Sun, Dec 02, 2018 - Page 16 News List

S Korean exports grow at slower pace than expected


South Korea’s exports last month grew at a slower pace than some economists forecast amid a slowdown in sales to China, the nation’s biggest trading partner.

The value of shipments abroad rose 4.5 percent from a year earlier, compared with a 6.6 percent gain forecast in a Bloomberg survey of economists.

Exports to China dipped 2.5 percent as Chinese display and mobile-phone companies grabbed more market share, the South Korean Ministry of Trade said in a statement yesterday.

China is increasing its investments in areas where South Korea leads the world, including memory chips.

“Conditions for exports are not going to be easy to deal with, including the spread of global protectionism and currency fluctuations from US interest rate hikes,” South Korean Minister of Trade Sung Yun-mo said in the statement, adding that South Korea would take steps to address implications from US-China trade disputes as well.

Imports increased 11.4 percent, leaving a trade surplus of US$5.1 billion, the ministry said.

Exports increased 7.9 percent to the US and jumped 23.7 percent to the EU, the trade ministry said.

Shipments of semiconductors, which dominate the nation’s exports, increased 11.6 percent from a year earlier, it said.

South Korea releases its trade data earlier than most other major economies and is considered a bellwether for global demand.

Many of the nation’s exports to China consist of intermediate goods that go into finished products to be shipped elsewhere.

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