China January exports rise 7.9 percent, beating forecasts

China Exports Surge Ahead of Potential Challenge From Trump

The country's trade surplus widened last month to 354.53 billion yuan ($51.62 billion) from 275.42 billion yuan in December.

The Lunar New Year changes every year; however, it usually comes on the first two calendar months, resulting in volatility in China's trade data for the period.

"The rebound of trade data was partly due to the low base of January past year", said Deng Haiqing, chief economist with JZ Securities.

Customs is due to release updated data for trade on February 23.

Exports rose to $182.8 billion in January, Customs said, beating the 3.2 percent forecast in a Bloomberg News survey of economists and a reversal from December's 6.1 percent plunge. Exports had been forecast to grow 3.1% according to a median estimate of 11 economists polled by The Wall Street Journal.

Analysts were expecting China's trade surplus to have risen to $47.90 billion in January, versus December's $40.71 billion, with growing attention on its large trade surplus with the United States as new U.S. President Donald Trump ramps up his protectionist rhetoric.

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Copper concentrate and ore imports rose 6.8 percent from a year earlier to 1.25 million tonnes. Trump's tough talk of imposing punitive tariffs on Chinese goods worries USA exporters " The exports were largely driven up by the strong economic recovery in the United States", Hong Hao, chief strategist at BOCOM International in Hong Kong, said. "The exports outlook for China is good, except for the potential risk of a Sino-US trade war".

China's imports from the US rose 23.4 percent.

Overall, with the value of exports outpacing imports, the trade surplus expanded by 25 per cent to $US51.4 billion, a handy infusion of cash given ongoing concerns about falling foreign exchange reserves. -China trade and political ties is likely to weigh on confidence of exporters and investors worldwide.

Export from China to Russian Federation rose 29.5% to $3.4 bln.

In 2016, the trade turnover between Russian Federation and China increased by 2.2 percent, with the annual figure standing at $69.525 billion.

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