The value of Chinese exports increased by 7% in 2022, while imports grew only 2.5%. This follows growth of 30% in 2021. These numbers hide some very uneven performance on a province and trading partner level, which reflect changing Chinese trading patterns with key partners such as the US, but also economic weakness in Europe.
Trade Data Service
Brazilian air trade grew by 2% in 2022 and is now about 14% above 2019 levels. As with other air cargo markets around the world the first half of the year was strong while volumes declined in the second half of the year and particularly in November and December. This is in line with a drop in manufacturing activity in the last months of the year. Manufacturing activity is expected to recover in 2023. In the medium-term Brazil could well benefit from a trend to dual sourcing.
The overall expectation for trade in most large economies – the US, the European Union, Japan and even China - is for little growth or even declining volumes. The next year is likely to look very different to last year and the next three years very different to the last three years. Southeast Asia and South Asia are expected to show much stronger performance than Northeast Asia. This article discusses 2022 and 2023 import and export performance across Northeast, Southeast and South Asia.
Sufficient, reliable, and affordable shipping capacity is crucial for the viability of import and export businesses. Over the past three years most of that was missing due to congestion, shutdowns, blank sailings, and obscene shipping rates. Fortunately, things are improving, but problems remain, particularly with regard to connectivity in smaller markets. Under these circumstances there is merit in industry and Government considering taking control of feeder capacity to support ongoing connections for exporters and importers into hubs where connectivity has been largely unaffected over the past years.
Airfreight is primarily an industrial tool, with roughly three quarters of airfreight traffic linked to the various stages of production. Global manufacturing and airfreight tend to move in sync. Based on the outlook for manufacturing we expect US airfreight exports to decline by about 7% and imports to drop by about 3% in 2023.
China accounts for almost a quarter of the value of worldwide imports of manufactured goods. That is significantly more than any other country. Germany, by contrast, accounts for about 8%, the US 7% and Japan about 5%. The European Union and the United Kingdom account for about the same amount as China, but almost two thirds of this trade is between countries within the bloc. While China’s weight in the world economy has increased, this increase has been uneven and the dependence on China varies significantly across economies.
Transatlantic air cargo was a real bright spot in 2022, both in terms of volumes and market rates. Containerised shipping did not do as well in volume terms, but rates have remained strong even as they have tumbled back down to earth in other markets. This analysis discusses the interplay between demand, capacity, and the relative competitive position between air and sea freight and how this is likely to evolve over the next year.
China is the primary source of cross border e-commerce worldwide, on average accounting for about one third of the origin of all purchases. Growth has stalled over the last three years, with high transportation costs and lack of capacity an impediment to growth.
Apparel and footwear accounts for about 9% of US airfreight imports and about 5% of US containerised imports by sea. China is the single largest market, but growth has come from Vietnam, Cambodia, India and Bangladesh. Air has a share of roughly 6% of the weight and 18% of the value of shipments, but subject to large fluctuations and differences between market.
Over the past decade years meat exports accounted between four and six percent of the value of Australian exports. Exports of fresh and frozen meat peaked in 2019 and have declined 20% mainly due to a drop in trade with China.