BEIJING — China will take an array of measures to support foreign trade this year amid increased uncertainty, a senior official said on March 18.
The country’s foreign trade development is facing a more complicated and severe environment with greater uncertainty and more risks and challenges, Assistant Commerce Minister Ren Hongbin told a national conference on imports and exports.
However, China “has the foundation and necessary conditions to achieve its target of keeping foreign trade stable while improving its quality” this year, Ren said.
Authorities will ensure thorough implementation of current trade policies and steadily push the drive to build China into a major trader power, he said.
More efforts will be made to diversify the country’s export destinations and optimize the market structure, according to Ren.
Policies to support new business types including cross-border e-commerce will be improved to foster new models of trade, while processing trade will be upgraded, he said.
Measures will be taken to expand imports and improve their structure, to boost border trade and to improve the level of trade facilitation, Ren said.
China’s foreign trade in merchandize hit a historic high of 30.51 trillion yuan (about $4.5 trillion) in 2018, up 9.7 percent year-on-year.
Trade dropped 9.4 percent year-on-year last month but rebounded strongly after the week-long Spring Festival holiday. In the first eight days of March, trade soared 24.7 percent year-on-year, with exports rising nearly 40 percent.