Per capita GDP to top $30,000 mark in 2016
Gross domestic product (GDP) per person in Korea will touch the symbolic $30,000 mark in 2016, nearly a decade after it first breached the $20,000 threshold in 2007, according to a recent study by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
When measured at purchasing power parity (PPP), which irons out the differences in market exchange rates and cost of living, Korea’s GDP per capita will be valued at over $40,000 in 2016, a year before it probably overtakes Japan in the table, the report said.
Korea’s GDP per capita figure was at $21,653 in 2007, but dropped to $19,162 in 2008 after the financial crisis hit and decimated global markets. The number dropped to $17,110 in 2009 before rebounding to $20,765 in 2010 when the country’s economy expanded by more than 6 percent. Last year’s level was measured at $22,778.
The IMF forecasts Korea’s GDP per capita to reach $23,680 this year, $25,232 in 2013, $26,992 in 2014 and $28,872 in 2015 before hitting $30,879 in 2016, which would represent the 29th highest level among world economies. The number will reach $33,032 in 2017, when the country will likely edge Japan on PPP basis.
The Korean economy expanded 3.6 percent last year, slowing down from a 6.2 percent growth in 2010, with sluggishness in major markets like Europe, North America and China leading to a sharp pullback in export growth.
The Bank of Korea (BOK) expects the economy to expand more slowly than anticipated this year, recently cutting its growth forecast from 3.7 percent to 3.5 percent, citing high fuel prices, weak consumer spending and international financial market mayhem.