South Korea's trade surplus narrowed to USD 2.02 billion in December 2019 from USD 4.18 billion in the same month a year earlier, preliminary data showed. This was the smallest trade surplus since August, as exports tumbled 5.2 percent, largely due to the US-China conflict, but fell less compared to an annual 14.4 percent decline in November. Meanwhile, imports dropped at a softer much softer pace of 0.7 percent compared to a 13.0 percent plunge in the previous month. Considering 2019 full year, the trade surplus narrowed sharply to USD 39.19 billion from USD 69.66 billion in 2018.

Balance of Trade in South Korea averaged 1094.99 USD Million from 1966 until 2019, reaching an all time high of 13419.36 USD Million in September of 2017 and a record low of -4043.46 USD Million in January of 2008. This page provides the latest reported value for - South Korea Balance of Trade - plus previous releases, historical high and low, short-term forecast and long-term prediction, economic calendar, survey consensus and news. source: Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy (MOTIE)

Balance of Trade in South Korea is expected to be 3500.00 USD Million by the end of this quarter, according to Trading Economics global macro models and analysts expectations. Looking forward, we estimate Balance of Trade in South Korea to stand at 5800.00 in 12 months time. In the long-term, the South Korea Balance of Trade is projected to trend around 5800.00 USD Million in 2020, according to our econometric models.


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South Korea Balance of Trade

Actual Previous Highest Lowest Dates Unit Frequency
2017.00 3336.48 13419.36 -4043.46 1966 - 2019 USD Million Monthly

Calendar GMT Actual Previous Consensus TEForecast
2019-10-01 12:00 AM Sep $5.97B $1.65B $5.4B
2019-11-01 12:00 AM Oct $5.39B $5.98B $3.506B $3.8B
2019-12-01 12:00 AM Nov $3.37B $5.34B $4.2B
2020-01-01 12:00 AM Dec $2.02B $3.34B $3.3B
2020-02-01 12:00 AM Jan $2.02B $1.5B


News Stream
2019-12-01
South Korea Posts Smallest Trade Surplus in 3 Months
South Korea's trade surplus narrowed to USD 3.37 billion in November 2019 from USD 4.67 billion in the same month a year earlier, preliminary data showed. This was the smallest trade surplus since August, as exports tumbled 14.3 percent, largely due due to the US-China conflict, and an extended plunge in semiconductor prices. Meanwhile, imports dropped at a softer 13.0 percent.

2019-11-01
South Korea Trade Surplus Narrows in October
South Korea's trade surplus narrowed to USD 5.39 billion in October 2019 from USD 6.38 billion in the same month a year earlier and compared to market expectations of a 3.51 billion surplus, preliminary data showed. Exports tumbled 14.7 percent, the biggest fall in nearly four years, largely due to the US-China conflict, as well as the stagnant semiconductor sector and a slowdown in the global economy. Meanwhile, imports dropped 14.6 percent.

2019-10-01
South Korea Trade Surplus Narrows Sharply
South Korea's trade surplus narrowed to USD 5.97 billion in September 2019 from USD 9.62 billion in the same month a year earlier, a preliminary data showed. Exports tumbled 11.7 percent amid deteriorating external conditions, including the US-China trade tensions. Meanwhile, imports dropped 5.6 percent. Considering the first nine months of 2019, the trade surplus narrowed sharply to USD 28.80 billion from USD 54.43 billion in the corresponding period the prior year.

2019-09-01
South Korea Trade Surplus Smallest in 7 Months
South Korea's trade surplus plunged to USD 1.72 billion in August 2019 from USD 6.82 billion in the same month a year earlier, a preliminary data showed. This was the smallest trade surplus since January, as exports tumbled 13.6 percent amid deteriorating external conditions, including the US-China trade tensions and disputes with Japan. Meanwhile, imports slumped 4.2 percent. Considering the first eight months of 2019, the trade surplus narrowed sharply to USD 23.16 billion from USD 44.81 billion in the corresponding period the prior year.

2019-08-01
South Korea Trade Surplus Narrows as Exports Slump
South Korea's trade surplus narrowed sharply to USD 2.44 billion in July 2019 from USD 6.89 billion in the same month last year as exports tumbled 11 percent on the back of US-China trade dispute and Japan's exports restrictions, while imports declined at a softer 2.7 percent. Considering January to July, the trade surplus shrank to USD 21.64 billion from USD 37.99 billion in the same period of 2018.

2019-06-30
South Korea Trade Surplus Narrows Sharply in June
South Korea’s trade surplus narrowed to USD 4.17 billion in June 2019 from USD 6.08 billion in the same month a year earlier, a preliminary data showed, as exports fell more than imports, amid weakening global demand. Exports declined 13.5 percent year-on-year to USD 44.18 billion, worse than market consensus of a 12 percent decrease and faster than an upwardly revised 9.5 percent fall in May. Imports dropped 11.1 percent to USD 40.01 billion, accelerating from a marginally revised 1.8 percent fall in the previous month and compared with market consensus of a 10.1 percent decline. For the first half of the year, the trade surplus narrowed sharply to USD 19.5 billion from USD 37.2 billion in the corresponding period of 2018, as exports fell 8.4 percent on year to USD 271.5 billion while imports declined at a softer 5.1 percent to USD 252 billion.


South Korea Balance of Trade
Since 2009 South Korea has been recording trade surpluses due to exports growth. The country exports mainly machinery and transport equipment, oil, iron, steel and plastics while it imports oil, electrical machinery, natural gas and food. Main trading partners are: China (26 percent of total exports and 21 percent of total imports) and the United States (13 percent of exports and 10 percent of imports). Others include: Japan, ASEAN countries and Germany.

South Korea Trade Last Previous Highest Lowest Unit
Balance of Trade 2017.00 3336.48 13419.36 -4043.46 USD Million [+]
Current Account 5974.80 7827.20 12409.70 -3845.00 USD Million [+]
Current Account to GDP 4.70 4.90 10.70 -10.50 percent [+]
Imports 43699.00 40716.86 48480.62 38.61 USD Million [+]
Exports 45716.00 44053.33 55115.24 14.75 USD Million [+]
External Debt 458199.90 462061.90 462061.90 80766.40 USD Million [+]
Terms of Trade 90.80 91.40 228.10 82.90 points [+]
Foreign Direct Investment 9844064.00 3612508.00 10820073.00 0.00 USD Thousand [+]
Capital Flows 5336.40 10227.60 12350.90 -3406.90 USD Million [+]
Tourism Revenues 1627000.00 1788400.00 1788400.00 326500.00 USD Million [+]
Tourist Arrivals 1456429.00 1656195.00 1703495.00 213006.00 [+]
Gold Reserves 104.45 104.40 104.45 13.00 Tonnes [+]
Weapons Sales 1083.00 751.00 1083.00 7.00 USD Million [+]
Terrorism Index 0.30 0.29 2.62 0.00 [+]