Chinese exports outstrip imports

China has reported a trade surplus that is almost double industry expectations as domestic demand slows.

A merchandise trade surplus of $18.4 billion (£11.4 billion) was recorded for April – up from $5.4 billion in March and almost twice the $9.4 billion analysts predicted.

Exports climbed by 4.9%, while imports meanwhile grew by just 0.4% – down from the 5.3% growth recorded in March.

The latest results represent the second consecutive month whereby a surplus has been reported, following a deficit of $31.5 billion in February. (article continues below)

The results will renew concerns that China’s domestic economy is not responding to government attempts to stimulate demand after it cited this as a priority earlier this year.