SKorea current account surplus up at $10B in March

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SEOUL: South Korea’s current account surplus rose to $10.4 billion in March as slumping oil prices slashed the country’s import bill, new data showed Monday.

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The current account—the broadest measure of foreign trade in goods and services—has been in the black for more than three years.

The March figure compared to a $6.4 billion surplus in February and $7.3 billion a year ago.

Exports fell 8.4 percent from a year ago while imports shrank 16.8 percent, according to data from the Bank of Korea, the country’s central bank.

The value of imported oil, which accounts for the lion’s share of total imports, fell 43.9 percent from a year earlier.

South Korea imports almost all of its energy from overseas.

The services account, which includes spending on overseas trips and royalty payments, narrowed its deficit to $970 million from $2.06 billion in February. AFP

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