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Trade war

China struggles to cut trade surplus as US imports more

Buoyed by strong economy, Americans sought computers, phones and toys

Ports such as this one in Qingdao, China, may see a slowdown in activity as trade tensions rise between the world's two biggest economies.

BEIJING -- China tried to reduce its trade surplus with the U.S. by boosting imports from the world's largest economy, but the effort collapsed in the face of surging exports, sending the tally to a record high in the first half.

China's trade surplus with the U.S. climbed 14% on the year to $133.7 billion in the January-June period, China's General Administration of Customs said Friday. The record figure comes at at a time of escalating trade tensions. The U.S. has asked China, the world's No. 2 economy, to cut its trade surplus by $200 billion annually.

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