Korea continues to enjoy its largest trade surplus with China but suffer its largest trade deficit with Japan. According to the Korea Customs Service on Thursday, the country made a surplus of US$3.38 million from January to October, exporting $294 billion worth of goods but importing $260.3 billion.
Korea has 231 trading partners, but the volume of both exports to and imports from the top 10 trading partners, including China, Japan and the U.S. accounts for more than 60 percent of the total.
Exports to 10 major countries accounted for 61 percent, or $179.2 billion. The top export destination was China with $69.4 billion, or 23.6 percent. Next were the U.S. ($30.8 billion), Japan ($17.6 billion), Hong Kong ($15.7 billion), and Singapore ($11.1 billion).
Imports from 10 major countries accounted for 67.2 percent of total import volume. China topped the list with $43.9 billion, followed by Japan ($39.9 billion), the U.S. ($23.4 billion), and Saudi Arabia ($16.1 billion).
Korea has a trade surplus with 165 countries but a deficit with 66. The country spent the money earned from exports to China on imports from Japan. The trade surplus of $25.5 billion with China nearly dovetailed with the trade deficit of $22.3 billion with Japan, because the more exports increase, the more key components and materials must be imported from Japan.