Infrastructure in South Korea

This page provides an overview of the infrastructure quality of South Korea using selected indicators. Where necessary, we add definitions and brief discussion. The goal is to give a concise summary on one page so that readers don't have to search for the relevant indicators on the entire website.

Note: To see how an indicator has evolved over time in South Korea, click on its name in the table. To see the global rankings of an indicator, click the Global rank number. Use the links to the right to explore pages on other topics.

Transportation
The road network is a basic part of the transportation infrastructure in every country around the world. The World Economic Forum provides an assessment of the capacity, efficiency, and safety of roads via the Road quality indicator. According to this indicator, South Korea ranks at place 16 globally. In 2015, the country had a score of 5.59 points on a scale from 1 (low road quality) to 7 (high road quality). Besides roads, the land transport infrastructure of South Korea also includes the railroad system. The country has 3648 km of rail lines available for train service. In terms of railroad infrastructure quality, South Korea gets 5.55 out of 7 points according to the World Economic Forum's assessment which ranks the country at place 10 in the 2015 world list.

A well-functioning national air transport system is essential for the modern economy. The World Economic Forum scores countries in terms of the quality of their air transport infrastructure from 1(extremely underdeveloped) to 7(extensive and efficient infrastructure). As of 2015, South Korea had a score of 5.46 points and a global rank of 28.

The 2015 World Competitiveness Report assesses the quality of the port infrastructure in South Korea with 5.23 out of 7 points. This score places the country at rank 27 globally. The high-quality port infrastructure ensures efficient port traffic and could boost the development of international trade.
Indicator
Value
Global rank
Year
Quality of roads, 1(low) - 7(high) 5.59 16 2015
Railroad lines, total length in km 3648 39 2014
Quality of railroad infrastructure, 1(low) - 7(high) 5.55 10 2015
Quality of air transport infrastructure, 1(low) - 7(high) 5.46 28 2015
Quality of port infrastructure, 1(low) - 7(high) 5.23 27 2015
Communication
The world access to telecommunication services has increased significantly over the past few decades and one of the reasons for that trend is the development of the communication systems. The mobile network coverage rate gives an approximate measure of the mobile communications infrastructure capacity.

According to the International Telecommunication Union, 99.90 percent of the population in South Korea is within range of a mobile cellular signal. However, some people located within an area with mobile signal are not mobile phone subscribers while others have more than one mobile phone subscription. The population access to mobile communication services could be measured by the mobile subscription density. In South Korea, there are 118.46 mobile cellular telephone subscription per 100 people. The indicator can exceed 100 because some people have more than one subscription to public mobile data services. In terms of mobile subscription density, South Korea ranks at place 73 globally.

The number of Internet subscribers worldwide has almost tripled in the past 10 years, approaching 1 billion subscriptions. In South Korea, 38.78 of every 100 people have a fixed broadband Internet subscription. The data cover both residential subscriptions and subscriptions for organizations. In terms of Internet subscription density, the country ranks at place 10 in the world.

The quality of the Internet connection in South Korea can be measured by the Internet bandwidth. That indicator represents the total capacity of all Internet exchanges offering international bandwidth. The International Telecommunication Union releases data on Internet bandwidth per user by country. The value for South Korea is 45.18 kilobits per second which ranks the country at place 57 globally.
Indicator
Value
Global rank
Year
Mobile network coverage, percent of the population 99.90 37 2016
Mobile phone subscribers per 100 people 118.46 73 2015
Number of Internet subscribers per 100 people 38.78 10 2014
Internet bandwidth per Internet user, kb/s 45.18 57 2016
Energy
As of 2012, 100.00 percent of the population in South Korea had access to electricity. The energy needs of the population are met through the maintenance of adequate energy infrastructure.

The total electricity installed capacity in South Korea was 87.85 million kilowatts in 2012 which ranks the country at place 13 in the world. The capacity data represent the maximum electric output that the country generators can produce. A high capacity allows a large amount of energy production. However, the electricity generators usually do not operate at full capacity all the time. The U.S. Energy Information Administration provides data on the production, consumption, import, and export of electricity across the world. In 2012, the electricity generators of South Korea produced a total annual electric output of 500.16 billion kilowatt hours. That level of electricity production ranks the country at place 10 in the world.
Indicator
Value
Global rank
Year
Access to electricity, percent of the population 100.00 See world ranking 2012
Electricity production capacity, million kilowatts 87.85 13 2012
Electricity production, billion kWh 500.16 10 2012
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