January 22, 2009 12:00
The value gap between Korean brands and those of developed countries is narrowing, indicating that Korean products are gaining more recognition abroad.
According to a survey of 457 global customers released by the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency, the country's brand value gained 5.2 percent against brands from Germany, Japan and the United States as of January this year. This means customers who were willing to pay a higher premium for non-Korean brands two years ago were less willing to do so this month.
KOTRA explains that the global financial crisis has diluted the image of many non-Korean brands, especially those of the U.S. Looking at the details, if a Korean product costs US$100 global customers were willing to pay about $149 for German products, $139 for Japanese brands and $136 for American ones.
Meanwhile, KOTRA noted that the value gap between Korean and Chinese brands is widening, with China on the losing end due in large part to health concerns in the wake of the melamine dairy product scare.
Although Korean brands are being received well in the American region and the European Union, KOTRA strategists say Korean companies need to work harder in emerging economies such as the Middle East, Africa and China.
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