Two-way inter-Korean trade totaled $214.9 million in the
first half of the year, up 8.9 percent from a year earlier. South Korea imported
a total of $96 million worth of goods from North Korea, a 51.8 percent increase
from a year earlier, while goods valued at $118.9 million were shipped to the
North, a decline of 11.3 percent.
Major items brought in were agricultural-fishery
products, iron-steel and metal products and textiles. Northbound shipments were
chiefly chemical-industrial goods and textiles.
The bilateral trade of first half in 2002 increased by
8.9% despite strained inter-Korean relations. The increase was attributed to a
46.7 percent surge in commercial trade such as South Korea's imports of fishery
products, prompted by an improved economic situation in the South, and a 17.3
percent gain in transactions based on processing-on-commission arrangements.
such as imports textiles.
Meanwhile, bilateral trade in June totaled $28.7 million,
down 49.1 percent from the previous month, showing a break in the upward trend
this year. The fall was attributed to a slowdown in "non-trade" transactions
involving inter-Korean cooperative projects and humanitarian
During the first half, South Korea registered a $22.9
million surplus in nominal trade, while North Korea posted a $73.4 million
surplus, excluding the value of non-trade transactions.
Of the trade totaling $214.9 million, 55 percent was
commercial and the rest a non-trade nature. The commercial share represents a
31.9 percent hike from a year before.
A total of 214 companies, including 67 involved in
processing-on-commission basis, participated in the bilateral trade of 447
items, including 194 handled under the processing-on-commission formula.