Inter-Korean trade nearly doubles to $200m in March

According to Yonhap:

Trade between South and North Korea nearly doubled last month compared with a year ago amid a nascent economic recovery in the South, a government report showed Wednesday.

Inter-Korean trade jumped 88.5 percent from a year ago to US$204.03 million in March, according to the report by the Korea Customs Service. Compared with two years ago, before the South Korean economy was hit by the global financial crisis, trade between the two Koreas rose 29.7 percent in the reported month.

South Korea imports a range of labor-intensive goods such as clothes and watches from the joint Kaesong industrial complex in North Korea, as well as seafood and some agricultural produce. North Korea imports textiles such as cotton and other staple fabrics, along with electronics products including computers and machinery.

South Korea’s outbound shipments to the North came to $84.36 million while its imports from the communist country amounted to $119.67 million. This marked the highest trade deficit for the South in 17 months at $35.31 million, the report said.

The surge came on the back of an economic turnaround in the South. Inter-Korean trade did not seem to be affected by ongoing political tensions on the Korean Peninsula.

During the first quarter of this year, two-way trade soared 64.3 percent from a year earlier to $526.72 million, it said.

Bilateral trade has increased steadily over the past decade from $328.65 million in 1999 to $651.68 million in 2002 and surpassing the $1 billion mark for the first time in 2005.

Inter-Korean trade reached $1.79 billion in 2007 and peaked at $1.82 billion the following year before falling slightly to $1.66 billion last year.

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Inter-Korean trade nearly doubles to $200 mln in March


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