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Jan. 8 (Yonhap) -- South Korean contractors won a record US$25.4
billion worth of foreign industrial plant orders in 2006, a
government report said Monday.
S. Korea's plant export orders reach
record US$25.4 bln in 2006
The number represents a 60.6 percent jump from the year before
and reflects a surge in orders for oil, gas and petrochemical
plants and related infrastructure, the Ministry of Commerce,
Industry and Energy said.
"The sharp annual increase comes as oil rich countries are using
extra money earned from high prices to build industrial
facilities," said Cha Dong-hyung, head of the export and import
division at the ministry. The average price of Dubai brand oil
reached $61.90 per barrel last year from $49.37 the year before.
He said the increase also reflected the global competitiveness
of local construction and engineering companies, and made plant
exports a viable export industry.
Large scale maritime plant orders accounted for 41 percent of
orders won or $10.6 billion, followed by petrochemical plants
and power generation plants at 19 percent and 18 percent of the
total respectively, Cha said.
By region, oil rich Middle East countries placed 35 percent of
all orders won with Europe accounting for 19 percent.
"A noteworthy development is the fact that while South Korean
contractors won orders exceeding 1 billion from only four
countries in the Middle East, this has increased to 10
(countries)," the official said. He said the size of orders won
in Norway and the United States exceeded those for Saudi Arabia
and the United Arab Emirates.
In addition, orders won by small- and medium- size construction
companies in 2006 soared 198 percent to 122 deals totaling $1.51
billion from 92 orders totaling $507 million the previous year.
Most of these projects are worth less than $50 million.
For 2007, the ministry said plant export orders may reach $27.0
billion with maritime infrastructure facilities, liquified
natural gas and saltwater desalination facilities leading the