Customs data released Wednesday showed exports to all of Asia dropped 13 percent year-on-year, largely due to a 17 percent decline in shipments to China.
Japan’s total trade deficit expanded by nearly half from a year earlier to 1.4 trillion yen ($12.8 billion).
The decline in exports spanned most major categories of products, from chemicals and machinery to electronics and cars. Imports of crude oil also fell sharply, largely due to lower prices.
The politically delicate trade surplus with the United States rose 5 percent to $3.3 billion as exports climbed nearly 7 percent, though imports of American goods rose by a slightly higher margin.