S Korea export growth accelerates

AFP, SEOUL

Mon, Sep 02, 2013 - Page 15

South Korea’s exports rose 7.7 percent last month from a year ago, helped by robust shipments of cars and technology products, official data released yesterday showed.

Exports from Asia’s fourth-largest economy increased to US$46.37 billion, the South Korean Ministry of Trade and Commerce said.

In July, exports grew 2.6 percent. Imports gained 0.8 percent on-year to reach US$41.45 billion, resulting in a trade surplus of US$4.9 billion last month compared to a US$2.5 billion surplus in July and US$1.9 billion a year earlier.

Overseas shipments of the country’s key export items, such as cars and mobile devices, surged 43.9 percent and 25.9 percent respectively year-on-year.

Exports of ships and home appliances soared about 26 percent each.

“New smartphones by South Korean firms, including Samsung’s Galaxy S4 and LG’s G2 helped boost exports of mobile devices,” the ministry said in a statement.

Strong sales of mobile devices also helped bolster overseas shipments of memory chips, which posted 22.1 percent on-year growth. Seoul in June raised its growth outlook for this year from 2.3 percent to 2.7 percent, citing the impact of stimulus measures taken earlier this year and signs of recovery in global demand.

The country’s economy expanded 2 percent last year — the slowest in three years.