Affected by the China-U.S. trade friction, China's soybean and pork imports from the United States fell heavily while those from other countries posted significant growth, the Ministry of Commerce (MOC) said Thursday.
In the first four months, China's soybean imports dropped 7.9 percent year on year, with imports of U.S. soybeans plunging by over 70 percent from a year ago to 4.31 million tonnes, said MOC spokesperson Gao Feng.
In contrast, the country's soybean imports from Brazil jumped by 46.8 percent and those from Argentina saw a 23-fold growth to 2.15 million tonnes during the same period.
China is the largest overseas market for U.S. soybeans. Statistics show U.S. soybean exports to China accounted for 62.3 percent of its total soybean exports in 2016. The ratio dropped to 17.9 percent in 2018 as a result of the U.S. trade protectionism policies.
Trade friction also impacted pork imports, which dipped 0.9 percent year on year to 774,000 tonnes in the first four months.
Gao said China's pork imports from the United States in the January-April period declined 53.6 percent from the previous year, while pork imports from Spain, Canada, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands all rose by more than 10 percent year on year during the same period.
"The Chinese market is an open market where competitive products from all countries are welcome," Gao said.
He also said that import data of soybeans and pork showed U.S. trade protectionism and bullying had caused a huge impact on agricultural goods trade between the two countries, damaging both sides.