SEOUL, March 14 (Yonhap) — South Korea’s exports to the United States have jumped a whopping 26 percent since the implementation of their bilateral trade agreement in 2012, data showed Sunday, expanding at a faster pace compared with other global counterparts.

Asia’s No. 4 economy’s exports to the U.S. reached US$74.1 billion in 2020, compared with $58.5 billion posted in 2012, according to the data compiled by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy.

The two countries’ free trade agreement (FTA) went into effect in 2012.

Over the period, South Korea’s combined outbound shipments edged up 6.4 percent.

Around 84 percent of products traded with the U.S. enjoyed benefits from the FTA, which also marked a sharp rise from 79 percent posted in 2015, the latest available data.

Exports to the United States advanced 1.1 percent on-year in 2020, while South Korea’s overall exports dipped 5.5 percent amid the COVID-19 pandemic, led mostly by chips and computer products.

Outbound shipments of chips to the U.S. jumped 25.3 percent on-year in 2020, while that of computers doubled as more people worked from home.

South Korean products accounted for 3.3 percent of the U.S. market last year, advancing 0.2 percentage point from 2019, the ministry data also showed.

In 2020, the combined amount of investment pledges made by U.S. companies here reached $5.3 billion, falling 22.6 percent on-year amid the economic fallout from the virus pandemic. It marked the first on-year decrease since 2016.

From 2012 to 2020, the amount came to $42.9 billion, which doubled from $19.8 billion posted in the earlier nine-year period.