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China books current account deficit in H1

China reported a current account deficit of $28.3 billion in the first half of 2018 on the back of strong domestic demand for overseas services, Xinhua News Agency reported Aug. 7, citing data from the State Administration of Foreign Exchange, or SAFE.

Service trade posted a wider deficit of $147.3 billion, up from $73.6 billion three months ago. The bulk of the deficit came from spending on trips, transport and intellectual property rights. The country is trying to boost services trade by gradually opening up its finance, education, culture and medical sectors, the report said.

Trade in goods recorded a surplus of $155.9 billion in the first half.

SAFE said China's international balance of payments was within a range of equilibrium in the previous quarter and will continue to remain "reasonable" in the future.

Cross-border capital flows were stable in the second quarter. China's financial account maintained net inflows, with a surplus of $18.2 billion. Net foreign direct investment amounted to $58.6 billion.