Jan. 20, 2021, 8:21 p.m. EST

Japan's exports rise for first time in 2 years

By Megumi Fujikawa

Japan's exports increased in December, rising for the first time in more than two years thanks to the recovery of demand from China and other Asian countries.

Exports rose 2% in December from a year earlier, according to Ministry of Finance data released Thursday. That was stronger than November's 4.2% decline and the 0.3% drop expected by economists surveyed by data provider FactSet.

Exports to China climbed 10.2% from a year earlier in December thanks to demand for plastic, nonferrous metals and raw materials. Meanwhile, exports to the U.S. declined 0.7% due to weakness in demand for aircraft, chip-making machines and mineral fuels.

Write to Megumi Fujikawa at megumi.fujikawa@wsj.com

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