Record Numbers Embrace Overseas Online Shopping

  • By Choi Kyu-min

    February 26, 2019 13:03

    Koreans bought nearly US$3 billion worth of products on international e-commerce websites for the first time last year.

    According to the Korea Customs Service on Monday, Koreans bought products online worth about $2.76 billion in 32.25 million transactions last year, up 37 percent from a year ago.

    Exports by online purchases surged to 9.6 million transactions worth $3.25 billion, up 36 percent in terms of volume and 25 percent in money terms.

    Overseas customers bought an average of $338 worth of products from websites based in Korea, while Korean customers paid on average $85 for products from websites overseas.

    Chinese and Japanese were the biggest customers for Korean products online, accounting for 64 percent of all transactions.

    More than half of the online purchases by foreign customers were clothes and cosmetics, followed by shoes, bags, sporting goods and computers.

    The KCS said online sales of K-pop merchandise surged due to the popularity of the super boyband BTS. But the biggest portion of online purchases by Koreans from overseas was health supplements with 16.7 percent or $460 million in money terms.

    The popularity of affordable Chinese electronics grew at a particularly fast pace.

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