China registered stable recovery of consumption, sharp increases in foreign trade volume and growth of foreign investment in 2020 amid the global recession in the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic, according to data released by the Ministry of Commerce on Friday.

In 2020, China’s total retail sales of consumer goods reached 39.2 trillion yuan (around six trillion U.S. dollars), and final consumption accounted for 54.3 percent of China’s GDP, according to the data.

In particular, China’s auto sales have led the world for 12 consecutive years

Also, China’s online retail sales of physical goods increased by 14.8 per cent year on year, making the country the world’s largest online retail market for eight years in a row.

In addition, China’s foreign trade reached a new high. Its annual imports and exports in 2020 were 32.2 trillion yuan (about 5 trillion U.S. dollars), rising 1.9 per cent from the previous year and reaching a record high both in terms of the total scale and the international market share.

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“In particular, we have brought into full play our advantage as the largest provider of anti-epidemic supplies, providing more than 220 billion masks, 2.3 billion protective gowns and testing kits for one billion people to more than 200 countries and regions around the world, making major contribution to the global fight against the pandemic,” Qian Keming, Vice Minister of Commerce, told a press conference in Beijing.

In 2020, China’s utilization of foreign direct investment (FDI) grew despite the impact of COVID-19, reaching nearly one trillion yuan (158 billion U.S. dollars), with an increase of 6.2 percent year on year, which makes it the world’s largest recipient of FDI in 2020.

China’s outbound investment continued to move forward. In 2020, China’s investment in countries on the routes of the Belt & Road increased by 18.3 per cent.

By the end of 2020, China investment in overseas economic and trade cooperation zones had reached a total of 309.4 billion yuan (49 billion U.S. dollars), creating 373,000 jobs.

In the face of the severe and complex international situation in 2020, especially the severe impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, China succeeded in stabilizing the bulk of foreign trade and foreign investment, promoted consumption recovery, and made new breakthroughs in multilateral and bilateral economic and trade relations, said Qian.

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