China Export Slump Eases

China's exports fell 1.2 percent from a year earlier in November, the smallest decline this year as nascent recoveries in the U.S. and other big markets helped revive demand.

Imports into the world's third-largest economy also rebounded strongly, rising 26.7 percent over the same month last year, the Customs Administration said in reports posted on its Web site.

The figures suggest the global recovery is gaining momentum as consumers in the U.S. and other countries begin spending more after months of holding back.

The meager decline in November's exports compared with a 13.8 percent drop in October and even bigger declines in previous months. Adjusted for seasonal factors, November's decline was 0.3 percent, the customs data showed, while imports rose 22.2 percent.

China's trade surplus fell to $19.9 billion in November from $24 billion in October, with exports at $113.6 billion and imports totaling $94.5 billion.

At an annual planning meeting earlier this week, China's leaders announced that supporting exports would remain a key goal of the government's stimulus policies, though they also said they would seek more balanced trade by promoting imports.

EU and U.S. officials say China's recovery means its manufacturers are in good enough shape that Beijing can afford to relax the de facto link between the renminbi and the U.S. dollar.

China's exports to the U.S. fell 14.8 percent from a year earlier in November to $20 billion, while imports also continued to fall, by 9 percent to $7.2 billion, leaving a surpus of $12.8 billion.

Exports to the EU plunged 21.8 percent to $22.08 billion while imports dropped 6.4 percent from the year before to $11.78 billion.

China Export Slump Eases, AP
12/11/2009 10:38:34 AM