The Chinese Customs Office released its trade data on Saturday. China's trade surplus fell to $43.03 billion in July from $46.54 billion in June, missing expectations for a rise to a surplus of $53.25 billion.
Exports fell at an annual rate of 0.9% in July, while Imports slid at an annual rate of 14.6%, the ninth consecutive decline.
China's trade with the European Union declined by 7.6% year-on-year in the first seven months to 1.98 trillion yuan.
Trade with Japan plunged 11.1%, while trade with the US increased 2.7%.