China: surprise acceleration of imports from China
Chinese imports grew by more than 13% in September, their fastest pace since December 2019, before the start of the pandemic. At the same time, exports registered their fourth month of increase and increased by 9.9%.
While in many countries, including France, the rebound in activity seems to be showing signs of slowing down or at least stabilizing, in China foreign trade is doing quite well. And in September both imports and exports posted strong increases.
According to data released Tuesday morning by Chinese customs, exports rose 9.9% last month while imports posted a surprise increase of more than 13%.
Unexpected increase in imports
While Chinese exports, which recorded their fourth consecutive monthly increase, rose only slightly compared to the previous month (9.9% after 9.5% in August), the real surprise came from imports. Not only are they progressing for the first time since June, but with a jump of 13.2% they even record their strongest increase since December 2019. That is to say before the official appearance of the pandemic.
In detail, this unexpected dynamism seems largely driven by purchases of agricultural products and also of goods linked to new technologies.
Agricultural and technology-related purchases
While the recent floods and torrential rains that hit the country have damaged large areas of agricultural land, meat purchases soared 40.5% while those of cereals increased by 35% and those of soybeans. by 17.6%.
At the same time, and while tensions remain between Washington and Beijing, and in fear of further US sanctions, purchases of iron ore and electronic integrated circuits have also reached record levels.
The surplus with the United States remains high
A trend which is reflected in the bilateral trade balance with Washington: imports from the United States increased by 24% while sales from Beijing were up 20.4%.
And if at 30.75 billion dollars, China’s trade surplus with the United States, which is still a subject of friction with President Donald Trump, is still increasing at an annual rate (+ 18%), it is nevertheless down compared to 34.24 billion in August.