South Korea’s exports of pharmaceutical products expanded 20 percent in 2017 from a year earlier, government data showed Tuesday. Exports of medicaments also increased 4 percent last year.
According to data from the Korea Customs Service, annual exports of pharmaceutical products under the HS Code 30 reached $2.89 billion in 2017, up 20.5 percent ($492 million) from a year earlier. Imports of pharmaceutical products inched up 1.3 percent to $5.60 billion. A faster increase in exports than that in imports narrowed the trade deficit by $418 million to $2.7 billion last year from $3.12 billion in the previous year.
The annual exports of medicaments under the HS Code 3003 and 3004 rose 4.4 percent to $828 million last year, while imports declined 2.2 percent to $3.48 billion. Accordingly, the trade deficit came down by $110 million to $2.65 billion last year from $2.76 billion in 2016.
In the past five years, exports of pharmaceutical products rose fastest in 2015 with an 18.5 percent annual growth, and those of medicaments, in 2014 with a 19 percent growth. In imports, pharmaceutical goods expanded the quickest in 2016 with a 16.2 percent gain, and medicaments, also in 2016 with an 18.4 percent rise.
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