China's service trade deficit continues to narrow in Q1

  • By Xinhua
  • May 8, 2021
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BEIJING -- China recorded a service trade deficit of 66.69 billion yuan (about $10.3 billion) in the first quarter of this year, down 74.7 percent from the same period a year ago, data from the Ministry of Commerce showed Friday.

The country's total service trade volume reached around 1.16 trillion yuan in the January-March period, up 0.5 percent year-on-year, according to the ministry.

The lower deficit was the result of significant service export growth, which increased by 22.8 percent year-on-year in the reporting period. Meanwhile, service imports dropped by 13.5 percent from a year ago.

China's trade of knowledge-intensive services saw strong growth in the first quarter. It increased by 15.5 percent year-on-year in the period, accounting for 46.6 percent of the total trade in services.

The tourism services industry slumped significantly as the COVID-19 pandemic continued to impact the sector worldwide. In the first quarter, tourism service trade volumes slumped by 45.9 percent year-on-year.

Excluding the tourism sector, the country's service trade in the first three months expanded by 21.1 percent year-on-year.

In March alone, China's service trade rose 7.9 percent year-on-year, the first monthly growth since the COVID-19 outbreak, the data showed.

In contrast to goods trade, trade in services refers to the sale and delivery of intangible products such as transportation, tourism, telecommunications, construction, advertising, computing and accounting.