China’s imports of crucial commodities are presenting a rapid development the last months, showing that Beijing’s efforts may lead to a fruitful outcome and its trade dispute with the US may not be as harmful as expected, according to Reuters’ Clyde Russell.
Specifically, China’s imports in November showed both a negative and positive impact, with month-on-month gains in crude oil and copper, and declines in iron ore and coal.
The increases/decreases were seen in:
The imports were at a 13-month high of 483,000 tonnes for unwrought metal and 2.16 million tonnes for ores and concentrates, gains of 12.1% and 12.7% from October, respectively.
* Yet, although unwrought copper imports decreased by 8.5% in November, they mark an improvement on the 10% drop in the first ten months and an 11.3% decline in the first nine.
#2 Crude oil imports
They achieved a 11.3 million bpd record in November, increasing by 10.5% for the first 11 months of 2019, in comparison to the same period the previous year.
Concerning the first 10 months: Year-to-date gain was at 10.5% / The first 9 months year-to-date gain reached the 9.7%.
#3 Coal imports
Although they brought a 19.1% decline from October’s 25.69 million tonnes, they presented an increase of 8.5% from November a year earlier.
It is stated that the China exceeded its target in the first 11 months with imports reaching the 299.3 million tonnes, surpassing the full year total of 281.2 million in 2018.
In addition, coal imports increased by 10.2% in the first 11 months of 2019 when comparing them to the same period last year, an acceleration on the 9.6% growth for the first 10 months and the 9.5% rise in the first nine months.
#4 Ores and concentrates
Year-to-date growth in November in comparison to the first 11 months of 2018: 10.2%, up from year-to-date growth of 8.3% in the first 10 months, and 6.8% in the first nine.
Iron ore imports were at 90.65 tonnes in November, declining from October’s 92.86 million, yet increased by 5.1% from 86.25 million in November last year.
For the first 11 months of 2019, iron ore imports decreased by 0.7% from the same period in 2018, an improvement on the decrease of 1.6% for the first 10 months and a drop of 2.4% for the first nine months.
It is commented that although iron ore seem declined, this is an improvement as shipments from Brazil recover from being hampered in the first half of the year. A factor that may have played its role in the improvement may be the stronger demand for ore from steel mills, given gains in steel production and a recent recovery in profit margins.
Concluding, considering the improvement explained above, it is obvious that China’s imports in four crucial commodities present a resilience and development.