SEOUL, Jan. 15 (Xinhua) -- South Korea posted a trade surplus for eight straight months through December due to a double-digit export increase, customs office data showed Friday.
Trade surplus amounted to 6.8 billion U.S. dollars in December, up from a surplus of 5.9 billion dollars in November, according to Korea Customs Service. The trade balance stayed in black since May.
Export, which accounts for about half of the South Korean economy, advanced 12.6 percent over the year to 51.4 billion dollars in December, while import added 2.2 percent to 44.6 billion dollars.
Shipment for semiconductors, auto parts and telecommunication devices, such as smartphone, picked up in double figures, but export for cars and consumer electronics slipped in single digits.
Export to China, South Korea's biggest trading partner, rose 3.3 percent in December from a year earlier, with those to the United States, the European Union and Vietnam growing in double digits.
Raw material import declined 11.3 percent last month, but those for consumer and capital goods gained 7.8 percent and 19.8 percent respectively.