State-owned enterprises were a key driver behind the resoundingly strong import figures for the first two months, having jumped 51.7% from a year ago to 466.7 billion yuan (US$67.6 billion). Their craving for iron ore and crude oil, along with other basic industrial materials pushed the import figures to the best start in a year since 2011. Chinese imports jumped 44.7% from a year ago in February in yuan terms, going another notch higher from January’s 25.3% gain. The actual import growth beat economists expectations of a 23.1% rise, according to a Bloomberg survey. For the first two months of 2017, total imports grew 34.2%. SOEs collectively account for a massive 26% share of overall import cargo by value, versus 23% during the same period a year ago. On the other hand, foreign-owned companies fared the worst, reporting a sub-par gain in overall imports of only 24.1%.