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►▼ Where is this data from?
This chart is based on data from the ROK Customs Service. Inter-Korean trade holds a unique place in South Korean trade data; ROK government agencies do not consider inter-Korean trade as trade between two sovereign nations, and thus refer to “inbound” and “outbound’ transactions, rather than imports and exports.
►▼ What have been North Korea’s main exports to South Korea?
The main outputs at the Kaesong Industrial Complex, which has accounted for the largest proportion of inter-Korean trade in years past, have included textiles (mostly finished garments), shoes, semi-conductors, and car parts.
Outside of the KIC, prior to 2010 North Korea also exported garments to South Korea through processing-on-commission trade, in which South Korean firms would contract to send raw materials or intermediary goods (primarily textiles) to the North for value-added processing. North Korea also exported significant amounts of seafood to South Korea before 2010, particularly after Japan – once the primary market for North Korean seafood exports – began to sanction this trade in the mid-2000s. Additionally, North Korea has exported some mineral resources to South Korea, and from 2001 through 2010 South Korean firms invested in two mining projects in the North.