SEOUL, May 15 (Xinhua) -- Prices for goods imported to South Korea hit a seven-month high in April on expensive crude oil, central bank data showed Tuesday.
The import price index stood at 85.03 in April, up 1.2 percent from a month earlier, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK). It marked the highest since September last year, keeping an upward trend for the fourth consecutive month.
Higher costs for imported crude oil pulled up overall import prices. Dubai crude, South Korea's benchmark, averaged 68.27 U.S. dollars per barrel in April from 62.74 dollars in March.
Prices for imported raw materials gained 4.1 percent in April from the previous month, with those for crude oil and liquified natural gas (LNG) rising 8.4 percent and 3.4 percent, respectively.
Intermediate goods prices added 0.4 percent on higher costs for imported coal and oil products.
The South Korean currency's ascent to the U.S. dollar limited further hike in import prices. The won/dollar exchange rate averaged 1,067.76 won per dollar in April, down from 1,071.89 won in the previous month.