China’s trade deficit with Russia reached a record $38 billion last year as global energy prices surged following the outbreak of war in Ukraine, Report informs referring to Bloomberg.
The world’s second-largest economy purchased $114.1 billion worth of goods from Russia in 2022, up 44% from a year earlier, figures from China’s General Administration of Customs showed. By comparison, China’s total imports from around the globe were up just 1.1% for the year.
Exports to Russia rose about 13% to $76.1 billion. That led to a trade imbalance of more than triple what was seen in the previous year.
China has emerged as one of the only significant buyers - along with India and Turkiye - of crude from Russia, after the Group of Seven and European nations slapped sanctions designed to punish President Vladimir Putin for the invasion of Ukraine.
While China hasn’t joined the US and its allies in imposing a price cap on Russian oil, Beijing has enjoyed deep discounts for crude from Russia.
The country’s demand for energy is expected to pick up this year as the economy reopens following Beijing’s abandonment of Covid Zero.
Total crude imports by China jumped 41.4% last year from 2021 by value even though the volume edged down 0.9%, according to Chinese customs figures. That reflects the impact of spikes in international energy prices.