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February Trade Surplus Up Tenfold
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China's trade surplus for February skyrocketed tenfold year-on-year, reaching US$23.76 billion, the General Administration of Customs announced yesterday.


While exports topped the January total by 51.7 percent, imports rose at a sluggish 13.1 percent, less than half the previous month's growth rate.


February's totals hit US$82.1 billion for exports and US$58.34 billion for imports. This amounted to a total trade volume of US$140.44 billion, up 32.9 percent year-on-year, according to the latest figures.


In terms of trade surplus, February stood close to 50 percent higher than January, when the surplus had leveled out at US$15.88 billion.


The rise of the yuan has seen exporters' revenues increase, while the matching rise for importers was significantly slower, due to cheaper imported primary products, said Mei Xinyu, research fellow at the Ministry of Commerce's International Trade and Economic Cooperation Research Institute.


The RMB's consistent rise against the US dollar peaked at a new record high last Thursday with the central parity rate reaching 7.7386 yuan to the dollar. Furthermore, so far in 2007, the yuan has gained 613 basis points.


In 2006, China's trade surplus maintained its meteoric rise, leaping 74 percent year-on-year to reach US$177.47 billion.


International trade rose with top trading partner, the European Union, seeing trade with China reach US$51.08 billion for the first two months of 2007, indicating a 42.7 percent jump from last year, the customs data show.


The United States ranked second with a trade volume of US$43.86 billion, trailed by Japan and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.


(Xinhua News Agency March 13, 2007)

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