Japan's trade surplus with the rest of the world expanded for the second consecutive year in 2010, widening 153.4 percent to $82.56 billion, as exports grew faster than imports, according to preliminary figures released by the Finance Ministry on Thursday.
Japan's overall exports rose for the first time in three years, increasing 24.4 percent to $822.02 billion, while its overall imports rose for the first time in two years, growing 17.7 percent to $739.46 billion.
The rise in Japan's overall exports was led by automobiles, auto parts and steel. The rise in imports was fueled by crude oil, liquefied natural gas and nonferrous metals.
By The Numbers: U.S. Foreign Trade
Japan's exports to the U.S. rose for the first time in four years, increasing 18.9 percent to $126.65 billion, while its imports from the U.S. rose for the first time in three years, growing 7.2 percent to $72.04 billion.
As a result, Japan's trade surplus with the U.S. expanded for the first time in four years, widening 39 percent to $54.61 billion.
China was Japan's largest export market for two years in succession. Japan's shipments to China grew 27.9 percent to a record high of $159.6 billion.
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