China trade minister says stable yuan needed to aid exporters

China’s exports may have fallen in January versus year ago levels and a stable yuan currency is needed to help Chinese exporters, Minister of Commerce Chen Deming said in comments published on Thursday.

“The export situation in January is not optimistic,” Chen said in comments published on the ministry’s website (

“Due to factors such as the Spring Festival, it may have fallen from a year ago,” Chen said.

The Lunar New Year, or Spring Festival, holiday sees China largely shut its factories for at least a week. The holiday fell in January this year, earlier than usual.

Official trade statistics are scheduled to be released on Friday and the consensus forecast is for annual growth of 4.8 percent in January, versus December’s 13.4 percent.

Chen’s comments were made as a written response to interview requests from Bloomberg, according to the ministry’s website.