The sales volume of South Korea's mobile shopping market is expected to top 40 trillion won (US$34.9 billion) this year, the Korea Online Shopping Association said Saturday.
The association forecast that purchases made through smartphones and other mobile devices in South Korea are expected to grow 19.5 percent from the previous year to reach 42.53 trillion won this year, as consumers spend more time with their handsets.
In 2016, the nation's mobile shopping sales surged 45.7 percent from the previous year to 35.58 trillion won, according to the association, a nonprofit composed of leading online shopping websites.
It noted that open markets in online shopping, such as Gmarket, Auction, 11st Street and Interpark, are expected to show particularly strong sales growth.
Mobile sales at the local open markets are estimated to leap 28.1 percent on-year to 15.6 trillion won in 2017, following a surge of 55.9 percent recorded last year, the association said.
Mobile sales by department stores, large discount stores and television home shopping channels, are also expected to rise 15.1 percent to 26.9 trillion won this year, it added.
The association attributed the robust growth of mobile shopping to the rapid spread of smartphones, with the nation's smartphone penetration rate reaching 85 percent, one of the highest in the world.
"The mobile shopping market is expected to further grow in the years to come due to its convenience and aggressive marketing by retail companies," said an association official. (Yonhap)