The potential financial impact of the COVID-19 virus was made clear by mid-March when the U.S. stock market experienced multiple near-meltdowns. Freefalling stocks were stopped only by fail-safe measures built into the trading system after a massive 1988 single-day S&P 500 Index drop that kicked off a significant economic recession. 

Trade between China and the U.S. has been severely impacted as the virus continues to affect the economies of both nations. Even after a vaccine is finally developed and life returns to a new kind of normal, analysts expect it will take years for the global economy to recover

U.S-China trade may never function the same as it did before the virus spread around the world, according to some economists.

Pre-Coronavirus China-U.S. Trade

China and the West have been trading goods for centuries, from Asian silk in the second century BCE to the endless stream of consumer goods and industrial products coming over on barges today. 

China’s participation in global trade throughout modern history has been sporadic, but the country solidified its position as a major economic powerhouse after President Bill Clinton signed the U.S-China Relations Act of 2000. This China Trade bill paved the way for China to join the World Trade Organization, a shift in international relations that had an enormous impact on trade for both nations. 

Between 1980 and 2004, U.S.-China trade rose from $5 billion to $231 billion. By 2006, China had surpassed Mexico as the U.S.’s second-biggest trade partner after Canada. 

President Trump has focused much of his early presidency on establishing a more robust trading position with China. He and key members of his administration have engaged the country in a years-long trade war, enforcing tariffs on imported goods. 

And then came Corona. 

The Coronavirus Impact on Trade

As the COVID-19 virus began its march across Asia in late 2019, financial experts began to sound the warning: China, they claimed, was about to experience an unprecedented downturn

Ultimately, the expectation of an economic “downturn” proved an understatement. The coronavirus impact on Chinese trade has hit hard and fast. 

China is experiencing a kind of financial whiplash historians will write about in the history books of tomorrow. An overrun medical system, a halting of most industry and commerce, and a total stoppage of its international trade lines have all but shut down the typically hectic pace of life and business in China. 

By early 2020, some economists began to speculate that the pandemic will have more of an impact on U.S.-China trade than President Trump’s signature trade war. 

As trade expert and economist Stefan Legge relayed in an NBC News interview, “The spread of the virus is primarily a massive supply shock to the Chinese economy. Production across the country is severely affected by closed factories.” Legge pointed to issues on the demand side as well, citing lower consumption and less private-sector investment. 

Beijing’s weakened stance could signal an opportunity for the U.S. to negotiate new trading terms. Still, this process will undoubtedly take a backseat as both countries work to recover from the aftermath of COVID-19. 

Impact on the Chinese Wire and Cable Supply Chain 

There are precious few exceptions to the list of goods China is currently unable to produce or trade. Once the country reopens trade and resumes exports, it will take a great deal of time to replenish stocks. When products do begin shipping from China again, prices will no doubt reflect the country’s need to bolster its economy through better margins. 

The world has become reliant on China’s seemingly endless stream of cheap consumer and industrial products, but that ship, as it were, may have sailed for good. 

There is no reason to believe Chinese wire or Chinese cable will be exempt from the impact of the financial crisis. Vendors and suppliers in the U.S. will likely turn toward other sources, including American made cable. 

In some ways, China’s misfortune could allow for a market adjustment that has been a long time coming. The International Trade Commission (ITC) announced in late 2019 that U.S. industry was “materially injured” by below-cost imports of aluminum wire and cable from China. 

The ITC announcement followed news of the U.S. Commerce Department’s investigation and determination that Chinese exporters had sold aluminum wire and cable at less than fair value in the U.S.—to the tune of $115 million in 2018 alone. 

A Way Forward with American Made Wire and Cable

New York-based Remee Wire and Cable stands in stark contrast to Chinese exporters. Founded in 1972 by Al Muhlrad following his graduation from the University of New Haven, Remee has grown into a leading U.S. manufacturer of electronic wire and cable, including fiber optic loose tube and tight buffered cables.

Nearly five decades later, the Muhlrad family continues to manage Remee with the same consistent values, traditions, and integrity that has characterized the Remee brand name from the start. 

Remee has uniquely positioned itself to offer customization of copper and fiber optic cable, coupled with personalized service, that just can’t be equaled among suppliers from the far reaches of the globe. 

The company prides itself on:

  • Custom-engineered cable solutions
  • A vast selection of standard American-made wire and cable
  • Complex cable solutions, including plenum, composites, hybrids, and Siamese constructions
  • Channel choices that allow customers to choose how they obtain products from a variety of sales channel partnerships

Remee employs over 150 local employees and manufactures, markets, and engineers its innovative products at its Florida, New York headquarters. The company prides itself on providing quality cable and wire products with outstanding customer service, expert technical support, and American pride. 

Best of all, Remee cable and wire products will never become a pawn in an international trade war. It’s impossible to predict the challenges that will affect the world in the future. What is for certain is that Remee will continue producing the quality cabling that has earned the trust of companies across the country. 

Learn more about how Remee is engineering American made products with you in mind.