Introduction from UKTI Deputy Director of Trade South Korea, Andrew Dalgleish
Korea is an exciting market. This is an exciting time for UK companies to do business in Korea.
2012 was a great year. UK exports to Korea reached a new high, with Korea becoming the 3rd largest destination for UK goods in Asia-Pacific; and Korea made the largest contribution to the UK’s growth in exports to the world. Since 2011, Korea’s growth continues; 2% in 2012, and 0.7% in the first quarter of 2013.
Opportunities for UK firms in Korea have never been better. The EU-South Korea Free Trade Agreement is becoming firmly embedded, on course to remove 97% of all trade tariffs. Alongside this, President Park is championing a new ‘creative economy’ to foster an environment supportive of design, advertising and start-ups; all areas where UK companies are particularly strong. Korea’s economy, and with it the tastes of Korean consumers, are diversifying. British firms are already active and successful across a wide range of sectors, including Food and Drink, ICT and Advanced Tech, Green Growth, Shipping, Chemicals, Education, and Fashion.
What’s more, UK companies are increasingly choosing Korea as their base for wider East-Asian expansion. Korea’s tourism has risen to around 11 million visitors per year and is now an important test bed for selling goods to Chinese, Japanese, Taiwanese and other Asian tourists.
We have seen the growing importance of the Korean market first hand here at UKTI where the demand for our market research reports and other services has more than tripled in 4 years. We bring our expertise to over 1,000 UK businesses every year in Korea.
Over the next five years the South Korean economy is set to make the 10th largest contribution to world growth. UK firms with an interest in Asia cannot afford to overlook South Korea.
UKTI Deputy Director of Trade South Korea
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