Official figures indicate that the value in renminbi of Chinese merchandise trade grew to 6.75 trillion yuan (US$1.07 trillion) in the first quarter of this year, 9.4 percent more than a year earlier, Xinhua reports.

The Chinese state-run news agency, citing data compiled by the Chinese General Administration of Customs, says exports grew by 7.4 percent and imports grew by 11.7 percent, yielding a trade surplus of 326.18 billion yuan.

The report quotes Chinese General Administration of Customs spokesman Huang Songping as telling a press conference that the relatively swift growth was due to a mild recovery in the global economy and sound development of the Chinese economy, which strengthened demand for imports.

Mr Huang expects Chinese trade to keep growing this year, despite uncertainty about the global economy and greater protectionism, because the government means to open the Chinese market wider outsiders and to increase imports, Xinhua says.


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