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Key export items stumble amid the 600-billion-dollar exports era

Key export items stumble amid the 600-billion-dollar exports era

Posted December. 29, 2018 07:32,   

Updated December. 29, 2018 07:32


Korea is the 7th country in the world to exceed 600 billion dollars in annual exports. Korea has entered into the lines of global trade powerhouses, but there are concerns that it would become a 'faded report card' as the trading conditions are worsening due to the effect of high oil prices, and the downturn of key items.

The Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Energy and the Korea Customs Service announced that the annual cumulative export exceeded 600 billion dollars at 11:12 a.m. on Friday. It has been seven years since the 500-billion-dollar mark was achieved in 2011.

Now South Korea is the 7th country to exceed 600 billion dollars in exports following the U.S., Germany, China, Japan, the Netherlands, and France. As of September, Korea ranked 6th place in terms of exports, and it hit a historic high, accounting for 3.4 percent of the world's exports.

It took 23 years for Korea to become the fourth fastest in the world, achieving its exports of 600 billion dollars from 100 billion dollars. Annual exports that merely reached 19 million dollars in 1948 grew 30,194 folds in the past 69 years to reach 573.7 billion dollars in 2017.

Such positive export figures are owing to the strong worldwide demand for key export items such as general machinery and petrochemicals. However, there are several unfavorable factors such as the trade war between the U.S. and China and the slowdown in the growth of key countries. According to Bank of Korea, last month's trade index for Korean products dropped 10.9 percent year-on-year to 90.49. This is the lowest number in four years and one month since October 2014.

Jun-Il Kim jikim@donga.com