China likely to demand more cereal from Canada: new report

Cereals rank as the third fastest growing import products in China, with an CAGR of 35%. Pic: iStock/Ruskpp

The latest report from The Conference Board of Canada showed that commodities and consumer goods, such as cereals and nuts, will likely to see rising demand from China in coming years. 

The growing consumption of these products is supported by “stable employment prospects and rising income [in China],” the report by the not-for-profit research organization said.

“In particular, the rise of the Chinese middle class will increase demand for agricultural products and many quality processed food items.”

In 2016, Canada joined the Chinese-led Asian infrastructure bank and launched exploratory talks toward a Canada-China free trade agreement.

The Conference Board said Canada’s economy and living standards have benefited from China’s “seemingly insatiable demand for natural resources over the past decade.

“The value of exports to China has grown at a double-digit pace from 2006 to 2015, lifting China to rank second among Canada’s export markets. China’s economic growth is now easing and the economy is undergoing structural changes. Yet, the country continues to be one of the fastest-growing economies in the world.”

Fast growing imports

According to data, the five largest categories of Canadian goods exported to China are all natural resources-based, and account for almost 50% of Canadian merchandise exports to China.

Grains, oil seeds and other oleaginous fruits account for 14.3% of the share share, making it the second largest exported segment. In 2015 alone, this segment was worth $2,262m.

Cereals were valued at $496m during the same period, making up 3.1% of the exported goods, the report shows.

Cereals also rank as the third fastest growing import products in China, with an CAGR of 35%; followed by milling products, malt, starches, inulin (type of dietary fibers) and wheat gluten, which together saw a 27% annual growth rate on average between 2013 to 2015.

Sugar and sugar confectionery imports, however, only experienced 1% growth during the same period, said the report.

“Despite the historically resource-intensive trade between Canada and China, trade in services between both countries is trending up at a phenomenal pace – increasing by more than 50% from 2007 to 2014,” the Conference Board said.

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