SEJONG, Sept. 11 (Yonhap) — South Korea’s exports fell 0.2 percent on-year in the first 10 days of September amid the economic fallout from the new coronavirus, customs data showed Friday.
The nation’s outbound shipments stood at US$14.9 billion in the Sept. 1-10 period, compared with $15 billion a year ago, according to the data from the Korea Customs Service.
The daily average exports during the 10-day period dropped 11.9 percent.
The coronavirus pandemic has disrupted trade and halted production around the globe, with a rising number of countries fully closing their borders.
Imports declined 7.6 percent on-year to $13 billion in the 10-day period, according to the data.
By segment, exports of memory chips, a key item, jumped 43.2 percent, and those of automobiles rose 8.4 percent on-year in the 10-day period.
Semiconductors account for about one-fifth of outbound shipments in South Korea, home to Samsung Electronics Co., the world’s largest memory chip maker, and its smaller rival SK hynix Inc.
By country, shipments to China — South Korea’s largest trading partner — gained 9.7 percent on-year, and shipments to the United States rose 5.2 percent.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has predicted that South Korea’s economy could shrink 1.2 percent this year, as the global economy is expected to have its worst year since the Great Depression of the 1930s due to the pandemic.
The world economy is expected to contract 6 percent this year, the OECD said.