BUSINESS China boosts trade with Belt and Road countries, expands imports

BUSINESS

China boosts trade with Belt and Road countries, expands imports

Xinhua

18:09, May 18, 2020

The railway hopper cars produced by CRRC in Changzhou, Jiangsu province are packed and ready to be transported to Guinea, the country along Belt and Road, on April 27, 2020. (Photo: Sipa)

BEIJING -- China will further bolster trade and investments with countries along the Belt and Road, among other efforts to facilitate foreign trade against pandemic challenges, officials said Monday.

The country will explore emerging markets while maintaining ties with traditional ones amid virus-hit global demand, Commerce Minister Zhong Shan told a press conference, citing increasing trade volume with countries along the Belt and Road.

Official data showed China's trade of goods with Belt and Road countries rose 0.9 percent year on year in the first four months when total foreign trade contracted 4.9 percent, while non-financial outbound direct investment (ODI) to the countries climbed 13.4 percent in US dollar terms in the same period.

China will work with countries along the Belt and Road to help tackle difficulties for overseas companies and projects, establish more free-trade zones, and include more countries in investment cooperation, said Vice Minister of Commerce Wang Bingnan.

Total trade of goods between China and Belt and Road countries had topped $7.8 trillion from 2013 to 2019, with non-financial ODI over $110 billion, data from the Ministry of Commerce (MOC) showed.

Meanwhile, the country will actively expand imports, especially with the help of the 3rd China International Import Expo scheduled from Nov. 5 to 10, said Zhong.

The MOC also said Monday that measures to cushion trade firms from pandemic shocks are filtering through, as domestic sales volume of export firms grew 17 percent in April and 110,000 companies have received services from the China Export & Credit Insurance Corporation.

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