S. Korea raises 2016 economic growth to 2.8%

Revised statistics show South Korea's manufacturing sector expanded 2.3 percent last year

Asia's fourth-largest economy grew slightly more than previously thought in each of the past two years, South Korean authorities said Tuesday.

The central Bank of Korea raised its figure for the 2016 economic growth rate by 0.1 percentage points to 2.8 percent, saying the manufacturing sector performed better than earlier estimated.

It also raised the 2015 figure from 2.6 percent to 2.8 percent, so that last year's rise in gross domestic product (GDP) was unchanged from the previous year.

Decades of rapid growth saw the South rise from the ashes of the Korean War to become a member of the OECD group of leading economies, but expansion has slowed more recently.

Economic frustrations were among the factors underlying the giant anti-corruption protests that saw president Park Geun-Hye impeached.

Per capita gross national income (GNI) came to $27,561 in 2016, up 1.4 percent from the previous year, the Bank of Korea said.

The manufacturing sector expanded 2.3 percent last year, it said, rather than the 1.7 percent figure it gave in January and the 1.8 percent in 2015.

Exports grew 2.1 percent in 2016, a reverse from a 0.1 percent contraction the previous year, while imports increased 4.5 percent, up from 2.1 percent.

South Korea issues its first figure for the previous year's growth in January. It then revises it in March, and the final statistic is given in the same month the following year.