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·         Chinese regulators go the whole hog to stem pork prices

·         Shanghai Customs strives for smooth pork import clearance



Chinese regulators go the whole hog to stem pork prices


China Daily | Editor : Li Yan

via (China) - 2019-11-25


Runaway pork prices in China receded last week, bringing much relief to consumers. Although it is still too early to claim that they will continue to fall and stabilize, it at least shows that the efforts by the regulatory authorities to stabilize pork prices have started to bear fruit.


And as the number of pigs is expected to rise next year, the current price spikes may only be cyclical.


The average wholesale price of pork dropped by 5.96 percent from a week earlier to 48.13 yuan ($6.85) per kilogram on Nov 15, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs. The decline widened significantly, compared with a decrease of 2.33 percent week-on-week on Nov 8.


Before that, surging pork prices had pushed up the inflation rate in China above 3 percent. The country's Consumer Price Index, a main gauge of inflation, rose 3.8 percent year-on-year in October, following an increase of 3 percent in September, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.


In October, pork prices rose 101.3 percent year-on-year, contributing nearly two-thirds of the CPI growth over the same period.


The continuous increase in pork prices and the CPI raised an alarm among the authorities. In its third-quarter monetary policy implementation report released on Nov 16, the People's Bank of China, the central bank, stressed that the CPI growth was mainly driven by a rapid increase in food prices, especially pork prices, whereas the prices of other goods and services remained generally stable.


The PBOC pointed out that the drop in the Producer Price Index widened in recent months mainly because of the base effect, and this did not suggest significant deflationary pressure on China's industrial products.


However, there is no foundation for continued inflation or deflation, said the report, which also noted that the follow-up monetary policy should highlight the importance of guiding market expectations and being alert to the diffusion of inflation expectations.


The government has taken multiple measures to stabilize pork supply. The State Council, China's Cabinet, decided on Aug 21 to step up efforts to stabilize hog production and ensure pork supply. The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs and several other ministries jointly launched a set of supporting measures, such as selecting a good opportunity to release emergency reserves of frozen pork.


As people will soon welcome the arrival of the Chinese New Year, ensuring stabilized pork prices has become a major task.


A decrease in pork supply due to outbreaks of African swine fever sparked the latest round of spike in pork prices, which has structural and cyclical features.


Considering that it takes a while for pork supply to recover in China, the authorities concerned should ramp up policies, such as providing pig farmers subsidies, funding support and insurance protection, to ensure that they will increase pig breeding as soon as possible.


In the meantime, China also needs to expand pork imports. The country imported 1.33 million metric tons of pork in the first three quarters of this year, up 43.6 percent year-on-year, while beef imports increased 53.4 percent to 1.13 million tons, according to the General Administration of Customs.


As pork supply increases, pork prices will stabilize...





Shanghai Customs strives for smooth pork import clearance


By:Zheng Qian  | (Shanghai, China) 



Recently, 473.9kg of Italian frozen pork was imported to China, and it is the first time such a type of pork has been allowed to access the Chinese market.


Affected by the African Swine Fever that has decimated the supply of domestic pork, pork imports in China have seen a high rate of growth this year. Data from Shanghai Customs shows that in the first 10 months of this year, 577,000 tons of imported pork were cleared through Shanghai Customs, double the amount compared with the same period of last year. Pork imports have a total value of 9.05 billion yuan, an increase of 1.6 times from last year.


How to ensure the safe and fast customs clearance of imported pork is a key issue Shanghai Customs is currently focusing on.


At the beginning of this year, the relevant departments of Shanghai Customs realized that meat importers and industry associations urgently needed to further reduce the customs clearance time and cost of imported meat. Therefore, based on the historical monitoring data and the actual situation of the Shanghai Ports, Shanghai Customs proposed an optimization plan for the inspection of imported meat. At present, the customs clearance efficiency of imported meat at the Shanghai Port has been greatly improved, and the business environment at the port has been further optimized.


Shanghai Xinshangshi International Trade Company is mainly engaged in importing meat and aquatic products. In 2018, it imported more than 80,000 tons of meat products including pork, beef and mutton from various countries, with an import value of 460 million dollars. The performance has even seen substantial improvement in 2019.


Speaking of such business success, Xu Wei, a person in charge said that it is inseparable from the government's support for import and export enterprises and continuous improvement of the business environment.“This year, Customs has twice lowered the sampling rate of the import meat, and the acceleration of the sampling time has also brought us a substantial benefit in speeding up the flow of goods and reducing the pressure on corporate funds and inventory,” said Xu.


In October, the national Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose by 3.8% year-on-year...