coronavirus“The worst is still to come for China’s export sector,” warned Julian Evans-Pritchard of Capital Economics. (Reuters photo)

China’s foreign trade fell again in March even as businesses returned to work after the coronavirus outbreak, with the global pandemic weighing on the manufacturing powerhouse’s outlook. Exports fell 6.6 percent in March from a year earlier and imports dropped 0.9 percent, according to Customs data released Tuesday.

The contraction was less than a Bloomberg economist forecast that predicted a 10 percent or more decline in both figures, and well below the 17.2 plunge in exports seen in the first two months of the year. But analysts warned that a broader recovery would be hamstrung for as long as the viral pandemic ravaged China’s trading partners.

“The worst is still to come for China’s export sector,” warned Julian Evans-Pritchard of Capital Economics. China’s trade surplus with the United States — a key point of contention in the bruising trade war between the world’s top two economies — narrowed again in March by 25.3 percent on-year to $15.3 billion.

January’s phase one trade deal between Washington and Beijing had seen “good growth momentum” in some commodities imports from the US such as soybeans and pork, said Customs official Li Kuiwen. But Li also sounded a sombre note on foreign trade forecasts for the rest of the year.

“We have noted that the global COVID-19 spread is still accelerating, causing a serious impact on the world’s economic development,” he told reporters on Tuesday. “Shrinking demand in the international market will inevitably deal a blow to China’s exports,” he said.

Do you know What is Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR), Finance Bill, Fiscal Policy in India, Expenditure Budget, Customs Duty? FE Knowledge Desk explains each of these and more in detail at Financial Express Explained. Also get Live BSE/NSE Stock Prices, latest NAV of Mutual Funds, Best equity funds, Top Gainers, Top Losers on Financial Express. Don’t forget to try our free Income Tax Calculator tool.

Financial Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel and stay updated with the latest Biz news and updates.

Next Stories
1Supplementary demand: Will not renege on pledges to states, says FM Nirmala Sitharaman
2GDP: No outlook for medium term, but Centre vows to spend
3Rules of origin: Stricter regime soon to screen FTA benefits