China maintains steady export growth
China is expected to maintain a steady growth in exports this year despite a sharp drop in trade surplus last month.
China would "actively" take steps to work towards a trade balance with other countries, commerce minister, Mr Chen Deming said, adding however that the communist nation would not deliberately pursue trade surplus.
China's trade surplus shrank to $8.55 billion in February, dropping to almost one-third of the January level. Analysts attributed the sharp drop partly to the snow disaster, the worst in five decades which played havoc in half of China.
The trade volume in February was reported at $166.81 billion, an 18.4 per cent jump from the same period last year.
Mr Chen said the decline in the export growth in February was because the factories halted production due to China's Spring Festival, as also due to the impact of US sub-prime mortgage crisis and less consumption demand.
Additionally, Chinese government had also earlier brought in regulatory measures on foreign trade, including lowering export tax rebates for labour-intensive products such as garments and shoes, to discourage exports.
Appreciation of the Chinese currency Yuan against the US dollar also contributed to export slowdown, official Xinhua news agency quoted him as saying.