SEOUL, Feb. 21 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's exports continued to recover in the first 20 days of February due mainly to strong demand for locally-made semiconductors, customs data showed on Tuesday.
Exports reached 27.7 billion U.S. dollars in the Feb. 1-20 period, up 26.2 percent from the same period of last year, according to the Korea Customs Service.
The exports, which account for about half of the economy, kept its recovery trend after rebounding 2.5 percent in November last year. The growth rate rose from 6.4 percent in December to 11.2 percent in January.
Robust demand for chips led the rapid exports growth. Shipments of semiconductors surged 51.5 percent, with those for oil products and automobiles posting a double-digit increase.
More business days this month compared with a year earlier also contributed to the export expansion. The lunar New Year holidays move to January this year from February last year.
Daily exports averaged 1.79 billion dollars during the Feb. 1-20 period, up 9.9 percent from a year ago.
Exports to China, South Korea's biggest trading partner, surged 36.7 percent, with those to Vietnam, the European Union and Japan also recording a double-digit increase. Shipments to the United States rose 4.7 percent.