South Korea’s January export volume posts decline

Seoul, Feb 23 (IANS) South Korea’s export volume posted the biggest monthly decline in almost seven years in January, boosting widespread worries about the export-driven economy, central bank data showed on Tuesday.

The export volume index stood at 121.67 in January, down 7.4 percent from a year earlier, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK).

It marked the biggest fall since May 2009 when the global financial crisis dampened the global economy, including South Korea, Xinhua reported.

The export volume drop came amid growing concerns that the South Korean economy, which depend on exports for about half of its growth, may falter further due to the weakening of global demand and geopolitical risks on the Korean peninsula.

The import volume index came in at 114.04 in January, down 5.9 percent from a year earlier. It was the fastest fall in more than six years.

In terms of value, exports tumbled 17.8 percent in January on a yearly basis, with imports plunging 20.9 percent.

The net terms-of-trade index for goods came to 101.34 in January, up 5.6 percent from a year ago thanks to faster fall in imports than exports.

The index gauges how many products can be imported with money earned from an export unit.

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