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环球时报就钢材出口采访兰格钢铁分析师王国清

 https://www.lgmi.com    发表日期:2020-3-13 15:05:19  兰格钢铁

With the novel coronavirusspreading worldwide, posing more risks to global economic growth, China - theworld's largest exporter of goods and a crucial part of the global supply chain- is faced with new challenges, industry analysts say.

The epidemic's quick spread in overseas markets will batter China's exports andimports, and the consequences could be worse than the impact of the domesticclosure of factories, they noted.

There have been 32,800 confirmed cases of coronavirus in 109 countries andregions outside China, with the death toll nearing 900. The most infectedcountries include Italy, South Korea, Iran, France, Spain and Germany.

An employee of a Shanghai-based trading company surnamed Mo told the GlobalTimes that the firm's textile exports to Italy, one of its main exportdestinations, were suspended last week after a number of Italian cities wereput under lockdown.

"We just sent the clothes samples to the clients, and were awaiting theirapproval so that we could begin mass production in our contracting factories.But our clients have stopped working, and the local delivery network has beencut off, so the orders are in limbo," Mo lamented. As the firm had purchasedraw materials, the suspended orders could mean a loss of millions of yuan,according to Mo.

Liu Xiangying, vice general manager of Korra Bath Ware Co, a sanitary productproducer focused on exports that's based in Foshan, South China's GuangdongProvince, told the Global Times on Tuesday that the facilities have fullyresumed and employees are dealing with the orders placed before the SpringFestival holiday.

"We have a lot of orders that were not handled before the holidays. Plus,the closure of plants due to the coronavirus has delayed our schedule,"Liu said.

"With these orders I think our first-quarter business won't be affected,but it's hard to tell for the second or third quarters since the virus isspreading so quickly," she added.

About 50 percent of the company's products are exported to the US, while somego to Europe.

Liu noted that she had planned to go to industry expos in Europe to exploremarkets there but it is not feasible at the moment. "I also worry aboutwhether the Canton Fair can be held as planned."

An official with China's Ministryof Commerce said days ago that preparations for the 127th China Importand Export Fair, slated to open in April, are in the pipeline. Also known asthe Canton Fair, the event is held every spring and autumn in Guangzhou,capital of Guangdong, and it is widely seen as a barometer of China's foreigntrade.

"We are under less pressure for the US market since tariffs were reduced followingthe ceasefire of China-US trade war, but now the epidemic poses anotherobstacle, which is quite unexpected," said Liu.

In the January-February period, China's overseas shipments fell 17.2 percentfrom the same period a year earlier, customs data showed on Saturday.

It is not likely that the export situation will be improved in March as theoverseas epidemic is still on the rise, Liu Xuezhi, a macroeconomics analyst atthe Bank of Communications, said.

"It is worrying that with external demand slowing down, China will have togo through a second-round hit after the nationwide business and factoryclosures to contain the virus," said Liu Xuezhi.

However, the full year's imports won't be much affected, he noted. There willbe a boost for imports with the nation's new infrastructure projects andpost-epidemic consumption.

Steel exports stood at 7.81 million tons in January-February period, down by 27percent year-on-year, the steepest fall since March 2018.

"The epidemic has strained the growth of the global economy andmanufacturing, dampening demand for steel. It is estimated that China'sexported steel will be obviously impacted in the first half of 2020," saidWang Guoqing, research director at the Beijing Lange Steel Information ResearchCenter.

Asian countries take up the majority of China's steel exports (about 70percent) and South Korea is an important importer, yet the country has beenstruck by the epidemic, Wang told the Global Times on Tuesday.(GlobalTimes)

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