Members’ Trade Data Analysis: China April 2020 Summary

June 4, 2020

China’s import data for April is out and the country continues to show massive YOY import volume increases, despite COVID-19. Up by 74% in March, April 2020 beat the previous year by 35%, totalling at 53,965 tonnes. Though still growing YOY, Q1 was actually relatively stable and the pandemic stunted the overall growth projected for this period.

Though the import volumes were up, import prices were down and, in April, dropped below the two-year low we saw in March.  The price has been on a downward trend since the year started, coming off of a pre-epidemic December 2019 peak of $6.36/kg.

China’s current path to recovery from COVID has made it the target for exporters who historically target the US and European markets but there are reportedly high stocks in cold storage. This is further pushing down import prices in China. Low domestic prices, however, have encouraged people to buy shrimp.

In April, India sent relatively little shrimp to China, compared to Ecuador, but are currently stocking at full swing. The Indian harvest is expected in September and it remains to be seen prices do around that time. If the major markets have yet to completely recover from COVID, this could put further pressure on prices and producers.

Even though China is on the path to recovery, as lockdown measures ease and restaurants and borders open, local sources don’t expect trade to truly recover until September or October and many Chinese consumers are still hesitant to visit restaurants.

This summary offers you a sneak peek at China’s Trade Data Analysis for April 2020. Members, find the full report in your library, which includes the breakdown of imports by country and price developments over the first quarter of the year.

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*As China published their January and February imports data, combined, we were unable to separate January’s imports from those of February. For this reason, in the figures, we have taken the average these two months.