Which city in China has the most trade?

Which city in China has the most trade?

China’s rise as a trading economy is driven by a vast manufacturing network spread across cities across the country.

According to the list of China’s top 100 foreign trade cities in 2022 released by the “China Customs” magazine of the General Administration of Customs, the top five are Shenzhen, Shanghai, Suzhou, Ningbo, and Guangzhou. This is basically the general pattern for at least the past five years.


Shenzhen Customs announced on the same day that in the first 11 months of 2023, Shenzhen’s import and export totaled 3.51 trillion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 6.3%, ranking first among the top ten foreign trade cities in the country;

Known as China’s “Silicon Valley,” Shenzhen is a bustling metropolis in Guangdong Province known for its electronics manufacturing industry. In recent years, Shenzhen has dominated the export market with a variety of electronic products, including smartphones, tablets and consumer electronics. Looking ahead to 2023, Shenzhen is expected to maintain its dominant position in the electronics industry, with innovations in 5G technology, artificial intelligence and smart devices driving export growth.


According to statistical data released by Shanghai Customs on December 19, 2023, in the first 11 months of 2023, Shanghai’s total import and export value was 3.86 trillion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 1.2%, a record high, and ranked first in the country. Among them, exports were 1.59 trillion yuan, an increase of 1.7%; imports were 2.27 trillion yuan, an increase of 0.8%.

As China’s largest city and global financial center, Shanghai plays a pivotal role in China’s export landscape. Located along the Yangtze River Delta, Shanghai has an advantageous geographical location and is a major port city and transportation hub, promoting domestic and foreign trade flows. It is expected that by 2023, Shanghai’s exports in industries such as machinery, auto parts and pharmaceuticals will continue to grow, driven by investment in advanced manufacturing and technology.

In the first 11 months of 2023, Shanghai exported 1.1 trillion yuan of mechanical and electrical products, an increase of 3.5%, accounting for 69.5% of the total export value in the same period. During the same period, the export of electric passenger vehicles was 115.09 billion yuan, an increase of 45.3%; the export of lithium batteries was 35.82 billion yuan, an increase of 56.5%; the export of solar cells was 8.4 billion yuan, an increase of 9.1%.


Suzhou is located in Jiangsu Province and is known for its historical significance and modern manufacturing capabilities. The city’s well-developed industrial parks and strategic location make it a preferred destination for foreign investment and export-oriented industries. By 2023, Suzhou will lead the export of precision machinery, high-tech electronics and advanced materials with its skilled workforce and strong supply chain network.

The mobile phone industry is the main factor driving the growth of Suzhou’s foreign trade. From January to November, the city exported 189.65 billion yuan of mobile phones, an increase of 67.9%, boosting the city’s exports by 5.4 percentage points. During the same period, exports of auto parts and accessories increased by 20.5%, and exports of household appliances increased by 5.9%.


Located in Zhejiang Province, Ningbo is a coastal city known for its vibrant seaport and booming manufacturing industry. The city’s proximity to Shanghai and convenient air routes make it an ideal location for export-oriented industries.

Relying on its strong manufacturing base and infrastructure advantages, Ningbo has seen significant growth in the export of high-tech products. In the first 11 months of 2023, exports reached 60.4 billion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 9.1%. Among them, the export volume of major products such as electronic technology, computer-related technology, materials technology, and optoelectronic technology all achieved double-digit growth year-on-year.


Guangzhou, the capital of Guangdong Province, is a vibrant city with a long history and a booming manufacturing industry. The city’s strategic position in the Pearl River Delta region and well-established industrial clusters give it a prominent position in export-oriented industries.

In the first three quarters of 2023, Guangzhou’s exports of mechanical and electrical products increased by 9.9%, accounting for 46.5% of total export value; imports and exports with countries co-building the “Belt and Road” increased by 16.4% year-on-year, and imports and exports with the Middle East and Africa increased by 19.4% year-on-year respectively. % and 32.4%. It is learned from relevant departments that this momentum will continue in October and November 2023.

Shenzhen, Shanghai, Suzhou, Ningbo and Guangzhou are important cities in China driving manufacturing and export growth. Each city has unique advantages, ranging from technological innovation to strategic logistics, making it a key player in shaping China’s export landscape in 2023 and beyond. As these cities continue to develop and adapt to global market trends, they will continue to make important contributions to China’s economic development and international trade.

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