China’s Progress on U.S. Trade Deal Slowed Again in May

U.S. and Chinese flags sit on a table. (Photographer: Jonathan Alcorn/Bloomberg)

China’s Progress on U.S. Trade Deal Slowed Again in May

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China’s imports of American goods slowed again in May, putting the purchase targets agreed with the U.S. in the 2020 trade deal even further out of reach.

China bought almost $10 billion worth of manufactured, agricultural and energy goods from the U.S. in May, the lowest monthly total since October 2020. That took total imports to almost $157 billion since January 2020, 41.4% of the targets the two nations agreed at that time.

China’s Progress on U.S. Trade Deal Slowed Again in May

The slowdown was despite corn imports surging to a record in the month, with ships carrying the crop stuck waiting for weeks off China’s coast before they could offload the crop. China is also buying agricultural products for delivery from later in the year, and these will bump up the totals somewhat once they actually arrive in China.

Unit: Million U.S. DollarTargetTotal2021202120212021Total
All products378,383156,8199,82110,36813,29510,70199,883
Manufactured products232,63397,4976,3686,2716,7815,31766,524
1. Industrial Machinery24,6391,5891,5851,7171,43016,818
2. Electrical equipment and machinery9,3815305585794206,710
3. Pharmaceutical products7,3013774317163964,936
4. Aircraft3,0532184645902,024
5. Vehicles12,7697907337447578,639
6. Optical and medical instruments7,2534884906223614,905
7. Iron and steel82563404536606
8. Other manufactured goods32,2752,3131,9712,2991,91721,887
Electronic integrated circuits21,0261,5321,2651,4971,29214,222
Agricultural products80,17342,3631,9842,9065,1743,87123,565
9. Oilseed (Soybean)21,1381511,1353,6142,56610,635
10. Meat4,6793343053402443,131
11. Cereals5,5117657474884842,456
12. Cotton2,6001251242342301,605
13. Other agricultural commodities7,3735505264492974,961
14. Seafood1,06159684950779
Energy products65,57816,9601,4701,1911,3401,5149,794
15. Liquefied natural gas2,4522951281563891,104
16. Crude Oil9,2785514596605636,277
17. Refined products4,6234884394155212,300
18. Coal60713716610940113

Note 1: Monthly services data are not available from China authorities.

Source: China General Administration of Customs

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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