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S. Korea's fisheries imports rise in 2011

All Headlines 11:00 February 21, 2012

SEOUL, Feb. 21 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's imports of fishery products rose slightly last year despite a large drop in shipments from Japan, the government said Tuesday.

The country imported about 1.05 million tons of fresh and frozen fisheries products in 2011, up 4 percent from a year earlier, according to the Ministry for Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

Imports, however, surged 18 percent on-year, in terms of value, from US$26.9 billion to $32.8 billion due to rising prices.

The ministry said the rise in prices also led to a large increase in imports of cheap frozen products while those of live and refrigerated products dropped 42.1 percent and 21.5 percent, respectively.

The amount of imported frozen fisheries products grew 7 percent on-year to some 864,000 tons, making up over 82 percent of the country's total imports last year, according to the ministry.

By nation, China continued to be the largest exporter of marine products to South Korea with its shipments growing 4.4 percent on-year to 316,926 tons.

Shipments from Japan, on the other hand, were nearly halved from 75,765 tons in 2010 to 40,466 tons last year.

The ministry attributed the drop to the widespread radiation scare caused by the meltdown of the nuclear reactor and radiation leak at the nuclear power plant in Fukushima, Japan last year.

bdk@yna.co.kr
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