South Korea's exports of semi-finished products reported significant growth. However, exports of finished flat, finished long and ferroalloys declined in contrast with the previous year amid the prolonged fallout from the new coronavirus outbreak.
The detailed highlights are mentioned below:
1. Semi-finished-South Korea's semi-finished steel exports stood at 734,302 t in CY'20 compared to 333,146 t in CY'19. During Dec '20, exports were reported at 42,852 t declining by 36% compared to 67,481 t in Nov '20. While the same recorded an increase of 23% y-o-y. Exports in Dec '19 was at 34,866 t.
Country-wise exports-In Dec '20, the nation's exports to Taiwan were around 26,467 t against 20,002 t in the previous month. Exports to Japan declined by 15% to 16,269 t in comparison with 19,196 t a month ago.
2.Finished long-Exports of finished long products was reported at 2,177,237 t in CY '20 compared to 2,483,819 t in CY'19. Exports increased by 12% m-o-m to 160,317 t in Dec '20 against 143,614 t in Nov '20. However, y-o-y the decline was around 34% against 244,313 t in Dec '19.
Country-wise exports-In Dec '20, exports to Japan dropped by 30% to 22,151 t as against 31,444 t a month back. Other major exporting nations were Vietnam at 15,525 t, Malaysia at 27,483t, and Canada at 9,819 t.
3. Finished flat-Exports of the finished flat is assessed at 22,992,628 t In CY '20 against 24,218,619 t in CY'19. The exports stood at 1,915,535 t in Dec '20 against 1,891,148 t in Nov '20, registering growth by 1% on a m-o-m basis and decline by 18% on a y-o-y basis.
Country-wise exports-In Dec '20 South Korea mainly exported flat steel to China at 3,09,123 t in Dec '20 against 3,28,210 t in Nov '20. Other major countries were Japan at 2,50,109 t and India at 1,96,098 t
4. Ferro alloys-In CY 20 the country exported around 1,39,338 t against 1,71,670 t in the previous year. During Dec '20 exports were reported at 9,074 t declining by 29% compared to 12,716 t in Nov '20. While the same decreased by 26% y-o-y basis.
Country-wise exports-In Dec '20, exports to the United States stood at 4000 t against 3500 t in the previous month. Netherlands stood at 1637 t in Dec '20 against 1442 t in Nov '20.
Factors affecting the export volumes:
1. Country's auto exports declined in CY20 amid COVID-19 -South Korea's auto exports sank 21.4 percent on-year in 2020 as the new coronavirus pandemic disrupted global supply chains. The country's shipments of cars reached 1.89 million units last year, compared with 2.4 million units posted in 2019, according to the data compiled by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy. On the other hand domestic sales increased by 5.8 % on-year to reach 1.89 million units last year on the release of new models coupled with the government's tax cuts aimed at revitalizing domestic consumption.
2. Increased investment by the government to promote various sectors reduces exports-In July 2020, the government had announced a plan to invest KRW160 trillion between 2020-2025 on a 'Korean New Deal' program focused on the development of green-and-renewable energy, big data and artificial intelligence. This provided avenues for increased steel demand in the country and reduced export volumes.