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State-run think tank warns of 'economic slowdown' for 3 straight months

All News 14:44 January 13, 2019

SEOUL, Jan. 13 (Yonhap) -- A state-run think tank reaffirmed Sunday that the South Korean economy is in the doldrums as exports are cooling and private consumption remains sluggish.

The Korea Development Institute (KDI) said in its latest monthly evaluation report that the economic downturn seems to continue with signs of sluggish domestic demand and a slowing pace of exports.

It is the third straight month that the KDI report assessed that Asia's fourth-largest economy is losing steam.

Retail sales rose 1 percent on-month in November, sharply slowing down from an average 2.8 percent growth of September and October.

The consumer sentiment reached 97.2 in December, far below the benchmark line of 100.

Exports fell 1.2 percent in December due to a drop in overseas sales of chips and petrochemical goods.

The think tank anticipated that there are strong headwinds ahead of the South Korean economy in the new year as the global economy is feared to enter a downside cycle. Rising uncertainties over the U.S. economic and diplomatic policies will also weigh heavily on the South Korean economy, it added.

State-run think tank warns of 'economic slowdown' for 3 straight months - 1


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