Foreign trade in Putuo district, Zhoushan, Zhejiang province, increased 34.4 percent year-on-year in the first two months of the year despite the outbreak of COVID-19.
Statistics show that the district's imports and exports were valued at 8.9 billion yuan ($1.25 billion) during the period, with exports reaching 4.78 billion yuan, up 21 percent, and imports rising 54.4 percent to 4.12 billion yuan.
Oil trade grew significantly to 6.37 billion yuan, with imports and exports of oil valued at 3.91 billion yuan and 2.46 billion yuan, up 69.8 percent and 59.2 percent year-on-year, respectively.
Local authorities said the growth can be partly attributed to export rebates for bunker fuel used to refuel ships on international voyages that started being offered in January, and partly to a sharp drop in global oil prices.
The shipbuilding industry saw a 54 percent decline in ship exports, with a value of 690 million yuan, while exports related to ship-repair surged 271 percent to 1.17 billion yuan.
"We repaired 17 foreign vessels over the first two months of the year," said Wang Yuanhai, director of the outreach center of Zhoushan Wanbang Yongyue Shipbuilding Co.
The company exported 130 million yuan in goods during the period, up 122.3 percent year-on-year.