South Korean Beer Imports Exceed $100 Million Sales

D-Bo , Jan. 20, 2015, 10:15 a.m.

Beer imports surpassed US$100 million in value for the first time last year.  The Korea Customs Service said Monday that beer imports were worth $111.64 million in 2014, up 24.5 percent from $89.67 million a year earlier. The sector has shown remarkable growth for the past three years after suffering a big drop in the wake of the Asian financial crisis. 

Imports exceeded exports for the first time since data collection began in 1995. The gross weight of imports increased to 119,467 tons in 2014 from 95,211 tons in 2013, while exports declined to 111,004 tons from 113,155 tons. The beer industry posted a trade deficit of $38.46 million last year. 

For the fourth year in a row, Japanese beers were the most popular among Koreans, with imports of 31,914 tons, followed by Dutch (17,821 tons) and German (16,688 tons) beers. Chinese beer (11,490 tons) moved up one slot to fourth, while American brews (8,944 tons) placed fifth.

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