South Korea’s exports in the first 10 days of February showed a whopping rebound against a year-ago period with fewer working days. But whether the month can snap a 14-month-long losing streak is yet to be seen, given the impact on shipments from the spread of a novel coronavirus disease that stopped production at Korean carmakers and other factory lines.
The country’s exports from February 1 to 10 totaled $10.7 billion, up 69.4 percent from the same period last year, according to data released by the Korea Customs Service on Tuesday. The sharp uptick owed largely to three more working days compared to last year with changes in dates of Lunar New Year holidays. Average daily exports fell 3.2 percent to $1.53 billion with the number of working days factored out.
Automobile exports jumped 114.5 percent on year during the Feb. 1-10 period. Exports of semiconductors rose 37.8 percent, wireless communication devices 34.8 percent, and petroleum products 26.2 percent. But outbound shipments of display panels sank 39.5 percent on year.
By country, exports to China grew 36 percent, the United States 68.1 percent, Vietnam 59.8 percent, the European Union 170.4 percent, Japan 28.9 percent, Hong Kong 130.1 percent, and the Middle East 63 percent.
Imports in the first 10 days of February gained 24 percent on year to $12.0 billion, leading to a trade deficit of $1.3 billion.
Gas imports hiked 48.7 percent on year, info/communication devices 22.3 percent, and automobiles 108.4 percent. On the other hand, crude oil imports declined 13.3 percent, gas 1.8 percent, and coal 23.9 percent.
Imports from the U.S. soared 82.8 percent, the EU 86.8 percent, Japan 42.9 percent, and Vietnam 37.5 percent.
By Cho Jeehyun
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]