China is third largest global trade power

Himalayan News Service

Beijing, January 12:

China registered a 35.7 per cent surge in foreign trade last year, with a total volume of $1.15 trillion, making it the world’s third largest trading power after the US and Germany, reports Xinhua.

According to China’s commerce ministry, exports in 2004 ballooned to $593.4 billion, reflecting a year-on-year increase of 35.4 per cent. Imports rose by 36 per cent to $561.4 billion. The yearly surplus came to $32 billion against the previous year’s $25.5 billion. According to Fan Ying, a professor with Beijing’s Foreign Affairs University, “China’s imports rose sharply in the first half of the year.” In April the Chinese government launched efforts to clamp down on overheated investment in selected sectors such as steel and cement.

Credit tightening and scrutiny over approval of land deals soon cooled down the investment spree and placed the growth of imports at a reasonable level. “Chinese companies and individuals have been able to receive trading rights through registering since July 2004,” Fan said, “That has injected vigour in the market for millions of private, small and medium-sized enterprises.” Overseas firms were allowed greater access to the nation’s trading markets with shareholder requirements loosening. Commerce ministry spokesperson Chong Quan said trade volume surpassed a landmark $1 trillion in November. But he confessed China still has a long way to go before it became a ‘strong’ trading power.