China's foreign service trade deficit widens
Updated: 2016-08-26 15:14
BEIJING - China saw an expanding deficit in foreign service trade in July, data from the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) showed on Friday.
Income from trade in services stood at $23.1 billion last month, while expenditures totaled $45.6 billion, resulting in a deficit of $22.5 billion.
The deficit was higher than the June total of $19.4 billion and $19.1 billion in May.
Distinct from merchandise trade, trade in services refers to the sale and delivery of intangible products such as transportation, tourism, telecommunications, construction, advertising, computing and accounting.
China's service trade volume grew from $362.4 billion in 2010 to $713 billion in 2015, doubling the average international growth speed. The country is aiming to increase its service trade volume to over $1 trillion by 2020.
The State Council has pledged measures to improve the development of trade in services, including gradually opening up the finance, education, culture and medical sectors.
SAFE began releasing monthly data on service trade in January 2014 to improve the transparency of balance of payments statistics. Since the beginning of 2015, it has also included monthly data on merchandise trade in its reports.
In July, China saw a surplus of $50 billion in foreign merchandise trade, up from $45.1 billion in June, according to SAFE.