Trade between the Chinese mainland and Taiwan in the first quarter totaled 51.44 billion U.S. dollars, up 46.5 percent from the same period last year, a mainland spokesman said Wednesday. The value of mainland exports to Taiwan from January to March totaled 9.73 billion U.S. dollars, up 32 percent year on year, State Council Taiwan Affairs Office spokesman Yang Yi said at a regular press conference, citing official figures. During the same period, mainland imports from the island stood at 41.71 billion U.S. dollars, registering a 50.3-percent increase year on year, he said. In the first quarter, the mainland approved 442 investment projects from Taiwanese businessmen and reported actual use of 760 million U.S. dollars in Taiwanese investment, Yang said. Eight mainland firms were given permission by mainland authorities to invest in Taiwan, with their investment totaling 2.94 million U.S. dollars.