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EU posts €26.5 bln deficit in first quarter

The European Union (EU) external current account recorded a deficit of €26.5 billion in the first quarter of 2008, the EU statistical service Eurostat said.

A deficit of €30.4 billion ($47.7 billion) was recorded in the first three months of 2007 while a deficit of €7.3 billion ($11.46 billion) in the fourth quarter of 2007,

In the first quarter of 2008, compared with the first quarter of last year, the deficit of the goods account rose from €44.3 billion ($69.5 billion) to €53.7 billion ($84.3 billion), while the surplus of the services account decreased slightly to €17.4 billion ($27.3 billion) from €18.9 billion ($29.6 billion).

The surplus recorded in the services account is mainly the result of surpluses in financial services; other business services, which includes miscellaneous business, professional and technical services, computer and information services and transportation.

In the first quarter of 2008, the EU external current account recorded a surplus with the United States, Switzerland, Canada and Hong Kong, China. (Xinhua)