January 30, 2023

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South Korean exports fall 2.7% in Jan 1-20 period By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A truck drives between shipping containers at a container terminal at Incheon port in Incheon, South Korea, May 26, 2016. REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji/File Photo

SEOUL (Reuters) – South Korea’s exports for the first 20 days of January fell 2.7% from a year earlier, but the pace of drop was slower than that recorded in December, customs data showed on Saturday.

In December, South Korean exports fell 9.0% on-year during the first 20 days and declined 9.6% for the full month, as global demand cooled after a wave of aggressive policy tightening to contain inflation.

For the first 20 days of January, exports to China fell 24.4%, whereas shipments to the United States rose 18.1%, the Korea Customs Service data showed.

Imports over Jan. 1-20 rose by 9.3% on-year, bringing South Korea’s trade deficit to $10.26 billion over the period.

For December, the trade deficit was $4.69 billion.

South Korea’s government expects overseas sales in 2023 to fall 4.5%, after a 6.1% gain in 2022, but the trade ministry has vowed to do all it can to achieve growth in exports.