India-China trade volume may seemingly cross $100 billion this year as the total has already hit $90.37 billion in the first nine months—an increase of 49.3 per cent year-on-year (YoY)—despite a chill in bilateral ties due to the ongoing military standoff between the two countries in eastern Ladakh.

China’s total imports and exports expanded by 22.7 per cent year on year to 28.33 trillion yuan (about $4.38 trillion) in the first three quarters of 2021, official data showed. The figure is a rise of 23.4 per cent from the pre-epidemic level in 2019, according to China’s General Administration of Customs.

China’s exports to India went up to $68.46 billion—up by 51.7 per cent YoY—apparently aided by massive imports of urgent supplies, like oxygen concentrators, when India was in the grip of the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in April and May this year, a new agency reported.

Indian exports to China totalled $21.91 billion, registering a noteworthy increase of 42.5 per cent. However, from India’s point of view the trade deficit, which remained a concern over the years, reached $46.55 billion and is expected to climb further by the year end.