The export-reliant Korean economy is gaining momentum toward a stronger recovery as advanced nations boosted consumption of Korean products last month.
Korea's trade ministry said Tuesday that the nation's exports rose 5.2 percent in March from the same period a year earlier to over 49 billion U.S. dollars.
That is the second-highest mark on record and faster growth compared to a one-and-a-half percent rise in February.
Exports to the U.S. jumped 17 percent in March from the previous year, while those to the European Union rose 15 percent.
Korea's exports to the U.S., in particular, slowed in the first two months of the year due to harsh winter weather, with the rate of increase remaining in the single figures.
"The world economy is on the recovery and the momentum is getting stronger. So in the second half of this year the exports of South Korea is expected to grow faster."
Still, experts add that the slowing Chinese economy and the impact of the slowdown on global financial markets could cloud the positive outlook.
By product, mobile communication devices such as handsets soared over 30 percent with shipments of automobiles rising 16 percent.
Korea's imports, meanwhile, reached 45 billion dollars last month, up 3.6 percent from the previous year helped by an increase in purchases of consumer goods.
The trade surplus came to around 4.2 billion.
Hwang Ji-hye, Arirang News.
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