TOKYO – Japan reported a trade surplus of 359 billion yen ($3.25 billion) in December, ending the year 2017 with positive results for the second year in a row, the Japanese government reported on Wednesday.
The December 2017 surplus was 43.5 percent lower than that of December 2016, although it was the seventh consecutive month with positive balance for the world’s third largest economy, according to data published by the Ministry of Finance.
Exports grew 9.3 percent year-on-year to 6.68 trillion yen and imports 14.9 percent to 6.04 trillion yen.
In terms of countries, Japan had a deficit of 197.708 billion yen with China, its largest trading partner, representing a 7.8 percent decrease year-on-year.
With the world’s largest economy and its second largest trading partner, the United States, Japan saw a surplus of 711.970 billion yen, a one percent decrease from the same month of 2016.
With the European Union, its third trading partner, Japan equaled its deficit with 50.825 billion yen.
Throughout 2017, Japan registered a trade surplus of 2.99 trillion, a 25.1 percent increase over the previous year.
From January to December 2017, Japanese exports increased by 11.8 percent, while imports grew by 14 percent.