The Textile and Apparel Industry in South Korea

The Textile and Apparel Industry in South Korea

After a significant period of economic instability, South Korea has now emerged as one of the largest economies in Asia, ranking the 12th largest economy in the world. It has made its mark as a global innovative leader. One of the major contributors to the country’s significant fiscal growth is the industrial sector.

The main branches included in this sector are; manufacturing, mining, construction, electricity and water and gas. Out of all these subsectors, the one that has been contributing most to the growth of the Korean economy is the manufacturing sector.

As of 2021, manufacturing contributed about 28% of the country’s GDP. Within this industry, the textile and apparel industry in particular is showing growth and development. If you are interested in an internship abroad, an internship in the textile and apparel industry in South Korea can be your first step into this career path.

The Textile Industry

The textile industry is a growing and constantly evolving industry. And while COVID-19 has posed some challenges to the industry, it is expected to bounce back much stronger. In a lot of ways, it is considered the starting point for all the other industries to function and flourish.

Without the textile and apparel industry, raw materials for clothing and household utensils would not be available. The global textile and apparel industry had a retail value market of about $1.9 trillion in 2019. It is expected to reach up to $3.3 trillion by 2030.


Fig 1. Textile and Apparel Industry (Source: Pexels)

The textile industry also constitutes an important share of the total exports in the world, contributing immensely to the global markets. As we notice shifts in markets and business strategies, the textile industry must also make swift changes to their economic structure if they want to maintain steady growth in a market after the pandemic.

This includes broadening the processing capabilities, improving the infrastructure gaps, developing sustainable textiles and improving the image of a country so that other nations will see it as a destination of choice for their go-to textile and apparel industry.

The Textile and Apparel Industry in South Korea

The textile industry in South Korea played a vital role in the country’s initial stages of industrialization. Now it is still seeing steady growth with an expected export reach of about $14.32 billion in 2021.

South Korea

Fig 2. South Korea (Source: Pexels)

Moreover, the textile industry in South Korea is a substantial exporter of raw materials with an extensive synthetic fabric industry. With the country’s retail industry gaining momentum in its profits, the textile industry is working hard on improving its processing and distribution techniques, contributing to the value-adding of its exports.

With the booming growth of Korean culture due to the large influence of the K-Pop culture, the retail industry in the country has opened doors for a lot of opportunities and market growth for international brands. And to catch up with the rapid evolution of the Korean fashion trends, textile industries have to be quite innovative and quick in developing new technologies to match the demands of the consumers. To help the industry reach its export target, the country has signed a free trade agreement (FTAs) with a number of countries in the world.

Fabric Samples

Fig 3. Fabric Samples (Source: Pexels)

If you want to learn more about the retail industry and how the raw materials are being supplied, South Korea is a great place to start. The textile and retail industry is constantly innovating with the development of new technologies.

The current structure of the economy has also played a big role in the way this industry has conducted its business. South Korea is able to adapt and match these trends with efficiency and accuracy. An internship in South Korea will be greatly beneficial to you learning about the latest fashion trends in the textile industry.

Why AIP?

An internship with AIP will not only ensure you are placed with a company that meets your expectations. It will also provide you with an experience of a lifetime. During your internship in South Korea, you will get the chance to fully immerse yourself in the culture, meet people from different backgrounds and enjoy the amazing infrastructure of the country.

South Korea is one of the biggest economies in Asia and has a very quirky and notable fashion scene. Explore the latest fashion trends and expand your knowledge of the current export methods. With the current boom of the Korean economy, this is a great opportunity to learn more about it and pave a path for yourself in your desired field.


Fig 4. Samples (Source: Pexels)

Apply to AIP!

If you want to learn more about the programs we offer, visit our website and apply for an internship today! South Korea has a lot to offer and with a booming industry, your opportunities in this country are endless. Take the first step and embark on an unforgettable journey with AIP!


Learn more about our internships!