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SEJONG, Sept. 9 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's exports of information technology (IT) products rose from a year earlier in August, continuing their on-year growth for the 12th consecutive month, the government said Monday.
Outbound shipments of IT products reached US$14.5 billion last month, up 11.4 percent from the same period last year, according to the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning.
The country's trade surplus in the IT sector widened to $8.13 billion, the second highest in the country's history, as its imports only gained 2.6 percent on-year to $6.36 billion.
The ministry attributed the growth in exports to a large increase in outbound shipments of smartphones and semiconductors.
"Exports of mobile phones posted an on-year growth for the 12th consecutive month as shipments of smartphones jumped 22.2 percent on-year to $860 million," it said in a press release.
Shipments of semiconductors also spiked 22 percent on-year to $4.99 billion, partly on a 46.6 percent spike in shipments of memory chips. Exports of television sets jumped 40.7 percent to $880 million, according to the ministry.
By nation, the country's exports of IT products to the United States surged 32 percent on-year to $1.36 billion with shipments to the 10-member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations jumping 28.4 percent to $1.84 billion.
Shipments to China, the largest importer of South Korean IT products, gained 9.6 percent on-year to $7.44 billion.
Meanwhile, the ministry said the country's accumulated IT exports in the first eight months of the year reached a record high of $109.8 billion, up 10.8 percent from the same period last year, with its trade surplus also rising to a new high of $57.5 billion over the cited period.
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