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China exports jump in May but imports slow

By AFP

June 7, 2024 09:59 AM


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China's exports accelerated far more than expected in May but imports slowed, official figures showed Friday, in further evidence of an uneven recovery for the world's number two economy.

Overseas shipments surged 7.6 percent on-year in dollar terms, the General Administration of Customs said -- much better than April's 1.5 percent and also beating the 5.7 percent forecast in a Bloomberg survey of analysts.

Exports have historically served as an important economic engine in China, with overseas sales performance having a direct impact on employment for thousands of companies.

The latest figures represent a second consecutive month of growth, following a brief year-on-year decline of 7.5 percent in March.

But various headwinds facing China's trade outlook remain, with combined exports and imports with the United States down 1.4 percent in May amid continuing geopolitical spats between the superpowers.

Trade between China and Russia grew 2.9 percent last month, though Chinese exports to its neighbour fell for the first time since 2020.

Beijing and Moscow have strengthened economic and political ties since Russia's invasion of Ukraine in 2022 -- a decision that China has not condemned.

China's total imports grew 1.8 percent on-year in May, the data showed, down from the 8.4 percent surge recorded in April.

A highly anticipated economic recovery in China following the scrapping of tight pandemic restrictions in late 2022 has been less robust than expected.

Beijing policymakers now face an uncertain economic situation, as a debt crisis in the real estate sector and high youth unemployment threaten to weigh down consumer confidence.

The latest jump in exports brought China's trade surplus to $82.6 billion, from $72.4 billion in April.


AFP


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