SEOUL, June 22 (Korea Bizwire) – South Korean business groups saw their overseas sales drop last year as low oil prices and a prolonged economic slowdown have shrunk demands in major markets, industry data showed Wednesday.
The combined sales of 1,022 firms under the top 30 business groups generated at home and abroad came at 1,231 trillion won (US$1.06 trillion) in 2015, down 6.3 percent from a year ago, according to data compiled by corporate tracker CEO Score.
Sales in foreign markets decreased at a faster pace than those in the domestic market as manufacturers in energy, electricity and heavy manufacturing grappled with the plunge in oil prices and a supply glut by Chinese rivals.
Overseas sales declined 7.4 percent on-year to 586.4 trillion won in 2015, while domestic revenue slipped 5.2 percent to 680.5 trillion won over the period, it said.
Among them, S-Oil Corp., the nation’s No. 3 refiner controlled by Saudi Aramco, the world’s largest crude exporter, saw its sales tumble 40.8 percent on-year to 10.4 trillion won.
Overseas revenue by Samsung Group, the nation’s largest conglomerate, dipped 8.9 percent as its mainstay phone and IT businesses faced tougher competition with Chinese rivals.
In contrast, Hyundai Motor Group, logged a 2.3 percent gain in overseas sales thanks to brisk performance in the United States and Europe.
Overseas sales by Hanwha Gruop, a defense and chemical conglomerate, more than doubled to 14.3 trillion won after it took over Samsung’s two chemical units in a 1.8 trillion won deal last year.