mandag 26. april 2021

China Transit Risks Eyed After Suez Canal Jam

The six-day blockage of the Suez Canal ended last month without major damage to either the stranded vessel or China's economy, but the shutdown may serve as a warning to the country of its growing energy security risks. As the world's largest exporter and oil importer, China is vulnerable to transit disruptions at choke points on its vital trade routes. The grounding of the giant 200,000-metric-ton Ever Given container ship on March 23 made barely a scratch in China's trade and economic growth in the first quarter.

Exports in March rose 30.6 percent and imports jumped 38.1 percent from a year earlier in dollar terms, the General Administration of Customs (GAC) and news agencies said. The strong trade figures set the stage for first-quarter economic growth of 18.3 percent compared with the year- earlier period during the pandemic slump, the National Bureau of Statistics said. Chinese officials shrugged off the impact of the accident as largely an inconvenience. The ship was freed and refloated on March 29.