According to the August trade statistics (preliminary report, customs clearance basis) released by the Ministry of Finance on the 18th, exports to South Korea fell by 9.4% year-on-year to 422.6 billion yen. In particular, groceries seemed to be affected by the non-buying movement in South Korea, and fell sharply by 40.6%. The impact of worsening relations between Japan and Korea is affecting the real economy. Exports to the global market also fell for the 9th consecutive month.
In South Korea, in response to Japan's stricter restrictions on exports of semiconductor materials to South Korea, calls for non-buying Japanese products began around July. The target of non-buying is mainly products for consumers, such as Japanese beer and seasonings. In exports to South Korea, relatively large chemical products fell 4.9%, and general machinery fell 21.8%.
In August, the value of exports from Japan to the world decreased by 8.2% to ¥ 6,141 billion. Imports also decreased by 12.0% year-on-year to 6,277.3 billion yen, the fourth consecutive month of decline. The trade balance, which is calculated by subtracting the import value from the export value, was a deficit of 136.3 billion yen, a deficit for the second consecutive month. It was also affected by the fact that exports to China declined 12.1% against the backdrop of US-China trade friction. (Shiki Iwasawa)