Summary of Trends in International Trade for March 2022

2022-04-07

International energy prices continued to soar: The monthly average prices of crude oil in March 2022 continued to rise sharply. Russia and Ukraine have been unable to reach a ceasefire agreement, and European countries and United States have imposed economic and individual sanctions on Russia, expelling 7 Russian banks from the swift system. At the same time, the United States will ban the import of Russian oil, and the United Kingdom and the European Union are considering gradually reducing energy imports from Russia, which pushing up the price of Brent crude oil to a 14-year high.

Taiwan’s exports in February 2022 reached US$37.45 billion, with an annual growth rate of 34.8%. Due to the continuous recovery of global economy, the booming demand for emerging applications technology opportunities and the high prices level in international raw material markets, which drove Taiwan’s export to hit a new high in the same month compared to the past years.

The imports amounted to US$31.64 billion in February 2022, with an annual growth rate of 35.3%. Due to the continued strong export-derived demand, especially the powerful demand for semiconductor equipment, and the continued high prices level in international raw material markets, which has pushed the imports to a new high record compared to the same period of previous year.

Observations on the trade performance of Taiwan and its major trading partners:

Taiwan's exports in February 2022 to our major trading partners (China, ASEAN, US, Japan, and EU) reached a new record to the same month of past years. The increase in exports to US was the highest, at 40.3%, followed by exports to ASEAN, China, EU and Japan by 34.6%, 34.5%, 32.3% and 15.1%, respectively.

In terms of imports, in February 2022, Taiwan's imports from our major trading partners (China, ASEAN, US, Japan, and EU) showed the highest growth from ASEAN, at 42.4%, followed by 33.8 % from US, 28.3% from China, 26.8% from Japan, and 2.8% from EU.

Of the top 10 exports in February 2022, the export value of electrical machinery equipment and parts (HS85) was the highest at US$19.27 billion, followed by mechanical appliances and parts (HS84) at US$4.48 billion. In terms of the rate of change, mineral products (HS27) showed the strongest growth with an annual increase of 91.9%, followed by iron and steel (HS72) with an annual growth of 71.0%. As the prices of foundry products and raw materials rose, and international demand continued to increase, the export momentum continued to be strong.

Of the top 10 imports in February 2022, the import value of electrical machinery equipment and parts (HS85) was the highest at US$10.07 billion, followed by mineral products (HS27) at US$4.95 billion. In terms of the rate of change, mineral products (HS27) increased with the highest growth rate by 69.0%, followed by copper and articles thereof (HS74), which increased by 55.6%. The main reason is that the export-derived demand continued to strengthen, the international raw material prices persisted in high level, and the effect of inventory replenishment, strengthen the performance of import growth.

CTR:173