China's trade growth accelerates

Workers operate machinery on the assembly line at a Lyric Robert factory operated by Guangdong Li Yuanheng Intelligent Automation Co. in Huizhou Guangdong province China on Monday

China's goods trade volume rose 16.6 percent to 20.29 trillion yuan (3.08 trillion US dollars) in the first three quarters of this year, official data showed Friday. The rise beat the poll's forecast for a 15% gain. The exports rose 8.5 percent year on year to 458.23 billion yuan, almost half of the country's total service exports.

Export growth was unexpectedly strong in the first half of the year, a positive sign for Chinese leaders who want to avoid job losses in trade-related industries as they try to nurture consumer-led economic growth.

As result, the trade surplus totaled USD28.47 billion in September versus the expected level of USD38.0 billion.

Trade surplus shrank 17.7 percent to 2.03 trillion yuan in the same period.

Exports increased 8.1% in September compared with the same period a year earlier, following 5.5% growth in August, the General Administration of Customs said Friday.

The politically volatile surplus with the United States was $28.1 billion.

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That could aggravate President Donald Trump's frequent complaints that the trade balance between the two nations hurts the USA economy.

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross recently pressed China on the "need to rebalance bilateral trade and investment relations" and urged it to take "meaningful action" on trade issues.

China's service imports continued to substantially outvalue exports in the first eight months due to strong domestic demand.

The surplus with the 28-nation European Union, China's biggest trading partner, was $9.2 billion.

China is also in the midst of its toughest environmental crackdown ever, ordering many mills, chemical plants and coal companies to sharply reduce output or close in coming months to reduce the country's notoriously thick winter smog.

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