Beijing's foreign trade expands 18.9% in first four months

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Beijing's total import and export expanded 18.9% year on year to 1.1 trillion yuan (US$162.1 billion) in the first four months of 2022, according to data from Beijing Customs.

Import grew 26.1% year on year to 940.37 billion yuan, while export went down 10.6% year on year to 162.92 billion yuan in the January-April period, the data shows.

Beijing's total trade volume have sustained positive growth since last February. In this April alone, the city's foreign trade volume increased by 23.8% year on year to 302.9 billion yuan.

Due to price hikes of energy, grain, and other bulk commodities, Beijing's import volume has witnessed a significant increase. In the first four months, the value of imported crude oil, liquefied natural gas, and coal and lignite rose by 58%, 64.2%, and 80.7% as their prices went up 57.2%, 101.6%, and 97.6%, respectively. Together they accounted for 52.9% of the city's total import during the period.

The city also saw its foreign trade with countries along the Belt and Road rise 29.5% to 610.64 billion yuan, 10.6 percentage points higher than Beijing's overall growth rate of foreign trade and accounting for 55.3% of the total import and export during the period.

Beijing's state-owned enterprises continued to play a leading role in the expansion of foreign trade, with its total foreign trade volume increasing by 27.9% to 793.8 billion yuan, accounting for 71.9% of the city's total during the period. 

In addition, facing the resurgence of COVID-19, Beijing has stepped up efforts to ensure smooth logistics to beef up foreign trade flows and stabilize industrial and supply chains. In the first quarter of this year, the time needed for import clearance and export clearance at Beijing Customs were slashed by 7.5% and 14%, respectively, according to a customs official.

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