The Korea Herald


Complaints over overseas online shopping soar

By 윤민식

Published : July 30, 2015 - 17:46

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Complaints related to direct purchases from overseas online websites have marked an eight-fold increase in the first half of this year, compared to the same period last year, Seoul city government said Thursday.

According to the Seoul Metropolitan government, 3,898 of such cases were registered to the Seoul Electronic Commerce Center, up from just 476 in the first half of 2014.

Over the past few years, direct purchasing from overseas has spread among Koreans, mainly because the exclusion of a middleman allows customers to buy the products cheaper. Last year, the government announced it would simplify the importation process to promote the market growth.

Earlier in the month, the Fair Trade Commission chief Chung Jae-chan acknowledged the issue and rolled out a series of countermeasures. This includes increasing the number of employees dealing with direct purchasing-related issues and launching a website by September providing the users with the information they need when buying directly from overseas websites.

Inconvenience related to online shopping from overseas websites accounted for 37 percent of total complaints registered to the center. Complaints related to local online shopping malls accounted for 49.5 percent.

By Yoon Min-sik