China's robust exports and imports boost recovery

China's exports rose sharply in March while import growth surged to the highest in four years.

It's another boost to the nation's economic recovery.

And signals improving global demand as worldwide vaccinations pick up speed.

The data suggests the world's second largest economy will continue to gather momentum.

But it's not without challenges.

Lagging consumer rebound, and a resurgence in cases in many countries, as well as Sino-U.S. tensions, have raised risks for the outlook.

Exports soared over 30% in March from a year earlier.

But at a slower pace from the record 154.9% growth in February.

Authorities have been able to largely contain the virus.

Asian stock markets were broadly positive after the data, with strong imports giving investors confidence that domestic demand is improving.

The data showed total Chinese imports jumped over 38% year-on-year last month, the fastest pace since February 2017.

Resurgent infections abroad and constraints in global trade though have left some companies grappling with prolonged delivery timeframes and surging prices of raw materials.

Makers of cars and electronic devices from televisions to smartphones are also sounding alarm bells about the global shortage of chips.