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2012 per-capita GDP estimated to stay almost flat

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Published : 2012-12-30 21:19
Updated : 2012-12-30 21:19

South Korea’s per-capita gross domestic product is estimated to only marginally inch up in 2012 compared with the previous year due to the slowing economy, a report showed Sunday.

Korea’s per-capita GDP is estimated to reach $22,705 in 2012, up 1.3 percent from a year earlier, according to a report by Korea Investment & Securities Co.

In calculating the figures, the full-year economic growth rate was estimated at 2.3 percent and the local currency was set at an average of 1,127.1 against the dollar.

A marginal gain in the per-capita GDP came as the economic growth cooled down on weak exports and sluggish domestic demand.

The estimated per-capita GDP figure is also lower than $23,021 projected by the International Monetary Fund in October.

“Inflation growth was low and the local currency on average weakened to the dollar, making the per-capita GDP grow slowly,”said Jin Eun-jung, an economist at Korea Investment & Securities Co.

The Korean currency rose more than 7 percent to the greenback in 2012, compared with the end of 2011, but the won weakened an average of 1.7 percent per dollar throughout this year.

A weaker won makes the dollar conversion value of the per-capita GDP smaller.

Korea’s per-capita GDP surpassed the $20,000 mark for the first time in 2007 by reaching $21,590, but the 2008 global financial crisis led the per-capita GDP to fall below the level in 2009 for the second straight year.

The government said last week that the Korean economy is expected to grow 2.1 percent in 2012, sharply lower than its earlier forecast of 3.3 percent. Its 2013 growth estimate stood at 3 percent, lower than the central bank’s 3.2 percent projection. (Yonhap News)

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