Hong Kong GDP (Q4 Preliminary)

Hong Kong’s economy continued to contract last quarter and the Coronavirus outbreak will probably keep the city in recession for a while longer.
Julian Evans-Pritchard Senior China Economist
Continue reading

More from China

China Data Response

China Official PMIs (Nov.)

The official PMIs suggest that industrial activity rebounded this month thanks to easing disruptions from power shortages while a renewed virus flare-up held back the recovery in services. And while we know little about its transmissibility and severity, the new Omicron variant could hold back a further economic recovery. On a more positive note, the surveys point to easing price pressures.

30 November 2021

China Chart Book

Omicron tests China’s zero-COVID strategy

The global spread of a more transmissible COVID variant is a particular challenge for a country trying to remain COVID-free. But after nearly two years of success suppressing infections domestically, the bar to changing course before better medical treatments or vaccines are available is high. A study published last week by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that if China were to adopt the pandemic control measures recently in place in several Western countries, it would soon be facing several hundred thousand new cases per day and 10-20,000 severe cases. These estimates were deliberately conservative, made on the assumption that natural and vaccine-derived immunity is as high in China as in the comparator countries. The actual health cost, the authors argue, would almost certainly be higher. Given these concerns, if Omicron proves harder to contain than Delta, we would expect officials to tighten containment measures in response. Economically, that would lead to further intermittent disruption to domestic activity, particularly services, and to global supply chains.

29 November 2021

China Economics Weekly

Capacity constraints put a ceiling on export outlook

In the long-run, the global spread of highly-transmissible coronavirus strains may make China’s zero-COVID stance untenable but the immediate response to concerns about B.1.1.529  is more likely to be a doubling down on the strategy, with rolling local lockdowns in response to any local cases and continued tight border controls. China’s exporters could benefit from another wave of lockdown-induced demand elsewhere in the world. But capacity limits, particularly at ports, potentially exacerbated by further port shutdowns, may limit their ability to meet orders.

26 November 2021

More from Julian Evans-Pritchard

China Data Response

China Activity & Spending (May)

Headline growth on all the key indicators dropped back last month. But after adjusting for base effects the picture was more mixed, with investment slowing, industrial output growth holding steady and retail sales accelerating. While there is still scope for a further recovery in consumption, we think investment and exports are set to cool over the coming months.

16 June 2021

China Economics Weekly

US-China rivalry: industrial policy, vaccine diplomacy

The US Senate took a leaf out of China’s industrial policy playbook this week by passing USICA, a bill that earmarks $190bn in federal funding for strategic sectors and bears striking similarities with Beijing’s controversial Made in China 2025 plan. But despite some overlap, China’s industrial policies clearly remain far broader in scope and run a much greater risk of hindering rather than helping productivity growth. Another burgeoning area of US-China competition is vaccine diplomacy. Here China has the clear lead, at least in terms of the quantity of vaccine exports. And the ongoing surge in domestic production and vaccination rates means that China could soon flood the world with doses on a far larger scale than other countries, including the US.

11 June 2021

China Data Response

China Bank Lending & Broad Credit (May)

Broad credit growth continued to slide in May and is now at its slowest since February last year. Evidence of policy tightening weighing on borrowing is clearest in bank loan growth which, apart from during last year’s lockdown, is at its weakest in nearly two decades. This will become a headwind to the economy in the second half of the year.

10 June 2021
↑ Back to top