Shanghai GDP down 2.6% in first six months

Huang Yixuan
Statistics bureau figures show that although posting a decline from a year earlier, the drop has narrowed compared with the 6.7 percent year-on-year retreat in the first quarter.
Huang Yixuan

Shanghai gross domestic product reached 1.74 trillion yuan (US$248 billion) in the first half of 2020, down 2.6 percent from the same period last year, data from the statistics bureau showed on Thursday.

Although posting a decline in the six-month period from a year earlier, the drop has narrowed compared with the 6.7 percent year-on-year retreat in the first quarter, with the efforts made by the city to stabilize the economy and promote resumption of work after the COVID-19 outbreak.

Among them, the added value in the primary sector was 3.39 billion yuan in January-June, down 2.6 percent from the same period last year; value-added output in the second sector fell 8.2 percent from a year earlier to 425.68 billion yuan, but the drop was 9.9 percentage points slower than the first quarter; while that in the tertiary sector totalled 1.31 trillion yuan, a decline of 0.6 percent year on year, which was 2.1 percentage points slower than in January-March.

The value-added output in the three sectors of the economy accounted for 0.2 percent, 24.5 percent and 75.3 percent, respectively, of the city's overall GDP.

In the first half of the year, the tertiary sector saw a steady recovery, with some industries growing strongly against the general trend, the bureau said.

Industries relying on the Internet, digitalization and scientific and technological innovation developed rapidly during the period. The information transmission, software and information technology service industry, the financial, health and social work sectors have all bucked the trend, posting year-on-year growth of 13.5 percent, 7.4 percent and 8 percent, respectively.

The sectors hardest hit by the pandemic have also made a steady recovery. In the first half, the value added of the wholesale and retail trade declined by 9.4 percent year on year, which narrowed 10.1 percentage points from the first quarter. Added value in the transport, warehousing and postal services sector fell 14 percent from a year earlier but was 4.5 percentage points slower than the drop in January-March. That in the real estate industry retreated 0.8 percent in the first six months, compared with the 10.3 percent slump in the first quarter.

Since the second quarter, the city's industrial production has achieved growth for three consecutive months.

In the first half, the city's total industrial output of enterprises above the designated size reached 1.5 trillion yuan, down 6.3 percent from the same period last year but 11.1 percentage points narrower than the drop in the first quarter. 

Among them, the industrial output of the six key industries fell by 3.9 percent year on year, of which the electronic and information products manufacturing industry rose 7.2 percent and the biomedical manufacturing sector increased by 0.5 percent, while the automobile manufacturing industry was down 12.3 percent, the petrochemical and fine chemical manufacturing industry fell by 6 percent, the fine steel manufacturing industry shed 4.1 percent, and the complete equipment manufacturing sector retreated 5.4 percent.

Of note, the strategic emerging industrial sector in the city contributed 597.62 billion yuan to the city's GDP in the first six months, up 5.5 percent over the same period last year. Among them, output of new-energy vehicles surged 95.7 percent, that of new energy increased 22.8 percent and new generation information technology rose 10.5 percent. Production of smartphones, laptops and integrated circuits grew 32.7 percent, 29.5 percent and 20.2 percent, respectively.

Fixed-asset investment also jumped 6.7 percent in the first half from a year earlier, among which industrial investment soared 15 percent, investment in the real estate sector rose 7 percent, and FAI in infrastructure edged up 2.2 percent.

Retail sales of consumer products, meanwhile, fell 11.2 percent in the city to 694.68 billion yuan, compared with the 20.4 percent decline in the first quarter.

Shanghai's economy has been gradually overcoming the adverse impact of the pandemic, with economic operations seeing a trend of steady recovery, further showing the resilience and vitality of the city's economic growth, the bureau said.

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