Korea’s exports of industrial parts and materials surged to a record high in the first quarter thank
Korea’s exports of industrial parts and materials surged to a record high in the first quarter thanks to greater global competitiveness and Chinese demand, a government report said yesterday.
The report by the Ministry of Knowledge Economy said the nation’s exports jumped 54.8 percent on-year to $51.7 billion, marking the highest-ever quarterly tally.
It was the first time since 1994, when the government started compiling figures in this sector, that parts and materials made up more than half of all industrial goods shipped out in a three-month period.
In the January-March period, the country’s overall exports of manufactured goods increased 36.3 percent from a year ago to $101.4 billion as the worldwide economy showed signs of bouncing back from sluggish growth.
Imports of parts rose 37.5 percent from the previous year to $34.0 billion for a record quarterly trade surplus of $17.7 billion.
The ministry attributed the rise in the exports to strong overseas demand for auto parts, semiconductors and other electronic components.
Memory chip exports rose 179.9 percent on-year, while Auto Parts moved up 110.0 percent. Outbound shipments of car engines and integrated circuit semiconductors grew by triple digits.
The latest report showed the country posting a trade surplus with most countries, although its chronic deficit with Japan increased to $5.6 billion from $4.3 billion in the first quarter of last year. The trade surplus with China in this sector, meanwhile, doubled to $11.5 billion from the year before, as Beijing maintained its economic policy of fueling its domestic economy and spurring industrial production.
During the reported period, the Korean parts industry posted a trade surplus of $2.3 billion with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, while its trade surplus with the United States and European countries reached $600 million and $100 million, respectively.