Monday, 12 November, 2018

China's May trade surplus with U.S

China's May trade surplus with U.S China's May trade surplus with U.S
Patty Aguilar | 10 June, 2018, 22:21

To implement the consensus reached in Washington, Chinese and U.S. economic and trade teams held candid and in-depth consultations in Beijing from June 2-3 and made positive and concrete progress in many areas.

China maintained solid export growth of 12.6 percent in May, slightly slower than in April, but still providing good news for Beijing's policymakers as they deal with tough trade negotiations with Washington.

The Chinese Commerce ministry reiterated China's willingness to import more from the U.S., but he did not offer details.

China reiterated that it is willing to expand imports from the US if the world's two largest economies "meet half-way" in trade negotiations.

China's Commerce Ministry says that the country does not want trade frictions with the U.S. to escalate, and that some specific progress was made in the latest round of talks last weekend, Reuters reports.

Despite three rounds of trade talks, tension between Washington and Beijing has increased.

"The particularly strong May figures are due to uncertainties from the trade negotiations", said Iris Pang, an economist at ING Groep NV in Hong Kong and the only accurate forecaster of May import growth in a Bloomberg survey.

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Customs data showed the surplus grew 11.7 percent on-year to $24.6 billion in May, with exports to the United States rising by about 12 percent and imports up 11 percent.

Shortly after the end of the exemption, the European Union initiated a dispute with the United States at the WTO, and announced Wednesday the start of applying rebalancing duties on USA products in July, as part of the "three-pronged response".

Top Chinese economic advisor Liu He made the offer during weekend trade talks in Beijing with a USA delegation led by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday.

Still a widening in China's surplus with the United States is likely to further irritate Washington.

Despite worldwide opposition, U.S. President Donald Trump announced in March a 25-percent tariff on imported steel and a 10-percent tariff on aluminum. He has threatened to slap tariffs on at least US$50 billion in Chinese imports shortly after publishing a final list of targets on June 15.

China's trade surplus with the United States rose to $24.58 billion in May, from $22.15 billion in April, according to Chinese customs data published Friday. During the talks, China promised to expand imports of American farm produce and energy to cut the surplus.

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