3 Aug 2010 13:57

Russia-China trade up to almost pre-crisis level

MOSCOW. Aug 3 (Interfax) - Russian-Chinese trade volume grew 51.6% year-on-year in the first half and reached $25.7 billion, just 4% less than in the same pre-crisis half of 2008, Russian trade representative to China Sergei Tsyplakov said during a Moscow-Peking teleconference on Tuesday.

Russia's first-half exports to China were up 45.6% from H1 2009 at $13.9 billion, and imports of Chinese goods had surged 59% to $11.8 billion, Tsyplakov said, quite a bit more than experts had anticipated.

He did note, however, that the impressive year-on-year growth was largely due to the low H1 2009 figures caused by the world economic crisis. The numbers compared very positively with those from H1 2008, he said.

As to his forecast for growth in bilateral trade in 2010 as a whole, Tsyplakov said overall turnover could reach $54-$55 billion, which would also be very comparable to 2008. But a number of ambiguous factors do still exist in trade relations with China, so that forecast might be described as optimistic, he added.