At the end of 2011, South Korean GDP was $1,245bn, and it was growing at 3.7%. South Korea is a fast emerging economic power and a developed country with a high standard of living.
- World leader in technologically advanced goods, such as electronics and automobiles, with large companies like Samsung, LG and Hyundai.
- Leads the world in the shipbuilding industry, with 7 Korean shipbuilding companies ranking in the world’s top 10.
- Global leader in the fields of education, having the world’s highest scientific literacy and second highest mathematical literacy
and it is a trend setting country in Asia, exerting strong cultural influence over the continent in a phenomenon known as the Korean wave.
The Korean government promoted the import of raw materials and technology at the expense of consumer goods and encouraged savings and investment over consumption. According to Euromonitor, a strategy research company for consumer markets, sales of direct selling in Korea increased by 3% in 2009, and a positive growth rate continued in 2010 as value sales increased by 2%.
Direct selling enjoyed very strong growth rates in the early 2000s, but they declined or fluctuated after 2002. The representative surviving products are beauty and personal care, like those of AmorePacific Corp, healthcare and books (including educational materials).
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