China April exports rise 8.0 percent, missing forecasts

Posted May 08, 2017

Chinese shipments to the USA climbed 11.7 per cent, easing from the 19.7 per cent gain the prior month, while exports to the European Union increased 4 per cent. - AFP picSHANGHAI, May 8 - China's overseas shipments held up in April amid recovering global demand.

Exports increased 8.0% in April from a year earlier, following 16.4% growth in March, the General Administration of Customs said Monday.

Imports rose 11.9 percent to $142 billion, slowing from 20.4 percent growth the previous month. Economists had forecast the surplus to increase to USD35.2 billion from USD23.9 billion in March.

China's politically sensitive global trade surplus came in at $38 billion, up from $23.9 billion in March.

"Compared to early 2016, when China's trade with the rest of the world contracted, the overall picture remains positive", said Tom Orlik, Bloomberg economist.

China's large surplus with the US has been a focus of President Donald Trump, who pressed Chinese President Xi Jinping to help reduce the gap. At the same time, China's imports from Russian Federation increased by 30.1 percent to $13.08 billion, the report adds. "Imports will reflect that trend first".

During the first four months, trade with the European Union gained 15.5 percent year on year to 1.24 trillion yuan, accounting for 14.8 percent of the total.

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He expected purchases to pick up from July after Beijing grants the second batch of quotas, although China has started to limit how much crude oil can be imported by private refiners.

April's level was still up 5.5 percent from a year ago.

Foreign trade is expected to face a better environment in 2017 compared with the past two years, the commerce ministry report said.

Last month, Trump launched a trade probe against China and other exporters of cheap steel into the USA market.

Mr Trump has urged his...

A relatively buoyant outlook for the global economy should also help exports hold up well, although imports were likely to weaken further as Beijing continued to tighten policy.