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Japan sees trade deficit for second straight year in 2019 Updated: 2020-01-23 16:25:46 KST


Japan posted a goods trade deficit of 15 billion U.S. dollars in 2019, falling into the red for the second year in a row.
The size of the deficit is also up 34 percent from 2018.
Tokyo's Finance Ministry said Thursday that both exports and imports dropped by five percent.
This comes as Japan's exports to its number one trading partner China fell as demand for goods like auto parts and semiconductor equipment dropped amid the U.S.-China trade dispute.
Japan recorded a trade deficit of 34 billion dollars with China.
In addition, its trade surplus with South Korea shrank amid souring bilateral trade relations.
In July, Tokyo imposed export restrictions on three key high tech materials to Seoul that are used to make semiconductors and displays.
That move was seen as retaliation against South Korea's top court's ruling that ordered a Japanese firm to compensate Koreans who were used as forced labor during Japan's colonial rule.
The export curbs triggered a widespread boycott of Japanese goods in South Korea, including beer, cars and clothes.
Data by Japan's Finance Ministry show its exports to Korea fell 13 percent on-year, and imports dropped nine percent.
Tokyo's trade surplus with Seoul plunged 19 percent to 16 billion dollars in 2019.
Japan posted a net trade surplus across Asia, a surplus with the U.S. and a trade deficit with Europe.
Kim Hyesung, Arirang News.

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