China’s Vice Commerce Minister Gao Yan said China-ASEAN trade rose to 472.16 billion U.S. dollars in 2015 from 7.96 billion U.S. dollars in 1991, with an annual growth rate of 18.5 percent.
During the January-May period, however, bilateral trade fell 7.1 percent year on year to 173.57 billion U.S. dollars.
Gao said the two sides are trying their best to “get bilateral-trade growth back on track as soon as possible.”
When asked whether trade ties between China and the Philippines will be affected following the South China Sea arbitration award, Gao said the two countries enjoy “relatively stable” economic and trade relations.
SOUNDBITE (CHINESE): GAO YAN, China’s Vice Commerce Minister
“China and Philippines are enjoying relatively stable economic and trade relations. China is willing to develop mutually beneficial trade and economic ties with the Philippines in various forms. Although some Chinese have called on to boycott products made in Philippines on the internet, the situation doesn’t happen in reality.”