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China¡¯s Exports during the Global COVID-19 Pandemic

Yi Che (), Weiqiang Liu (), Yan Zhang () and Lin Zhao ()
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Weiqiang Liu: School of Economics, Shanghai University of Finance and Economics (SUFE), Shanghai 200433, China
Yan Zhang: School of Economics, Shanghai University of Finance and Economics (SUFE), Shanghai 200433, China
Lin Zhao: Institute for Advanced Research, Shanghai University of Finance and Economics (SUFE), Shanghai 200433, China

Frontiers of Economics in China, 2020, vol. 15, issue 4, 541-574

Abstract: The global COVID-19 pandemic caused various economic contraction in most countries, including all of China¡¯s major trading partners. Using a difference-in-differences model, this study examines the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on China¡¯s monthly exports from January 2019 to May 2020. We find strong and robust evidence that China¡¯s exports to countries at high risk from the pandemic experienced a larger decline than exports to low-risk countries after the onset of the pandemic, with the prices of exports increasing significantly. Furthermore, the results of a triple differences model show heterogeneous effects across different industries and goods. Chinese industries located upstream in the global value chain are more vulnerable than those located downstream. Industries with high labor and contract intensity (proxies for processing trade) experienced greater declines than other industries. Exports of goods with high import elasticity of substitution experienced higher prices and moderate volume losses due to the pandemic.

Keywords: China¡¯s exports; COVID-19 pandemic; global value chain; processing exports; elasticity of substitution (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F0 F1 L6 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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http://journal.hep.com.cn/fec/EN/10.3868/s060-011-020-0023-7 (application/pdf)

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