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S. Korea's per capita income tops US$33,000 in 2018 under revised benchmark

All News 08:50 June 04, 2019

SEOUL, June 4 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's per capital income reached a record level of over US$33,000 last year, an increase of more than $2,000 from an earlier estimate, due to a revision of the benchmark year aimed at better aligning the country's statistics with those of other countries, the central bank said Tuesday.

Under the latest revision, the Bank of Korea changed the reference year for national accounts to 2015 from 2010.

As a result, the country's gross national income per capita came to $33,434 in 2018 from the $31,349 tallied under the previous reference year.

The revision included changes in total output and value added of each industry that incorporate a wide range of new and revised source data, such as the economic census, according to the BOK.

It also modified non-software companies' expenditures on self-developed software from an expense to an investment in intellectual property products, taking account of the economic reality of the self-developed software's contributions to long-term improvement of productivity and efficiency.

"As a result of the revision, the nominal level of GDP in 2015 was revised upward by 6 percent, while the annual growth rate of GDP was up by 0.2 percentage point on average over the 2001 to 2018 period," BOK said in a press release.

GNI per capita expanded by 5.8 percent annually in U.S. dollars over the revised period, it added.

This image depicts South Korea's per capita gross national income hitting the US$30,000 mark. (Yonhap)


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