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S Korea exports fall 0.9% in May

South Korea's exports in May fell 0.9 per cent from a year ago largely due to fewer working days that hampered production, state data showed Sunday.

SEOUL: South Korea's exports in May fell 0.9 per cent from a year ago largely due to fewer working days that hampered production, state data showed Sunday.

Exports in May amounted to US$47.88 billion compared to US$48.31 billion a year ago, the trade ministry said, blaming a four-day holiday early in the month.

Imports amounted to US$42.53 billion, up 0.3 per cent from US$42.39 billion a year ago, leaving a US$5.3 billion trade surplus, the ministry said.

It was the 28th consecutive month that South Korea -- Asia's fourth-largest economy -- has posted a trade surplus.

Exports to the Europe and the United States rose thanks to growing shipments of cars and petrochemical products, while those to China -- the South's top trading partner -- and Japan slowed, it said.

For 2013, the South's exports grew 2.1 per cent while imports fell 0.8 per cent, which produced a trade surplus of US$44.09 billion.

The trade ministry forecasts a 6.4 per cent rise in exports this year.

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