In this file:


·         China: Mild inflation signals stable growth trend

·         China inflation jumps to six-month high as African swine fever drives up pork prices

·         Chinese pork production to be cut 20% by ASF



Mild inflation signals stable growth trend


China Daily

via (China) - May 10, 2019


China's factory-gate inflation picked up moderately in April for a second consecutive month and may point to stable economic expansion and improving industrial profits, experts said.


The producer price index rose to a four-month high of 0.9 percent year-on-year last month, up from 0.4 percent in March, with the extractive industry leading the rise, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Thursday.


On a monthly basis, producer prices rose 0.3 percent in April, faster that the 0.1 percent increase in March, the NBS said.


Liu Chunsheng, an associate professor at the Central University of Finance and Economics in Beijing, said the PPI rise may be attributable to this year's economic recovery and supportive macro policies.


"On the other hand, the stumbling global economic recovery has weighed on prices of some bulk commodities, constraining the PPI from a higher rise," Liu said.


Niu Li, deputy head of the Department of Economic Forecasting at the State Information Center, said the moderate rise in the PPI means producers charged more in April and probably reaped higher revenues and profits.


Looking ahead, as the effect of value-added tax cutswhich affected enterprises starting from April 1filters through, the PPI may continuously recover in the remaining quarters of this year, said Hua Changchun, chief economist at Shanghai-based Guotai Junan Securities.


"As the PPI highly correlates with industrial profits, further improvements in industrial profits can also be expected," Hua said in a research note.


In March, industrial profits rose 13.9 percent year-on-year to 589.5 billion yuan ($86.4 billion), reversing a decline of 14 percent in the January-February period, the NBS said.


Despite potential improvements, experts said this year's PPI may still remain at a relatively low level, 1 percent or below.


"The PPI is closely related to enterprises' investment confidence, whose recovery often lags behind the ease in downside pressure," said Dong Dengxin, a professor at Wuhan University of Science and Technology.


The consumer price index, a gauge of inflation, rose 2.5 percent year-on-year in April, up from 2.3 percent in March, setting a half-year high as tighter supplies of pork, vegetables and fruit drove up food prices, the NBS said.


Pork prices rose 14.4 percent in April from a year earlier due in part to the African swine fever outbreak, driving the CPI up by 0.31 percentage point, the bureau said.


On a month-on-month basis, consumer prices edged up 0.1 percent, compared with the 0.4-percent drop seen a month earlier.


The CPI is on a mild inflationary trajectory, an indication of economic stability, Niu said...





China inflation jumps to six-month high as African swine fever drives up pork prices


·         Consumer prices rise to 2.5 per cent in April, up from 2.3 per cent in March, as pork prices jump 14.4 per cent, according to the National Bureau of Statistics

·         Producer price inflation rises to 0.9 per cent in April compared to a year earlier, up from 0.4 per cent in March, and above the median 0.6 per cent gain predicted


Karen Yeung, South China Morning Post

9 May, 2019


China’s consumer inflation climbed to its highest level in six months in April because of soaring pork prices, with the nation increasingly feeling the effects of the African swine fever epidemic.


Consumer price inflation accelerated to 2.5 per cent in April from a year earlier, its highest level since October, up from 2.3 per cent in March, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Thursday.


Food prices jumped 6.1 per cent in April due to higher pork and fruit prices, as the rise in pork prices accelerated to 14.4 per cent from 5.1 per cent in March.


Since officials began reporting cases of African swine fever in August, the disease has led to the culling of hundreds of thousands of live pigs and breeding stock to stop the spread of the virus that is deadly to pigs but does not affect humans. Experts believe there are far more cases than the 129 outbreaks officially reported in all provinces and autonomous regions of the country, devastating the pork industry.


To make matters worse, China has blocked imports from two Canadian pork producers, Olymel and Drummond, since April after police in Vancouver arrested Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou at the request of the United States for violating sanctions against Iran. Pork imports from the US have also been heavily restricted by tariffs of 62 per cent on frozen pork and 70 per cent on fresh pork.


In addition to higher pork prices, the NBS said that fruit prices surged 11.9 per cent after last year’s poor harvest in the northern region that caused a drop in supplies.


Meanwhile, China’s factory-gate inflation rose faster than expected last month because of higher commodity prices and the effect of government stimulus programmes that ramped up infrastructure spending alongside tax cuts to support demand...





Chinese pork production to be cut 20% by ASF


By Aidan Fortune, GlobalMeatNews



African Swine Fever (ASF) could cut Chinese pig numbers by up to 20%, a new report has found.


The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations’ (FAO) latest Food Outlook report has warned that ASF could cut the nation’s pig production by a fifth.


The report stated: “While the exact impacts are still to be determined, the disease could cause a near 20 percent decline in China's hog inventories. The sharp contraction is supported by indirect evidence, suggesting a large local contraction in the pigmeat processing industry as well as in pig feed production and sales.”​


The FAO said that the impact in China would reverberate throughout the world. “The global impact is likely to be complex. On the one hand, pigmeat imports are projected to rise by as much as 26 percent. Imports of other meats, including bovine and poultry meats, are also expected to rise. On the other hand, fewer pigs in China should translate into lower demand for feed grains and oilseeds, in particular soybeans. China imports about two-thirds of all internationally-traded soybeans, and around half of these are destined for its domestic pig herds. Imports were already slowing due to trade tensions with the United States of America; they are further reinforced by the country's decision to reduce the protein requirements for pig feed.”​


Europe to benefit​ ...