TOKYO, Aug. 19 (Xinhua) -- Japan booked a goods trade deficit in July, the government said in a report on Monday, owing to a slowdown in demand from major economies with trade issues also taking a toll.
According to the Finance Ministry's figures, compiled on a custom-cleared basis, the trade deficit in the recording month stood at 249.6 billion yen (2.34 billion U.S. dollars), with the latest figure following a revised 589.6 billion yen (5.54 billion U.S. dollars) surplus in June.
The ministry said that exports in July dropped 1.6 percent from a year earlier to 6.64 trillion yen (62.42 billion U.S. dollars), marking an eighth successive month of decline.
Imports, meanwhile, dropped 1.2 percent from a year earlier to 6.89 trillion yen (64.76 billion U.S. dollars), dropping for a third consecutive month, according to the ministry's preliminary data.
With China, Japan's biggest trading partner, the ministry said imports increased 2.8 percent from a year earlier, while exports fell 9.3 percent, creating a deficit of 383.8 billion yen (3.60 billion U.S. dollars) in the recording month.
Japan's trade surplus with the broader Asian region, including China, meanwhile, tumbled 64.6 percent to 188.6 billion yen (1.77 billion U.S. dollars) in the recording month, the ministry said, with exports declining 8.3 percent in the period.
Japan's trade surplus with the United States climbed 15.6 percent from a year earlier to 579.4 billion yen (5.44 billion U.S. dollars), the ministry said, booking a fifth month of gains, while Japan logged a trade deficit of 67.9 billion yen (638.26 million U.S. dollars) with the European Union, with the figure dropping for the first time in two months, the government's data showed.