* 2013 current account surplus $182.8 bln-SAFE
* 2013 capital/financial account surplus $326.2 bln
* SAFE sees possible capital outflows in 2014
(Adds details, quotes)
BEIJING, April 4 China's current account surplus
was equivalent to 2 percent of gross domestic product in 2013,
down from 2.6 percent in the previous year, official data
showed, as the government seeks to reduce the economy's reliance
on external demand.
China had a final current account surplus of $182.8 billion
in 2013, falling 15 percent from the previous year, the State
Administration of Foreign Exchange, or SAFE, said in a statement
on its website, ww.safe.gov.cn.
The fourth-quarter current account surplus was $44 billion.
The surplus-to-GDP ratio has comfortably fallen below the
threshold that some U.S. officials have recommended as necessary
to keep the global economy well balanced.
China's current account surplus was about 6 percent of GDP
in 2009 and 10.1 percent in 2007. The steady decline has been
helped by the country's solid economic growth in recent years.
China will be able to maintain a certain level of current
account surplus in 2014, the foreign exchange regulator said,
vowing to keep the balance of payments basically stable and
prevent risks from cross-border capital flows.
China needs to improve its ability to cope with possible
capital outflows this year due to emerging market volatility, it
"Externally, the Federal Reserve's exit from quantitative
monetary policy easing could lead to repeated market
speculation. Its negative impact will gradually accumulate and
more shocks in emerging markets could spread to China," it said.
China had a surplus of $326.2 billion in its capital and
financial account, including a $127 billion surplus in the
fourth quarter, according to SAFE.
China's foreign exchange reserves grew nearly $510 billion
in 2013, signalling heavy intervention by the central bank to
control the yuan's rise, which was nearly 3 percent.
But the yuan has shed 2.6 percent so far this year as the
central bank took advantage of the country's weak external trade
picture at the start of the year to strike at speculators
betting on sustained one-way appreciation of the yuan.
Last month, the central bank doubled the yuan's daily
trading band to help introduce more two-way currency volatility.
SAFE said that it will continue to push forward yuan
convertibility on the capital account while stepping up its
monitoring of cross-border capital flows.
It will improve the way it manages China's foreign exchange
reserves, at a record $3.82 trillion at the end of 2013, to
safeguard and increase the value of the reserves, the regulator
said without elaborating.
(Reporting by Xiaoyi Shao and Kevin Yao; Editing by Kim