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Year-on-year, its overall exports grew faster than expected in September, at 14.5 per cent in dollar terms compared with 9.8 per cent in August, while growth of imports slowed to 14.3 per cent from 20 per cent, the customs administration said. Analysts had expected imports to rise 15.0 percent, compared with August's 19.9 percent. -China trade frictions "have been escalating and other unstable factors still exist caused by a number of economic uncertainties worldwide", he said.

China's trade surplus with the United States ballooned to a record $34.1 billion in September, despite a raft of USA tariffs, official data showed Friday, adding fuel to the fire of a worsening trade war.

The measures are the latest salvo in a widening USA drive to pressure China, with the Trump administration recently slapping $250 billion in tariffs.

President Donald Trump regularly cites the United States' massive trade deficit with China as a primary justification for his decision to implement tariffs.

Concerns have been raised that China, the largest foreign holder of U.S. Treasurys, might start dumping its holdings as a way to pressure the United States in the trade dispute.

"China's trade surplus will keep rising because the domestic economy is cooling down", said Andy Xie, a Shanghai-based independent economist. China then hit back with tariffs on about $60-billion of US imports.


"Their economy has gone down very substantially", he said. This came despite the Trump administration slapping tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods in the middle of the month, which prompted Beijing to retaliate with tariffs on $60 billion worth of American goods.

US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin - in comments published in the Financial Times this week - warned China against engaging in competitive currency devaluations.

Separately, Mnuchin told CNBC in a televised interview on Friday that Trump would go through with plans to meet Xi "if it looks like we can make positive direction", adding that there was no set deadline for trade talks with China. The Chinese currency has been falling in value against the dollar in recent months, raising concerns that Beijing is devaluing its currency to make Chinese goods more competitive against USA products.

"The way the US has structured the tariffs encourages frontloading because firms that know they're going to hit with tariffs would rather pay 10 percent than 25 percent", he said.

China's overall trade - what it buys and sells with all countries including the USA - logged a $31.7bn surplus, as exports rose faster than imports.

The IMF has also lowered estimates for the United States and the global economy as a whole.


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