Cargo processed at Korean ports increased in 2017 compared with a year ago on the back of upbeat exports of vehicles and imports of soft coal, government data showed on Jan. 29.
The total amount of sea cargo reached 1.57 billion tons in 2017, up 4.1 percent on-year, according to data by the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries.
Shipments of automobiles showed the highest growth at 14.4 percent, followed by soft coal with 11.6 percent and numbers for machinery up 8.3 percent.
In contrast, cargo traffic of sand and steel dropped 35.9 percent and 12.8 percent, respectively.
Non-container cargo climbed 1.7 percent on-year to 1.09 billion tons, while container freight gained 5.4 percent to 27.42 million twenty-foot equivalent units, the latest data showed.
The Port of Busan, Korea’s maritime gateway on the southeastern coast, handled 400.5 million tons of cargo last year, followed by the southwestern port of Gwangyang with 291.83 million tons and Ulsan on the southeast coast with 202.36 million tons.
By nation, shipments to China, the nation’s largest trading partner, advanced 9 percent, and those to the United States rose 6.7 percent last year, helped by brisk exports of memory chips and petrochemical products.
By Song Seung-hyun and newswires (email@example.com