China’s Share of Global Exports Slides in 2022 as US Resource Exports Boosted by Ukraine Conflict

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China has seen its share of global exports decline, as resource exporters benefit from energy price gains driven by the war in Ukraine.

Figures from the World Trade Organisation (WTO) indicate that in 2022, China’s share of global goods exports was 14.43%, for a decrease of 0.6 percentage points compared to the previous year.

China’s share of global exports declined in every quarter of 2022 in year-on-year (YoY) terms, falling 0.42% in the first quarter, 0.43% in the second, 0.26% in the third, and 1.03% in the final quarter of the year.

These declines arrived despite impressive gains in the absolute value of China’s exports for most of 2022, with YoY rises of 0.9%, 1.5% and 0.4% in the first, second and third quarters respectively, followed by a -6.7% decline in the final quarter.

Guan Tao (管涛), Chief Global Economist at Bank of China Securities, imputed the fall in China’s share of global exports to breakneck inflation in tandem with hawkish monetary policy in major economies, both of which are dampening demand. At the same time, the conflict in Ukraine has driven up energy prices, to the benefit of resource exporting economies.

“In 2022, the surge in energy prices benefited resource-exporting countries significantly,” Guan wrote in a report published on Sina.

“Saudi Arabia, the United States, Canada, Australia, and Indonesia all experienced varying degrees of increase in their export shares. Among them, the United States’ export share increased by 0.44 percentage points.

“According to data from the U.S. Department of Commerce, the total value of U.S. petroleum and petroleum product exports reached a record $305.7 billion for the year, increasing by 56% on top of high growth of 50% in 2021, making it the biggest beneficiary of the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

“Saudi Arabia followed with an increase in its export share of 0.41 percentage points. Driven by strong demand for global commodities, Indonesia’s main exports such as coal, palm oil, and steel prices soared, contributing to a 0.14 percentage point increase in Indonesia’s export share in 2022, and accounting for 85% of ASEAN’s share increase.”