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G20 international merchandise trade continues to fall in Q2.

G20 international merchandise trade, seasonally adjusted and expressed in current US dollars, continued its downward trend in the second quarter of 2019, with exports contracting by 1.9 per cent and imports by 0.9 per cent.

Exports contracted by 5.3 per cent in China (to their lowest level since Q4 2017) and by 1.1 per cent in the US (their lowest level since Q1 2018), said a statement.

Imports rose marginally in both countries, (by 0.6 per cent in China and 0.3 per cent in the US), on the back of a pick-up in US-China bilateral trade, possibly reflecting stockpiling in anticipation of US tariff measures that became effective on May 10 and Chinese retaliatory measures (implemented on June 1), it said.

US exports to, and imports from, China increased by 2.7 per cent and 0.2 per cent respectively in the second quarter of 2019 (but remain significantly below the highs seen in Q3 2018, by 17.4 per cent for exports and 10.7 per cent for imports).

In the European Union, exports and imports contracted by 1.7 per cent and 2.3 per cent respectively.

France's exports fell by 0.3 per cent and imports by 0.7 per cent while Germany's exports fell by 3.0 per cent and imports by 1.7 per cent.

Italy's imports fell by 0.6 per cent (the fifth consecutive quarterly fall), though its exports saw a modest increase of 0.1 per cent. Amid continuing Brexit uncertainty, the UK saw significant contractions in both exports (minus 7.1 per cent) and imports (minus 12.6 per cent).

Russia's exports fell by 7.4 per cent, despite higher crude oil prices. Saudi Arabia's exports also fell significantly by 3.5 per cent with imports contracting by 11.5 per cent.

In Korea, exports fell by 1.6 per cent, the third straight quarterly decrease, and are now 12.3 per cent below the recent high recorded in Q3 2018.

In Argentina, imports contracted by 6.4 per cent, to levels one-third below recent highs, as the Argentine peso depreciated by 12.5 per cent against the US dollar (86.7 per cent over the last 4 quarters). Turkey's imports also fell significantly (by 6.4 per cent), as the Turkish lira continued to depreciate (by 9.5 per cent against the US dollar in the second quarter of 2019).

Only a few G20 economies saw merchandise trade exports increase in the second quarter of 2019: Australia (by 6.3 per cent), Canada (6.4 per cent), Mexico (2.4 per cent) and Japan (0.2 per cent). -- TradeArabia News Service

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Publication:TradeArabia (Manama, Bahrain)
Geographic Code:9CHIN
Date:Aug 29, 2019
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