China’s export machine is expected to keep roaring over the short term due to the global spread of Omicron, but Beijing has warned of increasing downside risks in 2022 after the nation’s exporters saw record-high exports last year.

Despite geopolitical tensions with the US and global disruptions of supply chains during the pandemic, China’s trade surplus with the rest of the world rose 29 per cent in 2021 from a year prior, to US$67.64 billion – the highest since record-keeping began in 1950, according to Chinese customs data released on Friday.

Its trade surplus with the United States also reached a record high US$396.58 billion in 2021, amid a protracted rivalry between the world’s two largest economies.

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