China’s trade surplus swells in April

| May 10, 2011 | 0 Comments

The Customs Agency has today reported a rise in China’s exports, growing by 29.9% in April on an annual basis to $155.7 billion.

However, exports outperformed imports, which grew by 21.8% on an annual basis in April to $144.3 billion.

As a result, the politically sensitive trade surplus last month swelled to $11.4 billion (£6.9 billion) – almost four times more than the $3 billion forecast by analysts.

The figures will continue to increase tension among the US as the two countries discuss currency issues.

China has been under pressure to revalue its currency and the US has previously expressed dissatisfaction that China is keeping the value of the yuan low to help its exporters at the expense of overseas competitors.

Trade groups have argued that the yuan, also referred to as the renminbi, is kept up to 40% below what its value should be against the US dollar.

Since last June when Beijing loosened the currency peg, the yuan has strengthened 5% against the dollar.

China has previously been accused of being a currency manipulator but Beijing has said keeping the yuan stable is “an important contribution” to global recovery and a sudden change in policy could negatively impact on the country’s export sector.

According to Brian Jackson from Royal Bank of Canada in Hong Kong, today’s figures demonstrate that Chinese exporters “continue to benefit from a supportive exchange rate.”

Talks are currently taking place between the two nations in Washington DC as they endeavour to reach an agreement over currency issues.

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