BEIJING — China’s export growth slowed sharply in November while imports unexpectedly contracted, raising pressure on policymakers to release more stimulus measures.
China’s exports rose 4.7 percent year on year to $211.66 billion in November, the General Administration of Customs (GAC) said on Dec 8.
The growth rate for November decelerated compared to October’s 11.6 percent and 15.3 percent in September, according to the GAC.
Imports stood at $157.19 billion, down 6.7 percent, the biggest drop since March.
Total exports and imports in November amounted to $368.85 billion, down 0.5 percent year on year with a record trade surplus of $54.47 billion, expanding 61.4 percent.
In the first eleven months of the year, China’s imports and exports hit $3.9 trillion, up 3.4 percent, resulting in a record trade surplus of $332.5 billion during the January-November period, up 42.2 percent year on year.
The sharp slowdown in export growth means there is a risk to China’s growth this year, as both domestic and external demand weakened, ANZ economist Liu Li-Gang said in a report in response to the data.
During the Jan-Nov period, trade with the European Union, China’s largest trading partner, grew 8.9 percent to 3.43 trillion yuan ($560 billion).
Trade with the United States, China’s second-largest trading partner, came in at 3.09 trillion yuan, up 5.2 percent. China-ASEAN trade went up 7.1 percent to 2.66 trillion yuan.
In contrast, trade between the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong fell 8.9 percent to 2.05 trillion yuan in the first eleven months, while trade with Japan fell 0.7 percent to 1.75 trillion yuan.
The GAC said that total trade volume of foreign-invested companies during the period accounted for 46 percent of the nation’s total trade during the first eleven months. Privately owned companies accounted for 34.5 percent, and State-owned firms had 17.5 percent of the trade volume, with the remaining portion coming from micro-sized or individual businesses.
Machinery, garments, textiles, shoes, toys, and plastics exports rose during the first eleven months, while exports in electronics and home furniture fell.