China exports fall less than expected in December

China exports fall less than expected in December

Cargo ships dock at the container terminal at the port of Lianyungang, east China’s Jiangsu Province, Dec. 7, 2022.

PHOTO | Future publications | fake images

BEIJING — China’s exports and imports fell less than expected in December, the customs administration said on Friday.

The slighter drop meant that trade was still growing throughout 2022.

China’s exports fell 9.9% in December from a year earlier in US dollar terms, slightly better than the 10% drop forecast by a Reuters poll.

China’s imports fell 7.5% year-on-year in December in US dollar terms, also better than the 9.8% drop forecast by Reuters.

Strong exports have boosted China’s economy in the past two years. But economists anticipate a slowdown in demand from the US and Europe.

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China’s exports already began to fall year-over-year in October, for the first time since May 2020, according to Wind Information.

For all of 2022, China’s exports grew 7.7% and imports 1.1%, the customs agency said.

Cross-border e-commerce between China and other countries grew 9.8 percent in 2022 from a year earlier to 2.11 trillion yuan ($301.42 billion), according to official figures. These direct exports to the consumer increased by 11.7% year-on-year.

However, that marked a slowdown from 2021, when China’s cross-border e-commerce increased 15% to 1.98 trillion yuan ($311.5 billion) and exports rose 24.5%.

China’s imports from the EU and the US fell in 2022, while those from ASEAN grew slightly.

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