The Korea Herald


Korea’s air transport deficit marks record high

By Shim Woo-hyun

Published : Sept. 3, 2017 - 15:05

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South Korea’s air transport deficit marked a record high in the first six months of this year, largely due to a dramatic decline in Chinese tourists, as well as an increase in the number of Koreans traveling outside of the country, central bank data showed Sunday.

The deficit of Korea’s air transport reached $248.6 million between January and June. In the previous six-month period, the figure had reached a surplus of $216.7 million, according to data compiled by the Bank of Korea.

(Yonhap) (Yonhap)

Korean air carriers’ revenue from foreign passengers decreased by 7.3 percent on-year to reach $1.69 billion, while the earnings of foreign air carriers from Korean passengers increased by 12.7 percent to $1.36 billion.

The latest deficit marked the lowest level since 2006, when the BOK started to collect the related data.

The decrease is largely due to a decline in the number of Chinese tourists to Korea, which started in March with Beijing’s alleged restrictions on travel packages bound for the country.

The number of Chinese travelers visiting Korea dropped by 41 percent on-year to reach 2.25 million in the first half, according to the Korea Tourism Organization.

By Shim Woo-hyun (