Tue, 01 Dec 2020

SEOUL, Oct. 27 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's real gross domestic product (GDP), adjusted for inflation, grew 1.9 percent in the third quarter from the previous quarter, central bank data showed Tuesday.

It marked the first rebound in three quarters after contracting 1.3 percent in the first quarter and 3.2 percent in the second quarter each on a quarterly basis, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK).

The GDP recovery was led by a turnaround in export, which accounts for about half of the economy.

Export advanced 15.6 percent in the July-September quarter from three months earlier, after slumping 16.1 percent in the April-June quarter.

The outbound shipment raised the real GDP by 3.7 percentage points during the July-September quarter.

Outlook for the fourth-quarter GDP was blurred by the COVID-19 resurgence in Europe and the United States that would curtail the export of South Korea.

According to the BOK's estimate in August, the country's real GDP was forecast to decline 1.3 percent in 2020.

If the fourth-quarter GDP expands over 0.4 percent on a quarterly basis, the BOK's growth outlook could be revised up from the August estimate, the BOK noted.

Private consumption, another growth engine of the economy, fell 0.1 percent in the third quarter from three months earlier.

The consumption fall was attributable to the COVID-19 resurgence here in August and September.

To contain the virus spread, the government tightened its social-distancing guidelines and discouraged people from doing outside activities such as shopping, traveling and eating out.

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