Hong Kong Trade Gap Widens 40% YoY In May


Hong Kong's trade deficit increased by 40 percent to HKD 35.65 billion in May 2017 from HKD 26.2 billion in the same month of the previous year, as exports went up 4 percent and imports rose at a faster 6.6 percent. Considering the five months of 2017, the trade deficit widened to HKD 180.5 billion from HKD 154.9 billion in the same period of the previous year, with exports rising by 8.2 percent and imports increasing 9.1 percent.

Year-on-year, exports increased by 4 percent to HKD 303.1 billion in May 2017, after an increase of 7.1 percent in the previous month. Exports to Asia as a whole went up by 5.5 percent, mainly to India (29.2 percent); Taiwan (16.7 percent); Vietnam (16.4 percent); Japan (6.3 percent) and China (3.8 percent). Apart from destinations in Asia, exports went up mostly to Germany (2.1 percent) and the US (1 percent).

By commodity, exports increased for: electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof (7.7 percent); office machines and automatic data processing machines (6.8 percent), and non-ferrous metals (80.4 percent). 

Imports went up by 6.6 percent to HKD 338.8 billion, after 7.3 percent rise in the preceding month. Increases were recorded from South Korea (13.1 percent); India (56.6 percent); the Philippines (26.2 percent); Singapore (8.6 percent); China (2.8 percent); Malaysia (21.2 percent) and Thailand (10.8 percent). 

By commodity, imports surged for: electrical machinery apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof (10.2 percent); miscellaneous manufactured articles (mainly jewellery, goldsmiths' and silversmiths' wares) (26.8 percent); and office machines and automatic data processing machines (8.3 percent).

A Government spokesman noted that merchandise exports grew moderately in May. Exports to major Asian markets continued to provide the main impetus to overall growth, reflecting the sustained expansion of regional trading and production activities. The spokesman commented further that looking ahead, the improving global economic situation should continue to be conducive to Asia's as well as Hong Kong's export performance. Yet, the external trading landscape is still overcast by uncertainties arising from the pace of US monetary policy normalisation, Brexit as well as other policy and political developments in the US and Europe. Also, the risks of rising protectionist sentiment and geopolitical tensions in various regions persist.

Statistics Department of Hong Kong l Yekaterina Guchshina | yekaterina@tradingeconomics.com
6/26/2017 8:50:29 AM