South Korea’s Import Volume Index Sharply Rises in August

Seoul, – South Korea’s imports increased sharply in August in both quantity and value, led by the machinery and chemical sectors, the central bank data showed Monday.

The import volume index jumped 7.5% to 124.58 in the month from a year earlier, marking the largest growth since late 2014, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK). It’s a 5.6% rise from 117.94 recorded in July, state news agency (Yonhap) reported. By item, the imports of machinery and chemical products rose 22.7% and 18.9% on-year, respectively.

Metal, coal, petrochemical, fabric and leather products also recorded around 10% growth in import volume. “The imports of semiconductor- and display-related machinery expanded sharply last month,” a BOK official said. “The outlook that the businesses will get better next year seems to have been reflected”.

The import value index also grew 0.7% to 98.77 in August from a year earlier. It’s the first time for the index to post an on-year rise in two years. In July, the index shrank 13.1% from the same period in 2015. The BOK official said it’s partly attributable to a slowed drop in global oil prices.

On the export side, the volume continued to expand in August with the value still declining. The export volume index gained 3.9% on-year to 131.15, spurred by more exports of agricultural and petrochemical products, as well as precision machines.

The export value index came to 105.31, down 1.4% from August last year, but it was the lowest drop in 20 months.

Source: Qatar News Agency