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Import Price Increase Hits 10-Year High in April

News2008-05-16
Import Price Increase Hits 10-Year High in April

The nation's import prices rose at their fastest pace in nearly ten years last month, pushed up by soaring international oil prices and a weaker won.

The Bank of Korea said Friday that import prices in local currency terms jumped 31-point-three percent year-on-year in April, the highest since May 1998.

The central bank attributed the sharp rises to surging prices for raw materials and intermediate goods. Raw materials prices shot up a record 58-and-a-half percent in April from a year earlier, while the cost of intermediate goods jumped more than 20 percent.

The bank cited the Korean won's weakness against the dollar as another factor pushing up import prices. The Korean currency traded at an average of 986-point-66 won against the greenback last month, nearly six percent weaker than a year earlier.

The bank forecast that import prices will likely continue to soar this month.

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