It has been found that the amount of capital invested in the United States by South Korea since the ratification of the KORUS FTA in 2011 totals US$76.4 billion whereas that invested in South Korea by the United States stands at US$24.9 billion.
The former includes US$15.35 billion from the mining industry of South Korea, which is followed by US$15 billion from finance and insurance, US$14.13 billion from real estate and rental, US$10.68 billion from wholesale and retail and US$6.16 billion from manufacturing.
The latter is broadly divided into US$6.07 billion in the real estate and rental sector, US$4.7 billion in business service, US$2.1 billion in finance and insurance, US$2.95 billion in transport machinery and US$1.37 billion in chemical.
South Korea’s current account surplus with the United States increased from US$19.77 billion to US$40.99 billion from 2011 to 2014 but fell to US$31.15 billion last year. In 2016, South Korea’s goods account surplus and service account deficit with the U.S. totaled US$43.41 billion and US$14.28 billion, respectively.
“Since the ratification of the Korea-US FTA, South Korea’s investment amount has exceeded that of the US by no less than US$51.4 billion,” said the ruling The Minjoo Party lawmaker Kim Doo-kwan, who is a member of the Strategy and Finance Committee of the National Assembly. He went on to say, “These days, South Korea’s current account surplus with the United States is falling as automobile and steel exports are on the decline and imports are showing a rapid increase.” He also pointed out, “During the renegotiations concerning the free trade deal, the South Korean government needs to try to persuade the U.S. with data on job creation and economic growth resulting from the investment of capital instead of simple comparison between the two countries’ balances of trade.”