SEOUL, March 15 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's economy faced external uncertainties such as global economic slowdown and the semiconductor industry slump, though economic indicators showed a positive picture, the Finance Ministry said Friday.
The Ministry of Economy and Finance said in its monthly economic report, called Greenbook, that though a positive momentum was shown in economic data earlier this year, the Asian economy faced uncertainties such as the global economic slump, the chip industry weakness, trade conflict and the Brexit from the European Union (EU).
Production in all industries grew 0.8 percent in January from a month earlier, while retail sales advanced 2.2 percent in the month. Facility investment added 0.2 percent in the first month of this year.
Consumer confidence improved for three straight months through February, and sentiment among manufacturers gained last month.
The number of those employed grew 263,000 in February from a year ago as the government's job program raised employment among those in their 60s or higher.
However, the country's export declined 11.1 percent in February from a year earlier, keeping a downward trend for the third consecutive month amid the global economic slowdown.
Semiconductor export tumbled 24.8 percent last month on lower product price.