Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Wal-Mart and US-China trade

WSJ. Wal-Mart by itself accounts for more than 10% of U.S. imports from China... Wal-Mart is termed China's eighth-largest trading partner by the government-controlled mainland media and would place ahead of Russia and the United Kingdom on the top-10 list. Other published reports indicate Wal-Mart would be the fifth-largest importer of Chinese manufactured items if it were considered as a nation.

Since Wal-Mart doesn't produce anything for export, the large-scale importing contributes to the gap in U.S. trade. The U.S. is expected to run up a total trade deficit of more than $600 billion in 2004, with the deficit in its bilateral trade with China contributing $150 billion. Thanks mainly to the shortfall in merchandise trade, the U.S. current-account deficit is approaching 6% of gross national product.

According to Amy Wyatt, a spokeswoman for the Bentonville, Ark., retailer, Wal-Mart imported $15 billion in goods from China in the fiscal year that ended Jan. 31, 2004. About $7.5 billion were directly imported by Wal-Mart, the other $7.5 billion came indirectly through suppliers. In the same period, Wal-Mart's total net sales reached $256 billion, with roughly $209 billion coming from U.S. operations.

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