Trade between China and Africa fell by 10.6% in the first 11 months from a year ago amid the pandemic, but analysts expect a rebound next year as key commodities like oil and copper recover, reported the South China Morning Post.
Chinese customs data released on Monday showed two-way trade amounted to $167.7 billion from January to November, driven down by lower commodity prices and a coronavirus-fuelled economic slump, according to analysts.
China’s exports to Africa edged up by 0.6% to $101.47 billion in the period from a year earlier. But China’s imports from Africa plunged 23.6% to $66.3 billion. The numbers to November suggest China-Africa trade in 2020 will be well off last year’s level, which the Chinese commerce ministry said was $208 billion, said the SCMP.
Analysts attributed the falling trade figures to reduced imports of raw materials from the continent and a pandemic-induced slump in key commodities such as oil and copper. China is the biggest buyer of oil and metals such as cobalt and copper from Africa but its imports were reduced amid an economic slowdown, factory and port closures and restrictions on movement to curb the spread of the coronavirus.