South Korea’s trade deficit with Japan is expected to sink to a 16-year low in 2019 due to a tumble in imports, data showed Nov. 18.
Seoul posted a trade deficit of $16.37 billion with Tokyo in the first 10 months of this year, down 20.6 percent from a year earlier, according to the data from the industry and Trade Ministry and the Korea International Trade Association.
It marks the lowest trade deficit with the neighboring country for the January-October period since the red ink of $15.57 billion in 2003.
Given the current trend, South Korea’s trade deficit with the neighboring country is tipped to hover below the $20 billion mark for the whole of this year and reach its lowest level since the $19.04 billion posted in 2003.
The sharp drop in this year’s trade deficit with Japan came as imports fell much faster than exports.
South Korean imports plunged 12.8 percent on-year during the 10-month period, while exports shrank 6.5 percent.
The faster drop in imports resulted mainly from weaker demand from Samsung Electronics and SK hynix for chip parts and equipment amid a global slump in the memory-chip business.
By Ram Garikipati and newswires (firstname.lastname@example.org)