Value of Hong Kong’s total exports of goods decreased by 1.4% in May 2022

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27th June 2022 – (Hong Kong) The Census and Statistics Department (C&SD) released today the external merchandise trade statistics for May 2022. In May 2022, the value of Hong Kong’s total exports of goods decreased by 1.4%, whereas the value of imports of goods increased by 1.3% over a year earlier.

In May 2022, the value of total exports of goods decreased by 1.4% over a year earlier to $388.1 billion, after a year-on-year increase of 1.1% in April 2022. Concurrently, the value of imports of goods increased by 1.3% over a year earlier to $424.8 billion in May 2022, after a year-on-year increase of 2.1% in April 2022. A visible trade deficit of $36.7 billion, equivalent to 8.6% of the value of imports of goods, was recorded in May 2022.
 
 For the first five months of 2022 as a whole, the value of total exports of goods increased by 1.9% over the same period in 2021. Concurrently, the value of imports of goods increased by 2.4%. A visible trade deficit of $137.1 billion, equivalent to 6.7% of the value of imports of goods, was recorded in the first five months of 2022.
 
Comparing the three-month period ending May 2022 with the preceding three months on a seasonally adjusted basis, the value of total exports of goods decreased by 11.4%. Meanwhile, the value of imports of goods decreased by 9.0%.
 
Analysis by country/territory
 
Comparing May 2022 with May 2021, total exports to Asia as a whole dropped by 2.7%. In this region, decreases were registered in the values of total exports to some major destinations, in particular Japan (-13.9%) and the mainland of China (the Mainland) (-10.1%). On the other hand, increases were recorded in the values of total exports to India (+93.5%), Malaysia (+46.7%), Singapore (+32.6%) and Korea (+29.0%).
 
Apart from destinations in Asia, increases were registered in the values of total exports to some major destinations in other regions, in particular the USA (+17.4%) and Germany (+2.5%).
 
Over the same period of comparison, increases were registered in the values of imports from some major suppliers, in particular Vietnam (+33.0%), Malaysia (+29.7%) and Taiwan (+17.5%). Concurrently, decreases were recorded in the values of imports from Thailand (-14.7%), the Mainland (-5.8%) and Japan (-4.2%).
 
For the first five months of 2022 as a whole, year-on-year increases were registered in the values of total exports to most major destinations, in particular India (+60.4%), Taiwan (+30.7%), Singapore (+30.2%) and the United Arab Emirates (+29.4%). However, the value of total exports to the Mainland decreased by 4.6%.

Over the same period of comparison, year-on-year increases were registered in the values of imports from most major suppliers, in particular Taiwan (+25.1%), Vietnam (+13.1%), the USA (+11.1%) and the Philippines (+9.2%). However, decreases were recorded in the values of imports from Japan (-4.2%) and the Mainland (-3.7%).
 
Analysis by major commodity
 
 Comparing May 2022 with May 2021, decreases were registered in the values of total exports of some principal commodity divisions, in particular “telecommunications and sound recording and reproducing apparatus and equipment” (by $13.8 billion or -23.7%), “miscellaneous manufactured articles (mainly jewellery, goldsmiths’ and silversmiths’ wares)” (by $2.7 billion or -13.4%) and “non-ferrous metals” (by $1.5 billion or -16.9%). However, increases were registered in the values of total exports of “electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof” (by $9.9 billion or 5.6%) and “professional, scientific and controlling instruments and apparatus” (by $4.6 billion or 55.0%).

Over the same period of comparison, increases were registered in the values of imports of most principal commodity divisions, in particular “electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof” (by $13.1 billion or 7.2%), “professional, scientific and controlling instruments and apparatus” (by $4.2 billion or 47.8%), “miscellaneous manufactured articles (mainly jewellery, goldsmiths’ and silversmiths’ wares)” (by $3.0 billion or 12.3%) and “office machines and automatic data processing machines” (by $2.3 billion or 6.7%). However, a decrease was registered in the value of imports of “telecommunications and sound recording and reproducing apparatus and equipment” (by $13.9 billion or -24.1%).
 
For the first five months of 2022 as a whole, year-on-year increases were registered in the values of total exports of some principal commodity divisions, in particular “electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof” (by $91.1 billion or 10.7%), “professional, scientific and controlling instruments and apparatus” (by $21.4 billion or 52.6%), “office machines and automatic data processing machines” (by $17.1 billion or 8.7%) and “miscellaneous manufactured articles (mainly jewellery, goldsmiths’ and silversmiths’ wares)” (by $5.9 billion or 6.6%). However, a year-on-year decrease was registered in the value of total exports of “telecommunications and sound recording and reproducing apparatus and equipment” (by $66.3 billion or -22.7%).
 
Over the same period of comparison, year-on-year increases were registered in the values of imports of most principal commodity divisions, in particular “electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof” (by $70.3 billion or 8.0%), “office machines and automatic data processing machines” (by $23.2 billion or 14.9%), “professional, scientific and controlling instruments and apparatus” (by $17.8 billion or 43.3%) and “petroleum, petroleum products and related materials” (by $9.2 billion or 42.6%). However, a year-on-year decrease was registered in the value of imports of “telecommunications and sound recording and reproducing apparatus and equipment” (by $61.5 billion or -21.2%).

 A Government spokesman said that the value of merchandise exports turned to a mild year-on-year decline in May 2022 as the global economy faced increasing headwinds. Exports to the Mainland fell further while exports to the US and the EU saw moderated growth. Meanwhile, exports to most other major Asian markets continued to record solid growth.
 
Looking forward, the worsened global economic prospects will continue to weigh on Hong Kong’s export performance. The step-up in monetary policy tightening by many major central banks to curb soaring inflation will further dampen global economic growth. The development of the situation in Ukraine and the lingering threat of the pandemic also add uncertainties. The Government will monitor the situation closely.
 

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