Korea's outbound foreign direct investment has surpassed 40 trillion won (US$35.2 billion) while that toward China has stayed at the same level for the past few years. The investment destinations that saw the largest increase last year were the United States and Vietnam.
According to overseas investment statistics released by Korea EximBank, the foreign direct investment sum of Korean companies has steadily increased since 2007 and reached a record high of $35.2 billion last year.
Meanwhile, the investment into China has plunged from $5.7 billion in 2007 to $3.2 billion in 2014 and then to $3.3 billion last year. The biggest reason for Korean FDI to China to shrink is the investment project undertaken in Xi'an by Samsung Electronics has been completed in 2013.
In contrast, the investment in the United States and Vietnam has increased by a large margin due to the construction of new production plants and the like. The investment amount last year to the United States was $12.9 billion, almost four times more than $3.3 billion into China. Last year's FDI to the United States has increased 123.6 percent from the previous year's $5.77 billion.
The investment to Vietnam increased last year to $2.27 billion from $1.15 billion in 2013. In the fast-growing Vietnamese economy of more than 6 percent a year, many of Korea's small- and medium-sized companies have moved their operations.