South Korean IT exports bounce to decade-high US$17b in April

Business | 17 May 2021 12:28 pm

South Korea's exports of information and communication technology (ICT) products increased by more than 30 percent last month -- the sharpest rise in over 10 years -- on the back of robust global demand for chips and displays, data showed Monday, Yonhap reports.

Outbound shipments of ICT products were estimated at US$17.06 billion in April, the highest-ever amount for any April and a rise of 32.6 percent from a year earlier, according to data from the Ministry of Science and ICT.

The latest data marked the 11th consecutive month of on-year gains and the sharpest rise in ICT exports since April 2010.

Last month, imports reached US$10.78 billion, up by 21.5 percent from a year earlier, resulting in a trade surplus of US$6.29 billion.

By segment, semiconductor exports in April rose 29.4 percent on-year to US$9.4 billion thanks to strong demand for memory and logic chips.

Outbound shipments of memory chips grew by 18.8 percent to US$5.93 billion over the cited period, while logic chips jumped 59 percent to US$2.94 billion.

Display shipments surged 35.1 percent to US$1.67 billion on a robust appetite for organic light-emitting diodes (OLED) used in smartphones.

OLED exports vaulted 57.5 percent to US$840 million, while liquid crystal display (LCD) shipments gained 13.1 percent to US$500 million.

Exports of mobile phones and related parts nearly doubled, growing 89.7 percent on-year to $1.24 billion.

The ministry said that shipments of mobile phone parts to China increased by 145 percent, while exports of mobile phones to the European Union jumped by 374.6 percent.

By destination, shipments to China, South Korea's largest trading partner, grew by 21.6 percent on-year to US$8.04 billion, rising for the eighth consecutive month, thanks to demand for chips, displays and mobile phones.

Exports to Vietnam soared by 67 percent to US$2.39 billion, while those to the United States gained 25.2 percent to US$2.13 billion on the back of demand for mobile phones and rechargeable batteries.

South Korea's total exports last month advanced by 41.1 percent from a year earlier to US$51.19 billion.


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