On Tuesday, March 7, China reported a significant drop in imports, indicating that the country’s demand is still weak despite its speedy opening up. The country’s imports decreased by 10.2 percent, according to official data released by the Chinese government.
Wang Tao, the head of China economic research at UBS, stated that imports are weakening in China’s economy, adding that “Despite the rapid opening of the country in the past two months, the year-on-year growth in demand in China may still be quite weak.”
Ms. Wang also noted that while imports of copper and iron ore improved from December due to increased construction activity, the expansion of crude oil imports declined, as did imports of IT components and automotive products.
According to Ms. Wang, their investigations indicate that the start of construction work was delayed in the first two weeks after the Chinese New Year holiday, but was faster in the third and fourth week.
The data released on Tuesday also showed that China’s exports in US dollars dropped 6.8 percent in February, further indicating that the country’s demand is still weak.
The drop in imports comes despite China’s speedy reopening of the country, which many had hoped would bolster demand. However, the latest data suggests that there is still much work to be done to ensure a strong economic recovery in China.