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Semiconductor exports hit record high in 2017

SEOUL: Exports of semiconductors produced by Korean firms reached a record high last year on soaring prices and firm demand, customs data showed on Friday. The outbound shipment of chips reached $99.71 billion last year, sharply up 60.2 percent from the $62.23 billion tallied a year earlier, according to the data compiled by the Korea Customs Service. The 2017 tally ... Read More »

Korean regulators to probe bank AML measures for Crypto exchanges

SEOUL: South Korea financial regulators are reportedly launching a probe into domestic banks over their implementation of anti-money laundering procedures for cryptocurrency exchanges. According to a report from Yonhap, the Financial Intelligence Unit and Financial Services Commission (FSC) will launch the inspection starting next month at banks offering corporate accounts to cryptocurrency exchanges. The investigation, according to the report, follows a previous mandate from ... Read More »

Korea coffee market grows to 512 cups per person

SEOUL: Korea’s domestic coffee market surpassed 10 trillion won in 2017 for the first time ever as demand for the brew continues to rise, market data showed. According to the Korea Customs Service (KCS), the country’s coffee market stood at 11.7 trillion won (US$10.8 billion), up more than threefold from around the middle 3 trillion won level a decade earlier. ... Read More »

Korea’s overseas direct purchases hit record high in 2017

SEOUL: Koreans’ direct purchases from foreign countries rose to a record high last year on rising demand for cheaper and different products, customs data showed on March 20. A total of US$2.11 billion worth of foreign goods was directly bought by Korean shoppers via overseas internet shopping malls last year, up 29.1 percent from a year earlier, according to the ... Read More »

South korea adopts new poultry imports policy POLICY

SEOUL: South Korean Ministry of Agriculture has adopted a new regionalization policy that is good news for the U.S. poultry and egg industry. The new policy prevents a countrywide ban on U.S. exports to Korea in the event of a future finding of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza. Should a case be found in the future, only exports from each affected ... Read More »

South Korea adopts regionalisation policy limiting potential restrictions on US poultry exports

SEOUL: As a result, should a case be found, only exports from the affected state(s) will be restricted, allowing the rest of the US to continue shipping poultry and egg products to the Korean market. “The US has one of the most stringent surveillance, eradication and monitoring programs in the world when it comes to avian disease,” said National Chicken ... Read More »

South Korea fuel oil imports soar as coal nuclear plants shut

SEOUL: South Korea’s move to shut coal-fired generators to control air pollution at the same time as nuclear reactors are going into scheduled maintenance is resulting in surging fuel oil imports, as utilities burn the dirty feedstock to meet power demand. South Korea’s trade ministry said in February it would suspend five coal-fired power plants, with a combined capacity of ... Read More »

South Korea’s February crude imports from Iran drop over 30 percent

SEOUL:  South Korea’s crude oil imports from Iran dropped 31.2 percent in February from a year ago to 1.12 million tonnes, or 294,274 barrels per day (bpd), customs data showed on Thursday. The nation’s imports of Iranian oil have faltered in the wake of a technical problem at Iran’s South Pars field last year and after an Iranian oil tanker ... Read More »

South Korea’s Feb ethanol imports jump 14% on month

SEOUL: South Korea’s ethanol imports rose 14% month on month to 26,255 mt in February, according to Korea Customs Service data released Tuesday. The imports in February were up by 87.58% year on year from 13,997 mt in February 2017. The import volume of undenatured ethanol fell 35.52% from January to 7,054 mt in February. Pakistan was the biggest supplier ... Read More »

KDB kicks off due diligence on GM Korea to decide funding and tax grants

SEOUL: Korea Development Bank (KDB) on Monday embarked on due diligence on GM Korea to study its cost structure before determining whether to grant financial aid and tax breaks to help keep Korea’s third largest automaker in business. “We have reached a general consensus on due diligence conditions although there still are some differences in opinion,” KDB Chairman Lee Dong-gull ... Read More »

Exports may keep Korean economy climbing

SEOUL: Korea’s economy is expected to maintain its current recovery pace going forward on the back of brisk exports, a government report said Friday. However, a weaker job market and ongoing trade issues are likely to weigh on Asia’s fourth-largest economy, the finance ministry said in its monthly economic assessment report. “Investments are continuing to be helped by sound exports, ... Read More »

South Korea says exports recovery to continue uncertain trade environment

SEOUL:  South Korea’s exports will continue to recover along with factory production and investment activity, even as uncertainties related to trade and monetary policy remain, the finance ministry said on Friday. Exports to Europe and China are robust as demand for semiconductors and electronic components lifts overall shipments from South Korea, the ministry said in its monthly assessment of the ... Read More »

South Korea labor code overhaul cuts maximum workweek

SEOUL: Calculation of maximum weekly work hours, overtime provisions, and treatment of public holidays in South Korea are to change under amendments to the Labor Standards Act approved by the South Korean parliament Feb. 28. Under the amendments, a week is defined as seven days including holidays with a maximum workweek of 40 regular hours per seven-day week plus 12 ... Read More »

South Korea to request exemption from U.S. steel tariffs

SEOUL:  South Korea will request an exemption from heavy tariffs that the United States is expected to impose on imports of foreign steel. Seoul’s trade ministry said Tuesday that Trade Minister Kim Hyun-chong sent a letter to U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to exclude South Korea from import restriction measures under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion The ministry did not reveal further details except that ... Read More »

South Korea’s Kim says global trade dispute is expanding

SEOUL: Says that trade friction is a rising risk to the South Korean economyPlans to appeal South Korea’s interest to the US at G20 meeting later this monthGovernment to focus on diversifying exports strategiesMore responses flooding in on the trade front. I would expect more of this to come, even after Trump’s little threat over the weekend here. And if the ... Read More »

South Korea Feb export growth slowest since ’16

SEOUL:Korea’s export growth slowed in February to its weakest in more than a year, government data showed yesterday, showing the effects of a long Lunar New year holiday and a slip in overseas demand for some Korean goods. The 4% year-on-year increase in exports was the slowest expansion since November 2016 and deeply underperforms a 22.3% jump in January, but ... Read More »

S Korean Kogas 2017 LNG imports rise 4% on year to 33m

SEOUL: South Korean state-owned Korea Gas Corp.’s LNG imports rose 3.8% to 33.064 million mt in 2017 from 31.846 million mt the year before, a company official said Thursday. This marks the second consecutive annual increase in the country’s LNG imports after two years of declines, and comes as the country’s domestic LNG demand is expected to increase on the ... Read More »

S. Korea to swiftly discuss normalization plan for GM Korea

SEOUL: South Korea’s top financial regulator said Tuesday the government will swiftly proceed with negotiations with General Motors Co. on a turnaround plan, including the government’s potential support measures, for the U.S. carmaker’s troubled local unit. Choi Jong-ku, chairman of the Financial Services Commission, told lawmakers that due diligence on GM Korea will be conducted without delay. Earlier this month, ... Read More »

South Korea’s Iran crude oil import in January down 47.3

SEOUL: South Korea’s crude oil imports from Iran fell 47.3 percent in January from a year earlier, while its total crude oil imports rose 6.6 percent year on year to 99.8 million barrels last month, data from state-run Korea National Oil Corp (KNOC) showed on Monday. Details of some of the biggest crude exporters to South Korea in January compared ... Read More »

S. Korea to consider tax benefits for GM depending on investment plan

SEOUL:  South Korea will decide whether to provide tax benefits for General Motors Co.’s Korean unit after looking into its new investment plans, including the allocation of new models for production, a senior government official said Monday. GM plans to close its underutilized Gunsan factory in the country’s southwest by May, saying it will decide the fate of its three ... Read More »