Chinese exports remain strong, trade surplus exceeds $ 80 billion

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BEIJING (AP) – Chinese exports remained strong in October, a positive sign for an economy trying to cope with power shortages and COVID-19 outbreaks.

The country’s customs agency said on Sunday that exports totaled $ 300.2 billion, up 27.1% from a year ago. This was down from a 28.1% increase in September, but still healthy. Imports totaled $ 215.7 billion, up 20.6%.

Exports and imports are much higher than a year ago when much of the world was gripped by the COVID-19 pandemic, but there are widespread concerns that economic headwinds are slowing growth. The world’s second-largest economy grew 4.9% in the three months ending September, up from 7.9% in the previous quarter.

China’s trade surplus in October was $ 84.5 billion, up from $ 66.8 billion the month before, the customs agency said. The surplus with the United States edged down to $ 40.7 billion from $ 42 billion in September. With the EU, it was $ 25.9 billion.

China and the United States are mired in a trade war that dates back to the administration of former President Donald Trump. The United States imposed tariffs on Chinese products and China retaliated by imposing tariffs on American products. U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai said last month she plans to have frank discussions with her Chinese counterparts over their differences.

China’s economy has been rocked by strict government restrictions related to COVID-19, which depressed domestic travel and consumer demand, and power shortages which have lowered factory output. Regulators are also cracking down on debt developers, slowing the housing market.

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