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Korea's IT Industry Expected to Fare Better This Year: Report
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South Korea's information technology (IT) industry is forecast to enjoy a rise in exports this year as advanced countries such as the United States are slated to start long-term evolution (LTE) services for smartphones, a report said Thursday.

The country's auto, machinery, refining and petrochemicals, textile and steel industries are forecast to undergo a slight slowdown in 2013, while the construction and shipbuilding sector will suffer a slump, according to the report by the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI).

Outbound shipments of smartphones will lead an increase in exports by the IT sector due to the launch of LTE services in advanced countries, which enables faster data transfers compared with third generation connectivity, the report said. It expected exports of IT products to rise 5.5 percent on-year from a year ago.

Automakers will see a 3.1 percent rise in exports on the back of plant expansion by Kia Motors Corp., but their domestic sales will be similar to last year, the report said.

South Korea's machinery exports are forecast to rise 8.7 percent on-year on the strength of the new Chinese government's efforts to boost domestic consumption, but the likelihood of improvement will be low due to stiff competition.

The report also said that exports of oil products and petrochemicals are forecast to grow 1.3 percent and 5.6 percent respectively, with those of steel products expected to face a setback due to expanded protectionism.

The country's construction sector is expected to fare worse due to declining orders in the public sector, while a glut of merchant ships will get local shipbuilders mired in a slump, the report said.

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Source: Yonhap News (Jan. 3, 2012)

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