China’s exports to the U.S. shrank by more than one-fifth last month, hit by heavier tariffs, underscoring the urgency for Beijing to resolve trade friction with Washington.

Chinese shipments to the U.S. slumped nearly 22% in September from a year earlier, accelerating from a 16% decline in August, data from the General Administration of Customs showed Monday. The U.S. decline was a major factor, along with a slowing global economy, in the 3.2% drop in total exports in September. That compared with August’s 1% decrease and was slightly worse than economists’ expectations.

High-level trade talks between China and the U.S. in the past few days yielded a truce. President Trump said the U.S. would shelve a planned increase in tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods in return for China’s assurance it would buy agricultural products from the U.S. worth $40 billion to $50 billion. The outcome was seen as something of a win for China as it allowed Beijing to postpone action on concessions it doesn’t want to make.


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