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|SEOUL Authentic Tomas Tatar Jersey , April 23 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's economic growth stayed below 1 percent for four straight quarters due to the sluggishness in exports and private consumption, boosting worries about a prolonged trend of low growth, central bank data showed Thursday.
Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased 0.8 percent in the first quarter from three months earlier, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK). It was roughly in line with the BOK's growth outlook and market expectations.
The BOK revised down its 2015 growth outlook to 3.1 percent in March from 3.4 percent estimated three months earlier. It was far lower than the government's growth forecast for 2015 at 3.8 percent.
After rebounding to 1.1 percent in the first quarter of 2014, the real GDP growth stayed below 1 percent, with 0.5 percent in the second quarter of 2014 Authentic Gustav Nyquist Jersey , 0.8 percent in the third quarter and 0. 3 percent in the fourth quarter.
From a year earlier, the real GDP expanded 2.4 percent in the first quarter, the lowest in two years.
The slow growth came amid the sluggishness in both exports and private consumption, boosting worries that the South Korean economy might fall into the prolonged trend of low growth.
The cheaper oil reduced production costs of companies, lowering living costs for households, but the weakened sentiment among consumers prevented the economy from getting back on the recovery track.
Private consumption rose 0.6 percent in the first quarter from the prior quarter. Growth in facility investment sank from 4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2014 to zero in the first quarter.
Construction investment surged 7.5 percent in the first quarter Authentic Justin Abdelkader Jersey , marking the highest growth in about 14 years and turning around from a 7.8 percent reduction in the fourth quarter of last year.
Exports, which account for around half of the economy, were unchanged in the first quarter compared with the prior quarter due to weak demand for locally-made automobiles and display panels.
Import growth slid from 0.7 percent in the fourth quarter of last year to 0.5 percent in the first quarter, indicating the faltering domestic demand.
On the production front, output among manufacturers increased 0. 4 percent on-quarter in the first quarter. Those in the construction sector expanded 2.5 percent, but production in the electricity Authentic Nick Jensen Jersey , tap water and gas declined 3.6 percent. Service industry production rose 0.9 percent.
Gross domestic income (GDI), which gauges all income earned while producing goods and services, advanced 3.6 percent in the first quarter from three months earlier, marking the highest growth in about six years. The figure represents the real purchasing power of final products.
SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 8 (Xinhua) -- A new study calls for special business model for developing low-cost, off-grid solar energy in some remote areas where costs and remote terrain often make it impractical or even impossible to extend the electric grid.
Around the world Cheap Jonathan Ericsson Jersey , more than 1.2 billion people lack access to basic electricity service, and the majority of those people are living in developing nations, in rural or isolated areas with high rates of poverty.
When rural, isolated communities do gain access to solar power, the impact on residents can be profound, said Inara Scott Cheap Darren Helm Jersey , an assistant professor in the College of Business at Oregon State University (OSU) and the author of a study published in Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews. Children are more likely to go to and complete schooling, because they have light to study by. Kerosene lamps, which create indoor air pollution, are no longer needed, improving people's health. And work hours are increased, giving people more time to earn money or build home-based businesses.
The market for small solar lighting and charging units has grown dramatically in the last few years Cheap Martin Frk Jersey , and solar home systems offer cleaner, safer and cheaper lighting over time than kerosene. But even a small cost can be out of reach for people whose annual incomes are often less than 3,000 U.S. dollars per year, Scott said.
By examining successful business models for serving these populations, known as "base of the pyramid" markets, and successful renewable energy enterprises Cheap Luke Glendening Jersey , looking for intersections that might aid businesses looking to market solar energy to base-of-pyramid markets, she found that a successful enterprise would include four primary components:
-- Community interaction: Work with local communities to understand local norms, culture, social issues and economic systems that might influence the effort;
-- Partnerships: Join forces with other companies, government organizations, non-profit groups or non-governmental organizations to share ideas and resources and gain support;
-- Local capacity building: People in the community may lack product knowledge and have little experience with technology Cheap Henrik Zetterberg Jersey , while the community may not have typical distribution channels. Consider the potential customers as both producers and consumers, training local entrepreneurs as distributors, marketers and equipment installationrepair technicians;
-- Barriers unique to the off-grid market: Address issues such as financing of upfront costs, which may be prohibitive to consumers; educate people on the products and their benefits; build trust in quality and reliability; and develop multiple strong distribution networks.
"Surviving and growing in this market is very different than in a typical commercial enterprise," she was quoted as saying in a news release from OSU. "You're not going to be successful just trying to sell a product. This is really a social enterprise, with the goal of trying to bring people out of poverty while also emphasizing sustainable development."
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