Markets

China's trade surplus widens in June as imports drop

China's trade surplus widens in June as imports drop

China's trade surplus with the United States, which is at the centre of the tariff tussle, widened to a record monthly high of $28.97 billion, up from $24.58 billion in May, according to Reuters calculations based on official data going back to 2008.

As the US-China trade war escalates, the latest trade numbers appear to back Washington's biggest gripe with Beijing.

June exports to the United States grew faster than China's total with the world, expanding by 13.6 per cent over a year ago in possible sign exporters were rushing to fill orders. That leaves about $80 billion for penalty tariffs after Beijing's previous increases either imposed or threatened on a total of $50 billion of US goods are counted.

The difference between China's exports to the U.S. and its imports from the world's largest economy expanded to a monthly high of $29bn (£22bn), up from $24.6bn in May.

Trump's latest tariffs threat hammered global markets, while there are worries that his decision to pick fights with other key allies including Canada and the European Union could fuel an all-out global trade war.

"Looking ahead, export growth will cool in the coming months as USA tariffs start to bite alongside a broader softening in global demand", Capital Economics analyst Julian Evans-Pritchard said in a statement.

"This trade dispute will definitely have an impact on China-US trade and will have a very negative impact on global trade", a Chinese customs administration spokesman said today.




Growth in imports for June showed a moderate slowdown from May, official data showed on Friday.

After a strong start to the year, growth in China's exports has moderated recently, and is expected to face more pressure from the initial round of USA tariffs.

Investors fear a prolonged trade battle with the United States could harm business confidence and investment, disrupting global supply chains and harming growth in China and the rest of the world. They said as a effect figures for July and August were likely to show a decline in exports to the US.

But, he said, China has another option - Beijing could reduce the impact of USA tariffs on exporters by devaluing the yuan to make its goods cheaper for American consumers.

The spiraling battle between Beijing and Washington shows no signs of cooling down.

The United States has started a trade war and China will defend itself, Chinese vice-minister of commerce Wang Shouwen said on Thursday (July 12), urging the United States to "take the gun" of tariffs away to smooth the way for talks.

In the first half of the year, Chinese exports to the USA increased 13.6 percent as compared to the same period in 2017, while imports from the US only rose 11.8 percent.


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