This page has been archived and is no longer updated. Find out more about page archiving.
Skip to main contentAccess keys helpA-Z index
BBC Learning English Launch BBC Media Player
  • Help
  • Text only
You are in:Learning English > News English > Words in the News
Learning English - Words in the News
12 October, 2007 - Published 10:18 GMT
China's growing trade surplus
Chinese shopper

China's trade surplus grew to its fourth highest monthly level on record in September. These figures are adding to pressure on Beijing to take action on revaluing its currency at the UN. From Shanghai, Quentin Sommerville reports:

Listen to the story

China's trade surplus with the rest of the world just keeps on growing. While it means the country is being flooded with cash, it's also causing the government a number of headaches.

The surplus for September jumped fifty six per cent on the previous year to almost twenty four billion dollars. A host of scandals involving everything from poison toothpaste to lead paint in toys doesn't seem to have harmed China's exports for now. The surplus wouldn't be so big if Chinese consumers bought more goods from overseas but the rising middle class has been slow to spend its new found wealth.

Some lawmakers in America say that the reason that China's exports are so inexpensive is because the currency, the Yuan, is undervalued. They'd like to tax Chinese goods entering America to make them more expensive in the hope of protecting American manufacturers, although that wouldn't go down well with American shoppers who have grown used to falling prices courtesy of Chinese factories.

Quentin Sommerville, BBC News, Shanghai

Listen to the words

trade surplus
this means that the quantity of goods that China sells to other countries is much more than the quantity of goods it buys from other countries

keeps on growing
continues to get bigger

flooded with cash
there is a lot of money in the local economy


increased a lot

A host of
A lot of

goods that a country sells to other countries

politicians, people who make the laws

if a country's currency is undervalued it means that goods made in that country can be very cheap in other countries

wouldn't go down well with
wouldn't be popular with

27 May, 2011
Destruction of smallpox virus delayed
25 May, 2011
Micro-finance 'misused and abused'
20 May, 2011
Lonely planets
18 May, 2011
Germany to invest in more electric cars
16 May, 2011
Argentina builds a tower of books
Other Stories