Trade between China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) grew 1.2 percent year on year to 1.12 trillion yuan (181.75 billion U.S. dollars) in the first five months of this year, Chinese customs data showed on Sunday.
The growth came amid a 2.2-percent decline in China's general trade during the same period in yuan-denominated calculations, according to the data released by the General Administration of Customs.
During the January-May period, Chinese exports to ASEAN expanded 4.1 percent to 621.01 billion yuan, compared with a 2.7 percent drop in the nation's general exports, the data showed.
Meanwhile, imports from the ASEAN went down 2.2 percent to 498.57 billion yuan, with the drop deeper than a 1.6 percent decline in the nation's general imports, the data showed.
Analysts said that economic cooperation between China and the ASEAN has remained stable, even though political and economic instability in some ASEAN countries has brought down bilateral trade growth from a high gear since the first quarter of the year.
But trade has proved resilient despite the ambivalent world economic recovery and growing protectionism. Trade rose 10.9 percent to 444 billion U.S. dollars in 2013, exceeding the 7.6 percent increase in China's total foreign trade.
China is the largest trading partner of ASEAN and ASEAN has emerged as China's third largest partner, a major investment destination and an important tourist destination.