Expert: Prospects for China-US trade in 2nd quarter remain uncertain
The statistics for the import and export of goods have been released by China's General Administration of Customs. Imported goods have witnessed a jump and increased with a year-on-year growth of 11.7 percent in April.
In addition, other positive aspects can be seen, such as higher inputs by private companies, faster growth in trade with the Belt and Road countries, and a sizable drop in labor-intensive exports.
Ding Yifan, senior fellow of the Institute of World Development under the Development Research Center of the State Council, said the Chinese economy recovering in the manufacturing sectors and price rises have contributed to the increases mentioned above. But he also said that “the statistics only reflect the price level. If you import some valuable things but with higher prices, it will show that you import more.”
Although the trade data for April have far exceeded expectations, and domestic demand remains strong, exports continuing to maintain double-digit growth will be difficult under the circumstances of rising protectionism and many other uncertainties.
However, in terms of imports, that sector is expected to keep a relatively stable increase because of the support from China’s policy of continuous import expansion.
RMB and Dollar./ VCG Photo

RMB and Dollar./ VCG Photo

It is also worth noting that China-US trade in the first four months grew 5.9 percent, which accounts for 13.6 percent of the total value of foreign trade, but less than the overall growth.
Given current tensions between the two countries, such as sanctions imposed by the US, trade prospects in the second quarter should elicit meaningful discussion.
According to Ding, the trade situation in the following quarter will vary. “It depends on whether [the US] will really put into practice the sanction measures decided in April, but the US also gave a two-month delay. So, we have to wait until June to see whether the Trump administration wants to implement the measures.”