China’s Exports Rise in July, but Outlook Seems Cloudy as Global Growth Slows

China’s export growth exceeded expectations in July despite the ongoing Covid-19 resurgence in the country, official data showed Sunday.

Exports in China increased by 18.0 percent to US$333 billion in July, providing a positive boost to the economy as it fights to recover from a Covid-19 pandemic, but falling global demand may start to impact on shipments in the coming months.

Meanwhile, imports remained weak, rising 2.3 percent in July. This was lower than economists’ predictions of 4.0 percent, indicating sluggish domestic demand amid nationwide lockdowns as China tries to contain the spread of Covid-19.

The July export data beat economists’ forecasts of a 15 percent increase. This resulted in a record-breaking trade surplus of US$101.3 billion.

Despite unexpected growth in July, many economists expected exports to fall in the coming months as the global economy appears to be entering a significant slowdown, dragged down by skyrocketing prices and rising interest rates.