Growth in exports from China to the U.S. slowed significantly in the first half of 2018, according to official data, indicating that the brewing trade conflict between the two nations may already be taking a toll.
China exports to the U.S. expanded 5.4 percent in the first half, 13.9 percentage points lower than the same period last year, the General Administration of Customs said in a statement on its website. Exports from China to the U.S. in June rose 3.8 percent, 23.8 percentage points lower than the same month in 2017.
The U.S.-specific data was released before the usual time, as the July 6 start-date for American tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese imports gets closer. There is little sign of a compromise between the world’s two biggest economies which might avoid the imposition of U.S. import tariffs and an equivalent amount of retaliatory Chinese duties this week.