China's reopening likely to help S.Korean economy rebound: Report

Seoul, Feb 12 (IANS) China’s reopening from COVID-19 restrictions and its economic recovery are expected to help boost South Korea’s economic growth and exports, which are highly related to the neighbouring country, a report showed on Sunday.

According to the report published by the Korea International Trade Association (KITA), global institutions have predicted that the Chinese economy will expand 5.1 percent in 2023 from a year earlier, up from a 3 percent growth in the previous year.

Thanks to the reopening from its years-long zero-COVID-19 policy and Beijing’s stimulus packages, the world’s second-largest economy will likely post a 6.9 percent on-year growth in the second quarter and 2.6 percent for the first quarter, reports Yonhap news agency.

Should that prediction materialize, the robust growth in the Chinese economy will likely raise South Korea’s economic growth by an additional 0.16 percentage point and its exports by 0.55 percentage point this year, the report said.

The South Korean government expected Asia’s fourth-largest economy to expand around 1.6 percent in 2023, down from a 2.6 percent gain in 2022. Its 2023 exports are expected to decrease 4.5 percent on-year, compared with a growth of 6.1 percent last year.

“South Korea needs to make the most of China’s reopening and tackle the Chinese domestic market in a way to get over sluggish exports,” the report said.

South Korea’s economy is largely affected by the fluctuation of the Chinese economy as the neighboring country is its biggest trade partner.

Shipments to China reached US$155.8 billion in 2022, accounting for 22.8 percent of Korea’s total exports of $683.8 billion.



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