The Korea Herald


Economy's downward pressure eased as exports show recovery signs

By Yonhap

Published : July 14, 2023 - 10:44

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Shoppers purchase groceries at a supermarket in Seoul on Wednesday. (Yonhap) Shoppers purchase groceries at a supermarket in Seoul on Wednesday. (Yonhap)

South Korea's economy is experiencing eased downward pressures on the back of improving exports, the finance ministry said Friday, although the country still faces an ongoing economic slowdown.

"(The economy's) downward pressures are easing on the back of partial recovery of the sluggish exports, sound domestic consumption, improved economic sentiment and robust employments," the Ministry of Economy and Finance said in a report.

The ministry nevertheless mentioned an economic slowdown in the monthly assessment report, the Green Book, for the sixth consecutive month.

"The South Korean economy is currently encountering a slowdown driven by the manufacturing sector, although there is an indication of inflation easing as well," it added.

In June, South Korea reported a trade surplus for the first time in 16 months, but its outbound shipments fell for the ninth consecutive month due mainly to weak demand for semiconductors.

Outbound shipments fell 6 percent on-year to $54.24 billion last month, which marked the smallest on-year export decline so far this year, possibly indicating that exports may rebound in the second half of this year.

South Korea's consumer price growth also slowed for the fifth straight month in June, falling below 3 percent for the first time in 21 months at 2.7 percent.

The country's job additions remained stronger than expected in June as well -- adding 333,000 from a year earlier -- although the rise was mostly led by seniors.

South Korea's manufacturing output, however, fell 7.3 percent on-year in May, the latest data available, due to the slump in the chip sector. The output, however, edged up 3.2 percent on-month.

The report further noted that while there are hopes for the recovery of the information technology industry and the reopening of the Chinese economy, factors such as global monetary tightening and the war between Russia and Ukraine could potentially impede the economic rebound. (Yonhap)