The trade deficit in Hong Kong widened to HKD 48.8 billion in February of 2019 from a HKD 42.7 billion gap a year earlier as exports went down 6.9 percent and imports declined at a slower 3.8 percent. Trade flows in January and February tend to be volatile due to difference in timing of the Lunar New Year holidays. Considering the first two months of the year, the trade deficit narrowed to HKD 59.3 billion from HKD 74.4 billion a year earlier as exports went down 3.1 percent and imports fell at a faster 5 percent. Balance of Trade in Hong Kong averaged -7862.98 HKD Million from 1952 until 2019, reaching an all time high of 7228 HKD Million in January of 2009 and a record low of -59898 HKD Million in December of 2017.

Balance of Trade in Hong Kong is expected to be -53357.00 HKD Million by the end of this quarter, according to Trading Economics global macro models and analysts expectations. Looking forward, we estimate Balance of Trade in Hong Kong to stand at -52258.00 in 12 months time. In the long-term, the Hong Kong Balance of Trade is projected to trend around -52288.00 HKD Million in 2020, according to our econometric models.

Hong Kong Balance of Trade
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Calendar GMT Actual Previous Consensus TEForecast
2018-12-27 08:30 AM Balance of Trade H$-45B H$-44.5B H$ -41.6B
2019-01-28 08:30 AM Balance of Trade H$-51.2B H$-45B
2019-02-26 08:30 AM Balance of Trade H$-10.3B H$-51.2B H$-45B
2019-03-26 08:30 AM Balance of Trade H$-48.8B H$-10.3B H$-46B
2019-04-29 08:30 AM Balance of Trade H$-48.8B
2019-05-27 08:30 AM Balance of Trade
2019-06-25 08:30 AM Balance of Trade



Hong Kong Trade Gap Rises in February

The trade deficit in Hong Kong widened to HKD 48.8 billion in February of 2019 from a HKD 42.7 billion gap a year earlier as exports went down 6.9 percent and imports declined at a slower 3.8 percent. Trade flows in January and February tend to be volatile due to difference in timing of the Lunar New Year holidays. Considering the first two months of the year, the trade deficit narrowed to HKD 59.3 billion from HKD 74.4 billion a year earlier as exports went down 3.1 percent and imports fell at a faster 5 percent.

In February of 2019, sales shrank 6.9 percent year-on-year to HKD 228.7 billion, mainly due to lower sales of electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof (-8 percent); office machines and automatic data processing machines (-13.7 percent); and miscellaneous manufactured articles (mainly jewellery, goldsmiths' and silversmiths' wares) (-13 percent). However, an increase was registered in sales of telecommunications and sound recording and reproducing apparatus and equipment (3.8 percent). Shipments to Asia as a whole went down 7.8 percent, namely sales to India (-41.2 percent), Taiwan (-26.5 percent), Japan (-19.7 percent) and China (-5.3 percent). On the other hand, increases were seen in exports to Malaysia (14.3 percent), Vietnam (12.2 percent) and Singapore (11.1 percent). Apart from destinations in Asia, decreases were registered in shipments to the US (-20.5 percent) and Germany (-15 percent) while an increase was registered in exports to the United Kingdom (30.7 percent).

Imports fell 3.8 percent to HKD 277.5 billion, namely purchases of electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof (-7.5 percent); office machines and automatic data processing machines (-12.7 percent); and articles of apparel and clothing accessories (-21.6 percent). However, an increase was registered in the imports of non-metallic mineral manufactures (8.3 percent). Among major import partners, decreases were registered purchases from South Korea (-23.4 percent), Thailand (-15.4 percent), Malaysia (-12.1 percent), Switzerland (-11.3 percent) and China (-10.2 percent). Concurrently, increases were recorded in imports from Singapore (16.8 percent) and the US (14.9 percent).

A Government spokesman said that, similar to the situations in many other Asian economies, Hong Kong's exports remained weak in early 2019, dampened by easing global economic growth and the US-China trade tensions. In the near term, the external trading environment is likely to remain challenging. While the US-China trade negotiations have reportedly entered the final stage, there are still uncertainties about whether and when the two sides will reach a final agreement. Other external developments, including global growth moderation and Brexit, also warrant attention. 


Joana Taborda | joana.taborda@tradingeconomics.com
3/26/2019 9:20:22 AM



Hong Kong Trade Last Previous Highest Lowest Unit
Balance of Trade -48834.00 -10299.00 7228.00 -59898.00 HKD Million [+]
Current Account 42078.00 48005.00 92020.00 -29059.00 HKD Million [+]
Current Account to GDP 4.30 4.70 15.00 -6.30 percent [+]
Imports 277508.00 359000.00 428452.00 230.00 HKD Million [+]
Exports 228674.00 348701.00 383651.50 172.00 HKD Million [+]
Terms of Trade 100.30 100.90 108.50 99.00 Index Points [+]
Capital Flows -66114.00 -27476.00 22424.00 -89673.00 HKD Million [+]
Tourist Arrivals 5589628.00 6784406.00 6784406.00 427254.00 [+]
Gold Reserves 2.10 2.10 2.10 2.08 Tonnes [+]
Foreign Direct Investment 15189.80 13356.84 15189.80 1955.85 HKD Billion [+]
External Debt 13257610.00 12972265.00 13257610.00 2707907.00 HKD Million [+]

Exports by Country  |   Exports by Category  |   Imports by Country  |   Imports by Category



Hong Kong Balance of Trade

Since the late 1990’s Hong Kong has been recording trade deficits, as imports grew at a faster pace than exports. Hong Kong major exports are electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances; telecommunications and sound equipment and automatic data processing machines. The country imports mainly machinery and transport equipment; miscellaneous manufactured articles; manufactured goods and food and live animals. Main trading partner is China (40 percent of total exports and 47 percent of total imports). Others include: Japan, Singapore, Taiwan and the United States. This page provides the latest reported value for - Hong Kong Balance of Trade - plus previous releases, historical high and low, short-term forecast and long-term prediction, economic calendar, survey consensus and news. Hong Kong Balance of Trade - actual data, historical chart and calendar of releases - was last updated on April of 2019.

Actual Previous Highest Lowest Dates Unit Frequency
-48834.00 -10299.00 7228.00 -59898.00 1952 - 2019 HKD Million Monthly




Country Last Previous
Argentina 460.00 Feb/19
Australia 4801.00 Feb/19
Brazil 4990.00 Mar/19
Canada -2894.80 Feb/19
China 326.47 Mar/19
Euro Area 17938.00 Feb/19
France -4002.00 Feb/19
Germany 17900.00 Feb/19
India -10890.00 Mar/19
Indonesia 540.20 Mar/19
Italy 3267.83 Feb/19
Japan 528.50 Mar/19
Mexico 1222.00 Feb/19
Netherlands 5130.00 Feb/19
Russia 15671.00 Feb/19
Saudi Arabia 180059.00 Dec/18
Singapore 3615.50 Mar/19
South Africa 3990.00 Feb/19
South Korea 5222.00 Mar/19
Spain -4483276.00 Jan/19
Switzerland 2494.00 Mar/19
Turkey -2134.33 Feb/19
United Kingdom -4860.00 Feb/19
United States -49382.00 Feb/19


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