In another sign that China not only dodged the worst of the recession, but that its impressive growth has accelerated as many other major nations continue to suffer economically, the world's biggest country by population reported that exports increased 14.1% in December. Its trade surplus rose to $31.6 billion as well.
According to Bloomberg:
[T]he U.S. replaced the EU last year as China's largest export market, Zheng Yuesheng, head of customs statistics, said at a press briefing today. Sales to the bloc fell 6.2 percent in 2012. The two markets together accounted for one-third of China's exports in 2012, customs data showed.
December exports may have been boosted by the impact of a strike at California ports that ended Dec. 4, according to Lu. Rushed shipments and even faked exports to secure tax refunds may also have contributed to the stronger growth, according to Alistair Thornton, a Beijing-based economist at IHS Inc.
China's Ministry of Commerce, which oversees trade policies, said in a statement last month that it will seek to stabilize the scale of exports and improve support for trade growth in 2013.
Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, China, International Markets