While China-EU trade reached US$713 billion, the trade with the United States saw a substantial decline.
The Statistical Office of the European Union (Eurostat) announced that China became the EU's main trade partner in 2020 despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
The EU's imports from China throughout 2020 grew by 5.6 percent year-on-year to US$465 billion, and exports grew by 2.2 percent to US$246 billion.
At the same time, the trade in goods with the U.S., which had topped the EU's trade partners list until early 2020, saw a substantial decline in both ways.
The EU also witnessed higher trade volume with the rest of the world in Dec. 2020, up by US$8 billion from the same month in 2019, a first year-on-year increase since it was hit by the pandemic.
On 2/1, #Qingdao Municipal Government Press Office released the city's economic indicators in 2020. Qingdao's GDP reached 1,240.56 billion yuan, an increase of 3.7% over the previous year, ranked the 13th nationwide, right after Ningbo and followed by Wuxi, Changsha. #China #GDP pic.twitter.com/K9BYg9LDoq— Qingdao Today (@QingdaoToday) February 2, 2021
The single market suffered a decrease of 9.4 percent in exports of goods and an 11.6 percent decrease in imports in 2020. With industries largely affected by the containment measures last year, energy recorded by far the sharpest drop among all sectors, followed by food and drink, raw materials, and chemicals.
The Eurostat's information release on Monday coincided with China's data published in mid-January, which showed the trade with the EU grew by 5.3 percent to US$730 billion in 2020.
While China's total goods imports and exports expanded 1.9 percent year on year to US$5 trillion in 2020, hitting a record high, the surge in trade with the EU was more than double the average growth rate.
The result speaks for "the strong resilience and importance of China-EU economic and trade cooperation," said Zhang Ming, head of the Chinese Mission to the EU.