China’s foreign trade has entered a new normal state

On the afternoon of July 13, the State Council held a press conference on the import and export situation in 2016. According to Huang Yuping, a spokesperson for the General Administration of Customs, China’s imports and exports rebounded in the second quarter, and the total value of imports and exports in the first half of the year still showed negative growth. Under the downward pressure, foreign trade still presents many bright spots, and the performance of private enterprises is even more unique.

According to customs statistics, in the first half of this year, the total import and export value of China’s goods trade was 11.13 trillion yuan, down 3.3% over the same period last year. Among them, exports were 6.4 trillion yuan, down 2.1%; imports were 4.73 trillion yuan, down 4.7%; trade surplus was 1.67 trillion yuan, up 5.9%.

In the quarter, the import, export, export and import values ​​fell by 6.9%, 5.7% and 8.4% respectively in the first quarter. Compared with the second quarter, the import and export and export value increased by 0.1% and 1.2% respectively, showing a positive growth; the import value decreased by 1.2%, and the decline was 7.2 percentage points lower than the first quarter.

Looking into the future, China’s import and export will face downward pressure for a long time or become one of the new normals of foreign trade. Huang Yuping also said that China’s exports will face greater downward pressure in the third quarter, and the trade in goods may improve in the second half of the year. However, some analysts believe that the negative growth of foreign trade in the future is a normal state.

From the import and export situation disclosed in the first half of the conference, we can see some new normals in China’s foreign trade: on the one hand, the new normal of the internal economy, and on the other hand, the new dynamics of the international environment.

Internally, on the one hand, China’s economy has entered a new normal of medium and high-speed growth, facing the downward pressure and the lack of aggregate demand, and the demand for imports is slightly weak; on the other hand, China’s economic transformation and upgrading, import demand The structure will inevitably be adjusted, and the requirements for imports are higher, and it is no longer the source. Therefore, in the past six months, the total value of China’s imports has shown sustained negative growth in the quarter. Moreover, the comprehensive cost of Chinese enterprises has risen rapidly, resulting in the gradual weakening of traditional competitive advantages. For example, the import and export of processing trade has dropped by 9.8%, which has dragged down the overall import and export of China by about 3 percentage points.

From the outside, there are also some notable new developments: insufficient external demand, especially the slow recovery of the European and American economies, which has made China’s exports to the traditional trading partners such as the EU, the US and ASEAN unsatisfactory. In the first half of this year, China’s exports to the EU increased by 1.3%, exports to the United States fell by 4.6%, and exports to ASEAN fell by 2.9%. According to a recent survey of more than 2,600 foreign trade companies by the General Administration of Customs, 67.6% of enterprises reflect insufficient demand in the international market, which is the main dilemma facing the current import and export of enterprises. On the other hand, with the international division of labor, the adjustment of international exchange rates, and changes in international trade rules and global governance rules, the environment facing China’s foreign trade is more complicated and full of uncertainty.

Fortunately, in addition to the pressure from the data, China’s foreign trade has shown several bright highlights: for example, the proportion of general trade import and export has increased; exports to some countries along the “Belt and Road”; iron ore Imports of bulk commodities such as crude oil and copper continued to grow, and the decline in prices of major imported commodities narrowed compared with the first quarter.

Under the overall weak foreign trade situation, the performance of private enterprises is very eye-catching, and it can be described as unique. Data show that in the first half of the year, China’s private enterprises import and export 4.31 trillion yuan, an increase of 5.1%, accounting for 38.7% of my total foreign trade. Among them, exports were 2.99 trillion yuan, an increase of 3.6%, accounting for 46.6% of the total export value, exceeding the proportion of foreign-invested enterprises and state-owned enterprises, and continued to maintain the export share; the import of private enterprises increased by 8.7%, continuing the fourth quarter of last year. Growth situation. In the same period, the import and export of foreign-invested enterprises and state-owned enterprises decreased by 6.5% and 13% respectively. In contrast, the contribution and advantages of private enterprises in the growth of foreign trade can be seen at a glance.

In short, whether it is from the internal or external environment, China’s imports and exports will still face a severe situation. To improve the current status of foreign trade, we must resolutely implement various policies and measures to stabilize foreign trade growth; China should actively participate in the global industrial division of labor, participate in global value chains in an all-round way, and continuously improve the status of China’s industries and enterprises in the value chain; In addition, we will stabilize the RMB exchange rate expectation and continue to promote the “Belt and Road” strategy to maintain the growth of imports and exports to countries along the route.