31 May 2012

Slowing exports take toll in South Korea

6:01 am on 31 May 2012

South Korea's current account surplus almost halved in April after exports of computer and phone chips and oil products slowed.

The surplus was $US1.78 billion in April, down from a revised $US2.97 billion in March.

South Korea is Asia's fourth-largest economy and relies heavily on exports for growth.

Faced with weaker demand in Europe and the United States, it is now looking at ways of boosting trade within Asia.

Exports in April were worth almost $US45.8 billion, down from a little over $US47.3 billion in March.

Exports to Europe fell just over 20% in April compared with the same month last year.

Exports to the US rose in April by just over 4% year-on-year, but slowed dramatically when compared to March - when they were up almost 28% on a yearly basis.