China’s Foreign Trade Surplus Shrinks for First Four Months of 2018


The latest official data points to robust growth in China’s foreign trade during the period from January to April of 2018, with the pace of import expansion greatly exceeding that of exports.

Figures from the General Administration of Customs indicate that China’s foreign goods trade reached 9.11 trillion yuan for the first four months of the year, marking a year-on-year increase of 8.9%.

Exports were 4.81 trillion yuan, for a rise of 6.4%, while imports were 4.3 trillion yuan, for an increase of 11.7%.

China’s trade surplus for the period was 506.24 billion yuan, for a narrowing of 24.1%.

For the month of April alone China’s foreign goods trade was worth 2.36 trillion yuan, for a YoY rise of 7.2%.

Imports were worth 1.27 trillion yuan in April, for an increase of 3.7%, while imports were 1.09 trillion yuan, for a rise of 11.6%.

The trade surplus for the month of April was 182.8 billion yuan, marking a contraction of 27%.

China’s trade with all regions of the world has seen an increase since the start of 2018, in particular with respect to Belt and Road nations.

For the first four months of the year Sino-European trade was worth 1.34 trillion yuan, for a rise of 8.3%, accounting for 14.7% of all of China’s foreign trade.

Trade with the US was worth 1.24 trillion yuan, for an increase of 5.9%, accounting for 13.6% of all Chinese foreign trade.

Trade with ASEAN nations was worth 1.17 trillion yuan, for an increase of 12.6%, accounting for 12.9% of total trade, while trade with Japan was worth 664.13 billion yuan, for a rise of 3.8%, accounting for 7.3% of total trade.

During the same period China’s total trade with Belt and Road participating nations was worth 2.51 trillion yuan, of an increase of 11.6%, 2.7 percentage points ahead of overall trade growth.