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Overseas Trade: China

Question for Department for International Trade

UIN 174161, tabled on 12 September 2018

To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what recent discussions he has had on trade and investment with the Government of China.

Answered on

16 October 2018

On 23-24 August 2018, my Rt hon Friend the Secretary of State for International Trade visited Beijing for the 13th UK-China Joint Economic and Trade Commission (JETCO), this was his 4th visit to China and he will visit again in November for the China International Import Expo (CIIE). During the JETCO, he had discussions with Co-Chair Commerce Minister Zhong Shan and Vice-Premier Hu Chunhua, China’s top leader covering trade.

On this visit, he met with ministerial level contacts from China Atomic Energy Authority, the State Radio and Television Administration and General Administration of Customs, securing market access for UK products using dairy ingredients sourced from outside the UK, worth £240m over five years. Additionally, he signed a protocol allowing the export of seed potatoes to China (the world’s largest consumer of potatoes).

Total trade in goods and services between the UK and China was £65.1bn in year to end 2018 Q2, a 1.2% increase from year to end 2017 Q2.

In year to end 2018 Q2, UK exports to China amounted to £21.7bn (a 7.5% increase from year to end 2017 Q2) while UK imports from China were £43.4bn (a 1.7% decrease from year to end 2017 Q2).This means the UK reported a trade deficit with China of £21.7bn, compared to a trade deficit of £23.9bn in year to end 2017 Q2.