China Exports Grow At Slower Pace

China's exports and imports grew at slower rates at the end of the year, data from the General Administration of Customs revealed on Friday.

Exports grew 20.9 percent on a yearly basis in December after rising 22.0 percent in November. The annual growth was forecast to slow to 20.0 percent.

At the same time, annual growth in imports eased more sharply to 19.5 percent from 31.7 percent in the previous month. The expected rate was 26.3 percent.

Consequently, the trade surplus rose to $94.46 billion in December, and remained above the expected level of $74.5 billion.

Exports remained strong last month but may soften in the coming months amid growing disruptions at ports, Julian Evans-Pritchard, an economist at Capital Economics, said.

Meanwhile, imports dropped back sharply reflecting the continued domestic weakness, especially in the property sector, the economist added.

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