World US trade deficit rises 1.9 percent as imports set new record
Biden’s trade nominee vows ‘worker-centric’ model to protect jobs
US Trade Representative nominee’s stance suggests permanent shift away from liberalisation policies of pre-Trump era.At her Senate confirmation hearing to become the US Trade Representative (USTR), Tai also called for a revamp of global trade rules to eliminate what she called “grey areas” exploited by China and end a “race to the bottom” that she said had hurt workers and the environment.
United States imports of goods broke a record in January and pushed the trade deficit 1.9 percent higher as the coronavirus pandemic distorted global commerce.
The gap between the goods and services the US sold and what it bought abroad rose to $68.2bn from $67bn in December, the US Department of Commerce reported Friday. Exports rose 1 percent to $191.9bn, while imports increased 1.2 percent to $260.2bn.
'Now is not the time for tax rises', say MPs
The Treasury Committee says "now is not the time" for rises, but they may be needed in the future.Ahead of the Budget announcement on Wednesday, a Treasury Committee report says public finances are on an "unsustainable long-term trajectory".
Imports of goods increased $3.4bn to a record $221.1bn in January, led by pharmaceuticals, which rose $5bn, or 39 percent, to $17.4bn. Imports of services fell about 1 percent.
US exports of goods rose $2.1bn to $135.7bn in January, while exports of services, like transport and travel, declined $0.3bn to $56.3bn.
The politically sensitive trade gap with China fell 3.2 percent to $27.2bn. The trade deficit with Mexico rose $1.6bn to $11.9bn in January.
The coronavirus has upended trade in services such as education and travel, sections of the economy in which the US runs persistent surpluses. Measured in dollars, monthly exports of US services have declined by nearly one-fourth since the virus outbreak about a year ago.
Year-over-year, the goods and services deficit climbed to $23.8bn, or 53.7 percent, from January 2020.
Turkey’s economy grew by 1.8% in 2020, avoiding COVID contraction
Growth was propelled by a near doubling of lending by state banks to quell the initial impact of the coronavirus crisis.Propelled by a burst of credit in mid-2020, fourth-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) grew 1.7 percent from the previous quarter on a seasonally and calendar-adjusted basis, the Turkish Statistical Institute said.
Last month, Commerce reported that in 2020, the US trade deficit rose 18.1 percent to $682bn, the highest since 2008, as the coronavirus threw global commerce into disarray and stymied then-President Donald Trump’s attempts to rebalance the US’s trade with the rest of the world.
Friday’s January trade data release is the last to include the period covering the Trump administration, which started a trade war with China and imposed steel and other tariffs on American allies that upended seven decades of US policy.
President Joe Biden and his team have so far tiptoed around Trump’s hardline trade policies. Biden hasn’t called off Trump’s trade war with China or suggested he would scale back the tariffs on imported steel and aluminium.
Biden’s pick for his administration’s top trade negotiator, Katherine Tai, has promised to make sure that US trade policy benefits US workers, not just corporations, and to engage more with US allies to counter an increasingly assertive China.
Tai is waiting to be confirmed by the full Senate. Fluent in Mandarin, she spent several years as the Office of the US Trade Representative’s head of China enforcement.
British EU exports collapse drastically .
Trade between the United Kingdom and the European Union has slumped dramatically in view of the final Brexit at the turn of the year. The UK economy is also suffering. © picture-alliance / La Voix Du Nord / M. Demeure Provided by Deutsche Welle As the country's statistics agency announced on Friday, the country's exports of goods to the EU fell by 41 percent in January compared to December 2020. Conversely, imports from the EU to Great Britain fell by 29 percent.