China's foreign trade deficit shrank to US$490 million in the first five months of this year, suggesting a dramatic trade surplus of $220 million in May. The deficit was $710 million at the end of April. The China News Service attributed the fall to an easing off in the downward slide in exports recorded earlier in the year combined with slower import growth. But official statistics showed the drop was caused by a jump in exports for foreign-invested enterprises. Overall trade grew 2.6 per cent in the first five months compared with a year earlier to $104.07 billion. Exports shrank 7.1 per cent to $51.79 billion, while imports shot up 14.5 per cent to $52.28 billion, the report said. The agency said the decline in exports slowed by 0.6 percentage points in the first five months compared with the first four months. Import growth slowed by 3.6 percentage points. Overall trade of foreign-invested enterprises jumped 30 per cent in the first five months, accounting for 46 per cent of China's trade. Exports of the sector shot up 38.6 per cent to $21.18 billion in the period. The processing and assembly sector remained the largest contributor to foreign trade, accounting for 50 per cent of overall trade, up from 47 per cent in the period last year. The report said exports of traditional products, including garments, textile yarns and fabrics, toys, travel bags and plastic products, were falling. Electronics and machinery export recorded an increase of 6.5 per cent to $16.65 billion. Raw materials, electronics and machinery remained the largest import categories.