BEIJING – China’s foreign trade grew 9.9 percent year-on-year during the first nine months of the year to reach 22.28 trillion yuan ($3.23 trillion), the General Administration of Customs said on Friday.
Imports grew 14.1 percent year-on-year during the period while exports rose 6.5 percent.
During the first three quarters, China registered a trade surplus of 1.44 trillion yuan, 28.3 percent less compared to the same period in 2017, the GAC said.
In this period, imports reached 10.42 trillion yuan, while exports touched 11.86 trillion yuan.
A significant rise was registered in the purchase of crude oil (5.9 percent), natural gas (34 percent), refined petroleum (9.8 percent) and copper (16.1 percent), while imports of iron ore and soya seeds registered slight declines of 1.6 percent and 2 percent, respectively.
In September, exports registered an unexpected growth of 14.5 percent year-on-year, much higher than forecasts and the 9.8 percent rise recorded in August.
Imports registered a drop of 14.3 percent year-on-year during the month, compared to the 19.9 percent recorded in August.
GAC spokesperson Li Kuiwen highlighted the solid foundations of China’s foreign trade and said that the direct and indirect impact of the trade frictions between the United States and China was still controllable.
“The encouraging performance of China’s foreign trade during the first three quarters of 2018 laid a solid foundation for the whole year’s trade perspective, pushed by the fast growth of private companies and diversified trade channels with more emerging economies, (...) such as Russia and Poland,” Li said.
Although effects of the trade war were not visible yet, Li warned that the trade growth for global goods will continue to face challenges due to trade frictions intensifying and instability caused by economic uncertainties worldwide.