BEIJING--China's industrial companies posted an increase in 2020 profits, thanks to Beijing's move to resume production quickly and resilient external demand amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Industrial profit rose 4.1% in 2020, reversing 2019's 3.3% decline, said the National Bureau of Statistics Wednesday.
Production and business ground to a near halt in the first quarter but profitability for China's industrial firms improved quickly from the second quarter as the government moved to restore economic activity as the pandemic was controlled within its borders.
More than 60% of industrial companies surveyed by the statistics bureau posted higher profits last year, with manufacturers contributing the largest boost, said the bureau.
The statistics bureau also said tax and fee cuts, rent exemptions and other government measures to support businesses hit hard by the coronavirus helped industrial firms lower their operating costs last year.
State-owned industrial companies reported a 2.9% decline in profits last year, while profits of private and foreign industrial firms rose 3.1% and 7.0%, respectively, according to the official data.
In December, industrial profit rose 20.1% compared with the same period a year earlier, accelerating from November's 15.5% surge.