GUANGZHOU, April 25 (Xinhua) -- Vice Premier Wang Yang called for more to be done to promote foreign trade while visiting Shenzhen on Monday, as foreign trade will continue to propel economic growth.
"More must be done to mobilize the enthusiasm and creativity of enterprises to make foreign trade more stable and stronger," Wang said.
Wang visited companies including Huawei, drone-maker DJI-Innovations and mobile phone manufacturer Transsion Holdings. He said China still has competitive advantages in foreign trade thanks to the emergence of innovation-driven growth engines, while traditional drivers are still functional.
"Foreign trade should be put in a prominent position in our economic work at present," he said, adding that targeted supportive measures should be carried out and protection of intellectual property rights enhanced.
Tepid global demand and slowing domestic economy have dealt a blow to China's foreign trade. It fell 7 percent year on year in 2015, with exports down 1.8 percent and imports down 13.2 percent.
Data in March provided some relief. Exports surged 18.7 percent year on year, the first increase since December, compared with falls of 20.6 percent in February and 6.6 percent in January. Imports dipped 1.7 percent, an improvement from February's 8-percent drop.