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Some research showed that China’s export in April was better than expected largely because of increased export to Southeast Asia. What are the projections for foreign trade in May? Will the sound momentum be maintained? Will trade expansion with Belt and Road countries be hindered by the epidemic?(2020-5-14)

Multiple factors were at play in the increased export in April. From the supply side, since China has made strategic progress in combatting the COVID-19 outbreak, business resumption has accelerated and production capacity have recovered, laying a solid foundation for export to increase. From the demand side, China’s export to Japan and South Korea rose sharply in April, as their market demand recovered relatively swiftly. ASEAN market remained by and large stable. China’s export to ASEAN in April registered above-average growth. In the first four months, China’s export to ASEAN grew by 3.9%, accounting for 15.6% of the aggregate and up by 1.5 percentage points, making ASEAN our largest export market.

As for trade with the “Belt and Road” countries, from January to April this year, the total value of China’s trade with the “ Belt and Road” countries was 2.76 trillion yuan, up 0.9%, 5.8 percentage points higher than the growth rate of foreign trade in the same period, with a share increasing by 1.7 percentage points to 30.4%.
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The epidemic continues to spread around the world, posing challenges to China's trade and economic cooperation with the “Belt and Road” countries. In the short term, the epidemic has caused inconvenience to the flow of goods and personnel exchanges, and the link between the industrial chain and the supply chain is not very smooth. However, in the long run, China's trade and cooperation with relevant countries has a solid foundation and still has great potential.
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This epidemic highlights the necessity and urgency of deepening the joint development of the “Belt and Road” Initiative. At the beginning of the outbreak, many “Belt and Road” countries offered China assistance in many ways on their initiative, such as epidemic prevention supplies. With China's domestic epidemic prevention and control improving and the production capacity of epidemic prevention supplies increasing, China has also done its best to provide large amounts of medical supplies to several “Belt and Road” countries. The epidemic prevention and control cooperation featuring mutual assistance and solidarity clearly reflects the spirit of the “Belt and Road” and a joint effort to build a community of shared future for mankind.
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In the next step, we will continue to strengthen cooperation with the “Belt and Road” countries to jointly combat the epidemic, consolidate the good momentum of economic and trade development, further improve the level of facilitation, and promote the steady and healthy development of trade and economic cooperation. Thank you!

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