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Chinese vice premier urges balanced trade

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GUANGZHOU, April 16 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Vice Premier Wang Qishan has underscored balancing trade through stabilizing exports and increasing imports.

More efforts should be made to improve trade policy, expand the market and facilitate trade activities, Wang said during his visit to the 109th Canton Fair in south China's Guangdong Province, on Friday.

China's economic restructuring drive is an arduous and long-term task. Facing complicated domestic and international conditions, more confidence is needed to carry out the restructuring and promote balanced trade in a sound and fast pace, he said.

He urged the nation's exporters to stick to high quality and business integrity, protect intellectual property rights and cultivate their own brands.

China saw a trade deficit of 1.02 billion U.S. dollars from January to March this year, the first quarterly trade deficit in six years, customs data showed.

Rising commodity prices globally contributed to the import surge, the customs authority said.

Officially known as the China Import and Export Fair, Canton Fair is China's largest trade fair, also known as the barometer of the nation's foreign trade.

Before its opening on Friday, organizers said this year's fair would see less overseas buyers than the last session due to the north African unrest, Japanese earthquake and global inflation.

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