Business & Economy

South Korea’s trade surplus expands by 654.5% in April

Seoul, Jun 1 (EFE).- South Korea recorded a trade surplus of $2.93 billion in May, a year-on-year increase of 654.5 percent that is contributing in cementing the recovery of the country’s economy from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

This is the 13th month that the country has recorded a trade surplus, according to the data released by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy on Tuesday.

Compared to May of last year when many countries around the world were under lockdowns, exports grew by 45.6 percent year-on-year to stand at $50.7 billion, driven mainly by the demand for chips, the ministry said.

In turn, imports increased by 37.9 percent over May 2020 to $47.8 billion.

The growth of exports, which account for almost half of the gross domestic product (GDP) of Asia’s fourth largest economy, was slightly below analysts’ expectations despite seeming to consolidate the economy’s recovery.

By segment, overseas shipments of chips, South Korea’s main export, rose 24.5 percent year-on-year in May to reach $10 billion.

In turn, automobile exports jumped 93.7 percent and those of petrochemical products increased by 94.9 percent.

By destination, South Korea’s exports to China and the United States, two countries where 40 percent of all South Korean exports are sent, expanded 22.7 percent and 62.8 percent respectively.

In turn, exports to the European Union climbed 62.8 percent year-on-year.

On account of the recovery of South Korea’s exports, the Bank of Korea last week improved its growth forecast for the country for 2021 by one percentage point to 4 percent. EFE

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