Auto exports of South Korean carmakers reduced last month due to global economic slowdown, which weakened demand for cars, a government report showed Tuesday.
Auto exports dipped 2.6 percent from a year earlier to 277,874 units in March, according to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy.
The reduction was attributable to economic slowdown in emerging markets, including Russia, and weak demand in the oil-producing countries caused by lower oil prices. Fiercer competition with Japanese rivals amid the weak Japanese yen trend also contributed to sluggish car exports.
Auto production by the country's five carmakers, including Hyundai, Kia, GM Korea and Renault Samsung, slid 2.6 percent from a year earlier to 414,352 units in March.
Domestic car sales, however, jumped 8.8 percent on-year to 150, 383 units in March thanks to demand for foreign luxury brands.
Sales of cars produced in local plants increased 4.4 percent from a year earlier to 127,163 units in March, with the figure for imported cars surging 41.3 percent to 23,220 last month.
The share of foreign car brands in the local market kept rising from 9.2 percent in March 2013 to 11.9 percent in March 2014. The market share jumped to 15.4 percent in March this year.