January exports rose 10.6 percent year-on-year to $207.13 billion U.S. dollars while imports increased 10 percent to $175.27 billion, the General Administration of Customs said in a statement.
The January trade surplus was up 24.25 percent from the previous month.
For all of last year, China earned a trade surplus of $260 billion, up 12.8 percent from 2012. Its total trade last year hit $4.16 trillion, up 7.6 percent from 2012.
China's economy, the world's second largest after the United States, grew 7.7 percent in 2013 from the previous year, unchanged from the year-on-year growth in 2012. However, the last year's fourth quarter growth slowed to 7.7 percent from 7.8 percent in the third quarter.
Commenting on last year's performance, the National Bureau of Statistics said China's economy faced "increasingly complicated and severe external and internal conditions" last year.
Economic growth is expected to slow to 7.4 percent this year.