South Korea's industrial output declined in March from a month earlier due mainly to a sharp drop in electronic parts and steel products, a government report showed Thursday.
According to the report by Statistics Korea, production in the mining, manufacturing, gas and electricity industries dipped 0.4 percent last month from a month earlier. Compared with a year earlier, numbers were down 0.1 percent.
Production in the service sector also fell 0.4 percent from February but moved up 3.1 percent from a year earlier, the report showed.
For all industries, output fell 0.6 percent from the previous month and gained 1.8 percent vis-a-vis a year earlier, according to South Korea's (Yonhap) News Agency.
The statistical agency said a strong showing in February, when output rose 2.3 percent on-month, and overseas production of key electronic parts contributed to the weak performance in March.
Electronic parts output plunged 7.7 percent on-month, with production of steel products contracting 4.3 percent.
In the service sector, production was in minus territory for the transportation and the science and technology areas that offset modest gains in property and real estate transactions. Retail sales were also off 0.6 percent from February on weak demand for nondurable goods.
Business investment, another key barometer of growth, was down 3.9 percent on-month as companies spent less on machinery purchases. From the year before, investment rose a solid 6.6 percent.
In the construction field, actual work underway dropped 6.8 percent on-month and 1.4 percent from a year earlier, mostly because of poor showing in civil engineering projects.
On the plus side, data showed orders for new building works shooting up 141.7 percent, the sharpest spike in 13 years.