The Hong Kong Trade Development Council has released its latest Export Index for the first quarter of 2017, which monitors the sentiment of Hong Kong traders and gauges near-term export prospects. The Export Index rose to 47.1, an increase of 13.4 from the fourth quarter of 2016, marking the biggest jump in recent years, although it remains below the watershed mark of 50.
Nicholas Kwan, director of research at the HKTDC, commented: “Despite the challenging global trade environment, export confidence is on the mend. We forecast export volume to increase 0.5 per cent and export value to remain flat in 2017.”
The toy sector was singled out as one of the categories which experienced a positive change in export sentiment , with the first quarter figure standing at 48.3.
When assessing the global territories in which export growth was anticipated, the United States saw the highest level of confidence in the first quarter (50.3), followed closely by Japan (49.8) and the Chinese mainland (49.5). However, at 48.7, the European Union was the lowest performer of the major markets.