BEIJING-- China's foreign trade will continue to grow steadily in the second half of the year, but at a slower pace than last year, a senior official said Tuesday.
Jiang Yaoping, vice minister of commerce, made the remarks at a press conference, noting that the country's foreign trade sector is under great pressure in the wake of a weak global recovery caused by the spreading euro-zone sovereign debt crisis and rising global inflation.
Despite the impact of these factors, "the overall situation of the country's foreign trade is good," Jiang said during a briefing on foreign trade development and the 110th Canton Fair scheduled for October in the southern China city of Guangzhou.
Foreign trade has made positive progress over the past several months, largely due to faster trade growth in the country's central and western regions, Jiang said.
Foreign trade in central and western regions rose around 25 percent year-on-year from January to July, about 18.2 percentage points higher than growth in eastern regions, according to Jiang.
Meanwhile, Jiang expects the import market to expand faster than the export market in the second half of the year and the trade balance to further improve on the back of stronger domestic demand, favorable import policies and rising international commodities prices.
The ministry will closely monitor the development of both international and domestic economic situations while keeping its foreign trade policies consistent and steady as well as more focused, flexible and effective to ensure the sector's stable and sound development, Jiang added.
China's foreign trade totaled $2.02 trillion in the first seven months of this year. The trade surplus fell 8.7 percent year-on-year to $76.21 billion during the period, with imports surging 26.9 percent to hit $1.05 trillion and exports climbing 23.4 percent to $973.17 billion, data from the General Administration of Customs shows.Report by SHMET