China has surpassed Japan as the world’s leading vehicle exporter.
China claims to have surpassed Japan as the world’s largest auto exporter in the first three months of the year.
According to official numbers released last week, China shipped 1.07 million vehicles during the period, a 58% increase over the first quarter of 2022.
At the same time, Japan’s automobile exports stood at 954,185, up 6% from the previous year.
Demand for electric vehicles and shipments to Russia bolstered China’s exports.
China surpassed Germany to become the world’s second largest automobile exporter last year.
China shipped 3.2 million vehicles in 2022, compared to Germany’s 2.6 million vehicle exports, according to China’s General Administration of Customs.
The transition away from fossil fuels has aided the expansion of China’s automobile sector.
Exports of new energy vehicles (NEVs), which include electric vehicles, increased by more than 90% in the first quarter compared to the previous year.
SAIC, the owner of the MG brand, and BYD, which is sponsored by senior US investor Warren Buffett, are among China’s leading NEV exporters.
Elon Musk’s electric car company has a large manufacturing base in Shanghai and exports to Japan and Europe.
Tesla’s ‘Gigafactory’ can already produce 1.25 million vehicles per year, and the company plans to expand capacity further.
It began producing Model Y sport utility cars for export to Canada last month.
China’s exports to Russia have also increased since the commencement of the Ukraine crisis, when Western countries slapped trade restrictions on Moscow.
Last year, Chinese automakers such as Geely, Chery, and Great Wall saw their market share in Russia increase as rivals such as Volkswagen and Toyota left the country following Ukraine’s incursion.