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China Trade Surplus Falls

Chinese officials say the country's trade surplus fell sharply in August, after an unexpected jump in imports.

China's customs agency said Saturday that exports rose 24.5 percent year-on-year in August to $173 billion.

However, imports jumped 30.2 percent to $155.5 billion in August, breaking the previous monthly record of $152.2 billion set in March.

As a result, the report said, China's trade surplus narrowed to $17.8 billion from July's 30-month high of $31.5 billion.

China's trade surplus is a major point of contention for its key trade partners, the United States and Europe, who seek better market access to the world's second-largest economy.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.