Exports drop 0.66% in March ; trade deficit widens

Total trade with the US rose 6.3% in the quarter

Although the White House insists the U.S.is not in a full-blown trade war with China, Beijing proposed tariffs on 106 American imports, including soybeans, corn, wheat and a number of fruits in response to Washington's plans to place tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese goods.

China's exports growth unexpectedly fell in March, the first drop since February a year ago, raising questions about the health of one of the economy's key growth drivers even as trade tensions rapidly escalate with the United States.

China, Switzerland, Turkey, and Russian Federation came after the U.S.in the list of the EU's main export markets, according to official data.

Mr Trump said the US may avert a trade war after a speech by Mr Xi that the US President believes indicates China is about to open its markets to more US goods.

In view of the latest figures, China's Customs Bureau spokesman Huang Songping repeated the government's line that it was not looking for an advantage over its trading partners.

China's total aluminium exports in March rose to their highest since June, just as the United States imposed tariffs on imports of the metal and steel on March 23. But the solid global growth outlook may provide some buffer.

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"Though the global scenario reflecting forecast for global trade by WTO in 2018 at 4.4 per cent and may moderate to 4 per cent during 2019 shows encouraging scenario for global exports, however trade tensions may pose challenges for exports", it added.

Outstanding yuan loans grew 12.8 percent from a year earlier, slower than an expected 12.9 percent rise and compared with a rise of 12.8 percent in February.

India's merchandise exports fell for the first time in five months in March and the trade deficit widened amid concerns over global trade and US moves to review a programme allowing duty-free imports of goods.

"You know, I was saying it the other day because we're doing a tremendous amount of work in space".

While China's overall trade balance went into the red during March, it's trade balance with the United States did not.

Hi-tech products have been among its fastest growing export segments. "And I was not really serious, and then I said what a great idea, maybe we'll have to do that".

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