South Korea’s imports of Chinese electric vehicles skyrockets

fuel vehicles vs electric vehicles

According to “Asia Daily”, the import and export data recently released by the Korea International Trade Association shows that in the first half of this year (January to June) South Korea’s imports of cars from China were second only to Germany and the United States. The imports now hit $275.57 million, an increase of 79.7% year-on-year. With regards to finance, the scale of electric vehicles imported by South Korea from China reached $52.82 million, an increase of 367.8% over the same period last year, ranking third among all import target countries.

Toyota electric vehicles

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The scale of South Korea’s electric vehicles exported to China is only $1.53 million, and the scale of the trade deficit may be gradually widening. According to data from the Korea Automobile Manufacturers Association (KAMA), the import volume of Chinese-made electric buses that can carry 10 or more people has shown a significant increase and now accounts for more than half of the market share in South Korea.

Taking advantage of the battery market, Chinese companies such as Geely Automobile and BYD will cooperate with South Korea’s Renault and Ssangyong to launch new cars in the domestic market.

More than a third of newly registered taxis in South Korea this year are electric vehicles

At the moment, more than one-third of newly registered taxis in South Korea in the first seven months of this year were electric vehicles, according to data from the South Korean Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport. Data from the Ministry of Transportation analyzed by the CarIsYou data center shows that South Korean taxis operated 7,394 newly registered electric vehicles from January to July. This is equivalent to 36.4% of the 20,296 newly registered cabs in the same period. The number of electric taxis has been increasing over the past decade.

CarIsYou points out that individuals prefer electric vehicles for taxi operations over businesses. Of these newly registered electric taxis, 86.8% belong to individuals and 13.2% belong to rental companies. In 2013, there were no registered electric taxis in South Korea. But that number went from nine in 2014, 54 in 2015, and 1,029 in 2019, before nearly quintupling to 4,993 in 2021. In terms of models, Hyundai Motor’s flagship Ioniq 5 was the most popular electric taxi in Korea with 3,453 new launches, followed by the Kia EV6 (2,434 units) and the Hyundai Niro EV (1,702 units). Hyundai’s luxury brand Genesis has two G80 models and one GV70 model as electric taxis.

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