China shows progress on business resumption

BEIJING: Amid further containment of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) epidemic, China is powering ahead in returning to work and resuming business and production. The following are the latest facts and figures:
— The purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for China’s manufacturing sector re-entered the expansion zone by firming up to 52 in March from 35.7 in February, indicating a visible recovery in economic activities, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed.
— In the foreign trade sector, more than 76 percent of key firms had recovered over 70 percent of their production capacity as of Thursday, according to the Ministry of Commerce.
The PMI sub-indices for new export orders and imports in March picked up 17.7 percentage points and 16.5 percentage points, respectively, from the previous month’s figure.
— China’s major automobile firms have fully resumed work with their daily output gradually recovered to more than 75 percent of the same period last year, while dealers saw their orders return to over 65 percent of normal levels, said the National Development and Reform Commission.
— Total retail sales of China’s passenger car market reached 1.04 million units in March with a 300-percent rise from February, while over 90 percent of auto retail stores are up and running, data from the China Passenger Car Association showed Thursday.
— Construction has resumed on about 85 percent of the housing and urban infrastructure projects in China as of April 1, with about 158,700 housing and urban infrastructure projects across the country cranking up work, said the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development.
— As of April 1, 94.2 percent of enterprises with an annual revenue of over 20 million yuan (about 2.83 million U.S. dollars) had resumed work in China’s 169 national high-tech zones, 35 of which registered full resumption at all of their enterprises, according to the Ministry of Science and Technology.
— The resumption rates of large chain supermarkets, convenience stores and shopping malls all exceeded 95 percent, and 80 percent of catering industries have resumed work as of March 27, according to the Ministry of Commerce. – Agencies