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China‘s soybean imports up as phase one trade deal rolls inCarly Stevenson

China‘s soybean imports up as phase one trade deal rolls inCarly Stevenson | July 2, 2020
Imported soybeans seen at a port in Nantong, East China‘s Jiangsu Province in August, 2018. Photo: IC

China‘s soybean imports in the first five months this year jumped 6.8 percent as the phase one deal steadily rolls in, according to the statistics released by the General Administration of Customs (GAC) on Sunday.

The import of soybeans from January to May totaled 33.88 million tons, with the average import price down 1.7 percent to 2,770.2 yuan ($391) per ton, according to the GAC.

Bai Ming, a research fellow at the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation told the Global Times on Sunday that the increased figure in soybean imports is showing positive development in the fulfillment of the phase one deal, which promises purchases of $80 billion worth of agricultural products in two years.

“During this time of year, soybean exports from the US are usually slower as it is the growing season,” Bai said, “But in the past few months imports of US soybeans have been on the rise as an effort to fulfill the phase one deal.”

According to a statement sent to the Global Times by the US Soybean Export Council on Thursday, US soybean exports to China has amounted to 12.7 million metric tons so far for the 2019-2020 marketing year.

Li Kuiwen, spokesperson for the GAC, said at a press conference that in the first quarter of this year, China‘s imports of US soybeans jumped more than twofold, totaling 7.81 million tons.

The US is the second source of soybeans to China‘s import-reliant domestic soybean market after Brazil in 2019. According to the GAC, around 85 percent of the total soybean consumption was imported, and 19 percent of which were from the US.

According to the US Soybean Export Council, the feedback from the US government officials on the implementation of the phase one deal have been positive and the council has seen purchases taking place in the last few weeks.