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Korean Economy All Alone in Recession

Posted December. 15, 2004 22:54,   


This year’s economic growth rate of South Korea is estimated to be below those of its Asian competitors, far short of the average growth rate of Asia.

The situation is not expected to look better next year either. The Korean economy is expected to fall behind seriously, the only country to suffer a slowdown.

According to the LG Economic Research Institute’s analysis on the growth rate indices released by the U.N. and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), South Korea’s estimated growth rate this year is only 4.7 percent, far lower than the 7.7 percent (estimated) average growth rate of Asian countries excluding Japan.

Of all Asian competitors, China is expected to have the highest growth rate this year, recording 9.3 percent. The growth rates of Asian nations are as follows: Singapore (8.4 percent); India (7.3 percent); Hong Kong (7.0 percent); Malaysia (6.9 percent) and Taiwan (6.3 percent). All of them are expected to have much higher rates than that of South Korea, and Russia is also expected to record 7.0 percent.

The analysis also says that even next year, the growth rate of South Korea will likely be far below those of other Asian competitors.

The institute forecasted that the average growth rate of the Asian region would be 6.9 percent. The expected growth rates by countries are as follows: China (8.0 percent); India (6.2 percent); Taiwan (4.7 percent); Malaysia (4.6 percent); Hong Kong (4.4 percent); and Singapore (4.3 percent). In the meantime, the Bank of Korea expects the growth rate of South Korea to be 4.0 percent next year, while LG Economic Institute expects it to be 3.8 percent, far below those of Asian competitors.

Joong-Hyun Park sanjuck@donga.com