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South Korea's overseas construction orders down 32 percent in H1

Staff writer ▼ | July 1, 2015
Overseas construction orders won by South Korean builders dropped significantly from a year earlier in the first half, the government said.
South Korean builders
Trade   Low global oil prices led to a sharp drop
Low global oil prices apparently led to a sharp drop in orders from the Middle East, traditionally the largest market for South Korean builders.

In the first six months of the year, overseas construction orders clinched by local builders came to US$25.47 billion, down 32.1 percent from the same period last year, according to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport.

In the January-June period, construction orders from Middle Eastern nations tumbled 71.9 percent to $6.96 billion from $24.74 billion in the same period last year.

The average price of Dubai crude plunged nearly 45 percent to $57.70 in April from $104.60 per barrel in the same month last year.

On Monday, the price of Dubai crude, which accounts for about 80 percent of South Korea's overall oil imports, closed at $59.36 per barrel, according to the state-run Korea National Oil Corp.

The ministry said orders from Asian countries, on the other hand, more than doubled from $6.22 billion to $13.03 billion over the cited period.

Orders from Pacific and North American states amounted to $1.01 billion in the first half, compared with $130 million in the same period last year.

The ministry said local builders will likely continue facing difficulties in the second half, partly due to a continued drop in global oil prices, as well as global economic uncertainties.