South Korea energy report

This analysis includes a comprehensive South Korea energy market report and updated datasets. It is derived from the most recent key economic indicators, supply and demand factors, oil and gas pricing trends and major energy issues and developments surrounding the energy industry. The report provides a complete picture of the country situation, dynamics, current issues and future prospects. With 2019 market data and continuous follow-up of markets news, this report brings clear and concise insights with which to tackle national energy challenges and opportunities. Browse the tabs below for a detailed table of contents, the list of graphs and tables, and details on the data files.

South Korea energy report
November 2020
4 files (PDF report, 3 Excel files)
36 (Report only)

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  • The country pledged to reach carbon neutrality by 2050.
  • The electricity and gas supply is dominated by two public companies, KEPCO and Kogas. The oil refining and distribution is controlled by private players.
  • Electricity production stagnated in 2019. CO2 free power sources accounted for 31% of the power mix, against 42% from coal.
  • Electricity prices have fallen by 11% (industry) and 23% (households) since 2014.
  • Final energy consumption has remained stable since 2016.
  • Renewables should represent 40% of the power capacity in 2034, while the share of nuclear and coal should be reduced to 15% and 10%, respectively.


biggest LNG importer in the world (2019)

+6.3 GW

installed capacity in 2019


share of renewables in power mix in 2019


  • Institutions & Energy Policy

    The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE) oversees energy policy planning and supervises the energy firms and energy administrations.

  • Energy Supply


    Korea depends on imports to meet its entire oil demand. Thanks to the increase in its refining capacities, Korea has been a net exporter of oil products since 1997. In 2019, net oil product exports stood at around 27 Mt and net crude oil imports were 146 Mt.

    Korea depends on the Middle East for most of its crude oil imports, but aims for greater import supply diversification.

  • Energy Prices


    The average gas price was US$4.4c/kWh for industry and US$5.5c/kWh for households (2019). Prices have remained relatively stable since 2016, following a significant decrease over 2014-2016.


  • Energy Consumption

    Total energy consumption has remained steady since 2016 (294 Mtoe in 2019), after a period of regular growth (2.7%/year over 2000-2016).

    Oil covers 37% of the energy needs, coal 26%, gas 16%, primary electricity 14% (of which nuclear 13%, hydro and solar 1%), and biomass 7%. This mix is similar to that in 2010, although coal was slightly higher (29%) and biomass lower (4%).

  • Issues & Prospects

    KEEI's Korea Mid-Term Energy Demand Outlook (2019) foresees growth in the total energy consumption of around 1.5%/year over 2018-2023.

    According to forecasts from the POLES model, which is Enerdata's in-house model for Global Energy Markets, the country's consumption should decrease slightly between 2025 and 2050 if its NDC commitments are met.

Table of Contents


Download the Table of Contents

List of Graphs

Below is a list of the South Korea energy market report graphs:

  • GRAPH 1: CO2-energy emissions (MtCO2)
  • GRAPH 2: Installed electric capacity by source (2019, %)
  • GRAPH 3: Gross power production by source (TWh)
  • GRAPH 4: Power generation by source (2019, %)
  • GRAPH 5: Gasoline & diesel prices (US$/l)
  • GRAPH 6: Electricity prices for industry and households (US$c/kWh)
  • GRAPH 7: Gas prices for industry and households (US$c/kWh GCV)
  • GRAPH 8: Consumption trends by energy source (Mtoe)
  • GRAPH 9: Total consumption market share by energy (2019, %)
  • GRAPH 10: Final consumption Market share by sector (2019, %)
  • GRAPH 11: Oil consumption (Mt)
  • GRAPH 12: Oil consumption breakdown by sector (2019, %)
  • GRAPH 13: Electricity consumption (TWh)
  • GRAPH 14: Electricity consumption breakdown by sector (2019, %)
  • GRAPH 15: Natural gas consumption (bcm)
  • GRAPH 16: Gas consumption breakdown by sector (2019, %)
  • GRAPH 17: Coal consumption (Mt)
  • GRAPH 18: Coal consumption breakdown by sector (2019, %)

List of Tables

In the South Korea energy market report you will find the following tables:

  • Economic Indicators: Annual historical data including population, GDP growth, imports and exports, inflation rate, energy security and efficiency indicators, CO2 emissions.
  • Supply Indicators: Historical data including oil and gas reserves, electric and refining capacity, energy production, power production and external trade. All are detailed by energy source.
  • Demand Indicators: Historical data including consumption per inhabitant, consumption trends, total consumption by energy source, final consumption by energy source and sector, and electricity consumption by sector.
  • Energy Balances: Single table displaying the overall energy industry balance per annum, also graphically displayed by energy sub-segment.
  • Infrastructure Projects: Covers power plant projects by energy, technology, status and operator, gas plant projects by status and operator and LNG contracts.

Data (Excel Sheet)

The South Korea energy market data since 1990 and up to 2019 is included in the Excel file accompanying the South Korea country report.
It showcases the historical evolution, allowing users to easily work with the data.

Key Data included in the excelsheet:

  • Economic indicators: Annual historical economic indicators, energy security, energy efficiency and CO2 emissions.
  • Supply indicators: Annual historical reserves, capacity, production and external trade (imports(+) exports(-) balance).
  • Demand indicators: Annual historical consumption per capita, consumption trends, total consumption, final consumption (per energy and per sector) and electricity consumption total and per sector.
  • Energy Balance: total and per energy.
  • South Korea Energy Prices: In addition to the analysis provided on the report we also provided a data set which includes historical details on the South Korea energy prices for the follow items: price of premium gasoline (taxes incl.), price of diesel (taxes incl.), price of electricity in industry (taxes incl.), price of electricity for households (taxes incl.), price of natural gas in industry (taxes incl.), prices of natural gas for households (taxes incl.), spot price of Brent and CO2 emissions (from fuel combustion).

The South Korea country report is complemented with a national power generation dashboard (excel file) from our Power Plant Tracker Service.

Data included in the excelsheet:

  • New capacities: Current power mix, installed capacity at date, capacity under construction and under development.
  • Power Sector Performances: Historical data on installed capacity, power generation, thermal power plants inputs, average thermal power plant efficiency, CO2 emissions of the power sector, carbon factor of the power sector.


Projections Data (Excel Sheet)

The South Korea country dashboards are complemented with country forecasts from EnerFuture (excel file) with scenario comparison.

Data included in the excelsheet:

  • Demand: Primary energy consumption, final energy consumption, by fuel, by sector.
  • Power: Electricity generation & capacities, by technology.
  • CO2: Total CO2 emissions.
  • Macro-economy: Main macro-economic assumptions.
  • Key indicators: Energy intensity, share of renewables, CO2 emissions per capita and per unit of GDP.

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