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S. Korea's exports rise 3.1% in March, surplus for ten months

Photo by CHUTTERSNAP / Unsplash

Seoul, South Korea—Government data showed Monday that South Korea's exports rose 3.1% to $56.56 billion in March from a year earlier, extending gains for a sixth straight month despite 1.5 fewer working days.

Data from the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Energy showed that semiconductor exports hit $11.7 billion, up 35.7% from a year earlier and the highest monthly total since June 2022.

Shipments to the United States jumped 11.6% to a record $10.91 billion for any March on strong auto and machinery sales, while those to China rose 0.4% to $10.52 billion.

Imports fell 12.3% to $52.28 billion, turning the trade surplus to $4.28 billion from a deficit of $4.77 billion a year earlier.

It was the tenth consecutive monthly surplus.

For the first quarter, exports rose 8.3% from a year earlier to $163.7 billion, while the trade surplus turned to $9 billion from a deficit of $22.8 billion in the same period.

"Exports are leading the growth of our economy, with the trade balance improving by more than $30 billion year-on-year in the first quarter," Minister Ahn Duk-Geun said in the press release.

The ministry expects solid export growth to continue in the second quarter, driven by strong sales of chips, automobiles, machinery, and ships, while the trade balance will remain in surplus.

However, some observers warned that the recovery remains vulnerable to sluggish global growth and supply chain risks.

Articles on “South Korea Trade”