S. Korea posts trade surplus for 14 straight months in March

South Korea logged a trade surplus for 14 straight months in March despite the prolonged economic slump, customs data showed Monday.

According to the customs-clearance trade figures provided by the Korea Customs Service, South Korea's exports advanced 0.2 percent on-year to US$ 47.4 billion last month. In contrast, imports shed 2 percent to $ 44.1 billion.

The country's March trade surplus came to $ 3.3 billion, expanding from $ 2 billion tallied a month earlier. The export growth in March was driven mostly by increased overseas shipments of chemical products, mobile devices, and semiconductor chips, which saw sales rise 8.9 percent, 3 percent, and 7 percent from a year earlier, respectively.

In contrast, sales of ships and automobiles decreased 14.4 percent and 10.5 percent, respectively, over the cited period.

By: region, exports bound for China, Southeast Asian countries, and Latin American countries increased 6 percent, 8.3 percent, and 4.2 percent, while those for the United States and Japan moved down 16.1 percent and 18.2 percent, respectively.

South Korea's cumulative exports during the first three months of this year totaled $ 135.5 billion, and imports came to $ 129.7 billion. Its three-month cumulative trade surplus stood at $ 5.8 billion, the data showed.

Philippines News agency