U.S. Travel Goods Imports Significantly Down in First Five Months of 2020 as Trade Shifts Away from China

U.S. Travel Goods Imports Significantly Down in First Five Months of 2020 as Trade Shifts Away from China

According to new data published last week, U.S. travel goods imports (as described under HTS Heading 4202 – luggage, backpacks, flatgoods, handbags, totes, etc.) fell 20.6% (by volume) in the first five months of 2020. In addition to the obvious impact of COVID-19 on the industry, the latest import numbers show the accelerating trend away from China. In the first five months of 2020, U.S. travel goods imports from China fell 38.5%, with China accounting for only 55.8% of total U.S. travel goods imports. For comparison, in 2016, China accounted for 84.7% of all U.S. travel goods imports. Meanwhile, despite the pandemic, U.S. travel goods imports from #2 supplier Vietnam (28.7%), #3 Cambodia (52.1%), and #4 Burma (Myanmar) (230.3%) surged in the first five months of 2020. In fact, U.S. travel goods imports from Vietnam now account for 19.0% of all U.S. travel goods imports, followed by Cambodia at 8.2% of all U.S. travel goods imports. U.S. imports of travel goods account for approximately 99% of the U.S. travel goods market.