China Balance of Trade  1983-2018 | Data | Chart | Calendar | Forecast

China's trade surplus narrowed sharply to USD 20.34 billion in January 2018 from USD 50.21 billion in the same month a year earlier and way below market consensus of USD 54.1 billion. It was the smallest trade surplus since a rare deficit in February 2017, mainly due to a jump in imports. Balance of Trade in China averaged 97.43 USD HML from 1983 until 2018, reaching an all time high of 628.33 USD HML in February of 2015 and a record low of -319.71 USD HML in February of 2012.

China Balance of Trade
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China January Trade Surplus Smaller than Expected

China's trade surplus narrowed sharply to USD 20.34 billion in January 2018 from USD 50.21 billion in the same month a year earlier and way below market consensus of USD 54.1 billion. It was the smallest trade surplus since a rare deficit in February 2017, mainly due to a jump in imports.

Imports jumped 36.9 percent from a year earlier to USD 180.2 billion in January, easily beating market expectations of a 9.8 percent advance and after 4.5 percent in December. Purchases of crude oil hit a record volume of 40.64 million tonnes, compared with 33.7 million tonnes in December, following China's decision to raise its 2018 crude oil import quota for the country's independent refiners by 55 percent over 2017. In addition, imports of iron ore went up 19 percent to 100 million tonnes, the second highest level on record, ahead of the lifting of steel production curbs next month; and purchases of coal rose to a four-year high of 27.81 million tonnes, compared with 22.74 million a month earlier, as heavy snow storms across the country boosted demand at utilities. On the other hand, China's unwrought copper imports fell for a second straight month to 440,000 tonnes in January from December's 450,000 tonnes. Also, imports of gas stood at 7.77 million tonnes, slightly below December's figure of 7.89 million tonnes; and imports of soybeans were at 8.48 million tonnes, down from 9.55 million tonnes in the preceding month.

Exports rose 11.1 percent to USD 200.5 billion, picking up from a 10.9 percent gain in December and also beating market consensus of 9.6 percent. However, Chinese steel exports fell by 18 percent from the previous month and by 37 percent from a year ago to 4.65 million tonnes, the lowest since February 2013.

The trade surplus with the US, China's largest export market, narrowed to USD 21.9 billion from 25.6 billion in December, as exports to the country rose 11.1 percent to USD 37.6 billion while imports grew 26.4 percent to USD 15.7 billion. Also, the trade surplus with the EU was USD 9.9 billion, with exports rising by 10.3 percent and imports by 44.6 percent; and that with ASEAN countries was USD 2.5 billion, as exports advanced 18.4 percent and imports 48.3 percent. Meanwhile, the biggest trade deficit was recorded with Taiwan (USD 10.5 billion, with exports increasing 25.4 percent and imports 41.6 percent), followed by South Korea (USD 8.2 billion, with exports increasing 9.2 percent and imports 28.6 percent), Australia (USD 5.4 billion, with exports increasing 0.1 percent and imports 11.7 percent) and Japan (USD 1.5 billion, with exports increasing 1.4 and imports 37.3 percent).

In yuan-denominated terms, the Chinese trade surplus shrank 59.7 percent from a year earlier to CNY 135.8 billion, as imports surged 30.2 percent to CNY 1.19 trillion while exports increased at a slower 6 percent to CNY 1.32 trillion.

Trade in January and February can be distorted by the Lunar New Year holiday, with business slowing down weeks ahead of time and companies scaling back operations. This year, the holiday falls on February 16th.

Rida Husna |
2/8/2018 8:18:59 AM

Calendar GMT Actual Previous Consensus TEForecast
2017-12-08 03:00 AM Balance of Trade $40.21B $38.19B $35.00B $40B
2018-01-12 03:00 AM Balance of Trade $54.69B $40.21B $37B $36B
2018-02-08 03:00 AM Balance of Trade $20.34B $54.69B $54.1B $45B
2018-03-08 03:00 AM Balance of Trade $20.34B $54.1B $5B
2018-04-13 03:00 AM Balance of Trade 311.24
2018-05-08 03:00 AM Balance of Trade 292.85

China Trade Last Previous Highest Lowest Unit
Balance of Trade 203.40 546.85 628.33 -319.71 USD HML [+]
Exports 2005.19 2317.86 2317.86 13.00 USD HML [+]
Imports 1801.79 1771.01 1830.94 16.60 USD HML [+]
Current Account 622.00 404.75 1330.85 -8.96 USD HML [+]
Current Account to GDP 1.40 1.80 10.10 -3.70 percent [+]
External Debt 14207.00 14162.00 14207.00 158.28 USD HML [+]
Terms of Trade 95.70 97.51 118.33 81.75 Index Points [+]
Foreign Direct Investment 80.36 1343.03 1343.03 18.32 USD HML [+]
Capital Flows -622.00 142.35 464.08 -1305.58 USD HML [+]
Tourist Arrivals 2815.12 2598.54 2815.12 22.96 Tens of Thousands [+]
Gold Reserves 1842.56 1842.56 1842.56 395.01 Tonnes [+]
Crude Oil Production 3770.00 3779.00 4408.00 1012.00 BBL/D/1K [+]
Terrorism Index 5.54 6.11 6.29 1.47 [+]
Weapons Sales 2123.00 1764.00 2606.00 3.00 USD Million [+]
Exports to India 6119309.00 6546000.00 6546000.00 2326991.00 USD THO [+]

Exports by Country  |   Exports by Category  |   Imports by Country  |   Imports by Category

China Balance of Trade

Since 1995, China has been recording consistent trade surpluses which from 2004 to 2009 has increased 10 times. In 2017, China’s total trade incensed by 14.2 percent as exports grew 10.8 percent and imports rose 18.7 percent. The biggest trade surpluses were recorded with Hong Kong, the US, the Netherlands, India, the UK, Vietnam, Singapore and Indonesia. China recorded trade deficits with Taiwan, South Korea, Australia, Germany, Brazil and South Africa. This page provides - China Balance of Trade - actual values, historical data, forecast, chart, statistics, economic calendar and news. China Balance of Trade - actual data, historical chart and calendar of releases - was last updated on February of 2018.

Actual Previous Highest Lowest Dates Unit Frequency
203.40 546.85 628.33 -319.71 1983 - 2018 USD HML Monthly
Current Prices, NSA

balance of trade by Country
Country Last
Australia -1358.00 Dec/17
Brazil 2768.44 Jan/18
Canada -3186.30 Dec/17
China 203.40 Jan/18
Euro Area 25414.60 Dec/17
France -3468.00 Dec/17
Germany 18226.00 Dec/17
India -16298.47 Jan/18
Indonesia -676.90 Jan/18
Italy 5253.08 Dec/17
Japan -943.42 Jan/18
Mexico -156.97 Dec/17
Netherlands 4104.00 Dec/17
Russia 13700.00 Dec/17
South Korea 3700.00 Jan/18
Spain -2050000.00 Dec/17
Switzerland 1323.45 Jan/18
Turkey -9206.19 Dec/17
United Kingdom -4896.00 Dec/17
United States -53118.00 Dec/17