China logs 19-month high export growth of 15.3%
China's exports in September beat expectations with the fastest growth in 19 months, expanding by 15.3 per cent, raising hopes that the slowing down of world's second largest economy may barely manage the official target of 7.5 per cent growth for this year.
The exports netted $213.7 billion in September, a 15.3 per cent increase compared to last year, customs data showed.
The September growth rate was the highest monthly export reading since March 2013, beating analysts' expectations who had projected a 12 per cent rise in exports, state-run Xinhua news agency reported on Monday.
Imports increased seven per cent year on year to $182.7 billion in the month, and total foreign trade volume rose 11.3 per cent to $396.4 billion, the General Administration of Customs (GAC) said. September's growth rate in imports also exceeded market expectations for a 2-per cent decline and marked the best monthly reading since December 2013, GAC said.
The increase in exports came in the midst of intense speculation that China for the first time in recent years may miss the 7.5 per cent official target as an official think-tank besides the World Bank predicted that it may end at 7.3 or 7.4 per cent. However, China's central bank said the growth target of around 7.5 per cent this year would be met helped by urbanisation and economic restructuring.
Property market downturn, the government's efforts to fight pollution and a slowing manufacturing sector are weighing on economic growth in the short term, People's Bank governor Zhou Xiaochuan said in a statement.