The South Korean economy seems to be on a moderate recovery path on the back of brisk overseas sales and improving private consumption, a state-run think tank said Tuesday.
"The Korean economy continued to improve driven by exports and the manufacturing industry," the Korea Development Institute (KDI) said in its monthly evaluation of the country's economic conditions. "Domestic demand exhibited a slight increase led by consumption."
Exports rose for 12 months in a row fueled by more global trade. This has spearheaded the upside pace of Asia's fourth-largest economy.
In October, outbound shipments advanced 7.1 percent from a year earlier on rising demand for Korean-made chips, following a record 35-percent surge in the previous month. South Korea's exports have been in positive terrain since November last year.
Industrial output has also been on the bright side as the production sector is closely linked with exports. The output of all industries gained 7.4 percent on-year in September, with production of the manufacturing and mining industry jumping 8.4 percent.
Facility investment was also boosted by stellar overseas sales of chips, as the equipment investment index soared 25.2 percent on-year in September thanks to a 30.3 percent jump in machinery-related investment.
Moreover, private consumption showed clear signs of recovery, as retail sales rose 8.3 percent in September, widening from a 0.9 percent gain in August. Consumer sentiment also moved up in October for the first time in three months.
"Investment conditions remained positive, while consumption improved slightly from the relative sluggishness of the past," the KDI said.