HARBIN, July 22 (Xinhua) -- Northeast China's Heilongjiang Province saw its foreign trade grow by 18.4 percent year on year to reach 93.15 billion yuan (about 14.4 billion U.S. dollars) in the first half of this year, local customs authorities said Wednesday.
Over the period, the province's imports rose by 18.6 percent to 73 billion yuan. Exports amounted to 20.15 billion yuan, up by 17.7 percent year on year, said the Harbin Customs in the provincial capital.
Heilongjiang's export growth was mainly driven by the exports of mechanical and electrical products, which reached 8.72 billion yuan from January to June. It represents a year-on-year growth of 20.9 percent and accounts for over 40 percent of the province's total exports.
Imports of key commodities such as crude oil and natural gas also registered robust growth. In particular, imports of natural gas surged by 178 percent to reach 4.66 billion cubic meters.
Heilongjiang's trade value with its neighbor and major trading partner Russia increased by 18.4 percent to 59.95 billion yuan, making up 64.4 percent of the province's foreign trade volume.