Russia-China Trade Up 20.8% in 2017

Russia-China Trade Up 20.8% in 2017

China's exports to North Korea rose 8.3% in 2017 from a year earlier, at $3.34 billion, official data showed Friday.

"I think the [December] slowdown is really mild - mostly in line with seasonality", said Victor You, an analyst with CLSA in Hong Kong, who tracks China's iron ore, coal, copper and copper concentrate imports, as well as its exports of steel products and aluminum.

China's imports from North Korea plunged in December to their lowest level in dollar terms since at least the start of 2014, with trade curbed by United Nations sanctions aimed at persuading North Korea to abandon its ballistic missile and nuclear weapons programmes.

The rush to export over the last two months of 2017 was spurred by additional quotas from the government.

The politically volatile global trade surplus stood at $422.5 billion, down from $486 billion in 2016.

Yuan-denominated imports rose 18.7 percent a year ago, which produced a trade surplus of 2.87 trillion yuan.

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As North Korea's biggest trading partner and main source of aid, China holds influence over the pariah state.

Chinese customs will formally release data for trade with North Korea in the second half of the month, along with a breakdown by product.

Full-year shipments rose 5 percent to a record high of 1.075 billion tonnes, exceeding 1 billion tonnes for a second year. China's December trade surplus with the US was $25.55 billion, compared to $27.87 billion in November.

Commenting on the trade issue, Huang Songping (黃頌平), spokesman of the General Administration of Customs, said that there is hope for deeper cross-strait cooperation, with trade becoming stronger this year as long as factors that dampen relations between the two sides can be eliminated.

Trump will have opportunities to impose tariffs on a range of Chinese goods.

However, Kujis of Oxford Economics believes import growth will only soften moderately this year, as the Chinese government has been careful not to let its tightening measures deal blows to the economy.