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China's solid trade data indicate resilience to headwinds: UK think tank

Xinhua | Updated: 2021-09-08 22:09

Cargos are unloaded from a container ship at the container terminal of the Lianyungang Port in East China's Jiangsu province, on Jan 14, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]

LONDON -- China's exports and imports momentum have both picked up in August despite the global spread of the Delta variant and supply disruptions, British think tank Oxford Economics has said.

"Exports surprised on the upside in August, with momentum picking up despite the global spread of the Delta variant as well as port congestion and supply bottlenecks in China," said the think tank in a report released Tuesday.

"We think exports will continue to support growth later this year," said the think tank, but adding that "the near-term outlook warrants caution amid external headwinds."

Apart from the exports, the Oxford Economics said China's sequential import momentum also improved in August.

"We expect import momentum to stay relatively robust amid a pick-up in domestic demand from September onwards, given that COVID-related restrictions have now been largely lifted," said the report.

The report came as China's latest official data showed that the country's imports and exports in August rose by 18.9 percent year on year to 3.43 trillion yuan ($530 billion), representing a yearly increase in China's foreign trade for 15 consecutive months.

In the first eight months of the year, the country's total imports and exports expanded 23.7 percent year on year to 24.78 trillion yuan ($3.84 trillion), data from China's General Administration of Customs showed Tuesday.

The figure marked a 22.8-percent increase compared with the level registered during the same period in 2019, according to customs data.

"While near-term headwinds remain, supply constraints in China have eased and we think the global economic recovery will continue to underpin China's exports later this year and in 2022," said the British think tank.

As to the domestic momentum, the report said China's "corporate investment will continue to be supported by better profitability as well as policy support given to SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises), advanced manufacturing (such as robotics), and strategic industries (such as semiconductors and new energy)."

"We also think that infrastructure investment growth will gain pace in Q4 (the fourth quarter) and into 2022 as we expect local government special bonds issuance to pick up in the coming months," added the report.

According to the official data, China's trade with its top three trading partners -- the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the European Union, and the United States -- maintained sound growth in the first eight months of the year.

China's trade with countries along the Belt and Road grew by 24.6 percent to 7.29 trillion yuan ($1.13 trillion) during the same period, the data showed.

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