Japan posts yawning trade gap as China exports slow | Business and Economy

The widening trade deficit highlights the vulnerability of the world’s third-largest economy to soaring import costs.

Japan recorded a trade deficit in March that was more than four times wider than market forecasts, as China-bound exports slowed sharply while soaring energy prices raised the cost of imports, adding to economic challenges brought by conflict in Ukraine.

Outgoing trade was restrained by a decline in car exports and a slowdown in the growth of shipments to Japan’s biggest trading partner China, data showed, indicating continuing risk from global supply constraints and the coronavirus pandemic.

The persistent trade deficit highlights the world’s third-largest economy’s vulnerability to soaring import costs.

“Japan’s economy may see a slower recovery if China-bound exports are sluggish,” said Takeshi Minami, chief economist at Norinchukin Research Institute. Exports to China make up more than a fifth of Japan’s total…

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