BEIJING, Oct. 14 (Xinhua) -- China's foreign trade maintained stable growth in the first three quarters of this year by expanding 2.8 percent year on year, the General Administration of Customs (GAC) said Monday.
Total foreign trade volume reached 22.91 trillion yuan (about 3.23 trillion U.S. dollars) in the first 9 months. Exports expanded 5.2 percent while imports dropped 0.1 percent, GAC data showed.
China saw its trade surplus widen by 44.2 percent year on year to 2.05 trillion yuan during this period.
The country's trade mix continued to improve during this period with the general trade growing both in volume and proportion. General trade grew 4.8 percent year-on-year and accounted for 59.5 percent of the total trade, 1.1 percentage points higher over one year ago.
Private firms made 9.69 trillion yuan of trade in the first 9 months, up 10.4 percent year on year and accounting for 42.3 percent of the country's total foreign trade.
Trade in the country's central and western regions outpaced the national average, GAC data showed. Twelve western provincial regions and six central provinces saw their trade grow 11.8 percent and 12.4 percent respectively during the Jan.-Sept. period.
China's foreign trade was generally stable with steady improvement, said GAC spokesperson Li Kuiwen.