BEIJING, Sept. 4 (Xinhua) -- China's service trade totaled 3.09 trillion yuan (about 436 billion U.S. dollars) during the first seven months of 2019, up 3.2 percent year on year, data from the Ministry of Commerce showed Wednesday.
Service exports amounted to 1.1 trillion yuan, up 9.5 percent, while imports came in at 1.99 trillion yuan, the ministry said in a statement.
The service trade deficit stood at 887.1 billion yuan during the period, down 9.8 percent year on year.
In contrast to 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 has taken steps to improve the development of trade in services, including gradually opening up the finance, education, culture and medical treatment sectors.
Wednesday's data also showed the country's trade of knowledge-intensive services maintained rapid expansion, increasing 10.9 percent year on year to 1.06 trillion yuan.