SEOUL, July 27 (Korea Bizwire) — The South Korean economy’s dependence on Japan has been on a downward trend since Japan imposed export restrictions against South Korea in July 2019, the country’s leading business lobby group said Sunday.
The share of imports from Japan among overall South Korean imports fell from 9.8 percent in Q1 2019 to 9.5 percent in Q2 and Q3 and 9 percent in Q4, according to a report from the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI).
In contrast, the nation’s materials and parts industries, the sectors targeted by Japan’s export restrictions, saw the share of Japanese imports rise slightly from 15.7 percent to 16 percent over the same period.
In other words, South Korea’s imports from Japan were hit hard in other industries rather than in the material and parts industries for which Japan imposed export restrictions.
South Korea’s imports from Japan amounted to about US$47.6 billion last year. The share of imports from Japan among South Korea’s total imports ($503.3 billion) stood at 9.5 percent.
The KCCI said that it was the first time for the share of imports from Japan to fall to a single-digit figure since South Korea started compiling trade statistics in 1964.
In the meantime, a survey conducted jointly by the KCCI and the state-run Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency found that Japan’s export restrictions had no direct impact on South Korean companies.
The joint survey was conducted with data from 302 South Korean companies that are doing business with Japan. Among the respondents, 84 percent said that they had not been adversely affected by Japan’s export restrictions.
M. H. Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org)