BEIJING, Dec. 26 (Xinhua) -- China's deficit in foreign service trade shrank slightly to the lowest monthly volume of the year in November, official data showed Wednesday.
The deficit stood at 20 billion U.S. dollars last month, down from 20.6 billion dollars in October, the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) said in a statement.
Income from trade in services stood at 20 billion dollars last month, while expenditures were 40 billion dollars.
In the first 11 months, service trade deficit totaled 269 billion dollars, the SAFE said.
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.
SAFE began issuing monthly data on service trade in January 2014 to improve the transparency of the balance of payment statistics. Since the start of 2015, it has also included monthly data on merchandise trade in its reports.
Last month, China saw a surplus of 80.5 billion dollars in foreign merchandise trade, the SAFE said.