Farming News - China is now the world's largest agricultural importer
China is now the world's largest agricultural importer
While trade tensions and China's retaliatory tariffs slashed U.S. agricultural exports to China in 2018 and 2019, China's agricultural purchases from the rest of the world continued apace. China is now the world's largest agricultural importer, surpassing both the European Union (EU) and the United States in 2019 with imports totaling $133.1 billion. What's more, the composition of China's imports is also rapidly changing.
Whereas bulk commodities once dominated, higher-valued consumer-oriented products are now surging ahead, eclipsing the former for the first time in 2019. While implementation of the U.S.-China Economic and Trade (Phase One) Agreement and the economic response to Covid-19 currently overshadows the trade landscape, the biggest challenges facing U.S. agricultural exports in China are more competition from other suppliers and U.S. agriculture's ability to meet increasingly diverse Chinese import needs.