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Alibaba’s international arm is spending millions to expand into South Korea


Alibaba’s international e-commerce platform AliExpress has expanded in South Korea and Brazil, in addition to Europe. Pictured here is an AliExpress locker in Poland in July 2022.Nurphoto | Nurphoto | Getty ImagesBEIJING — Alibaba’s international e-commerce business AliExpress is spending the equivalent of $7 million to reach consumers in South Korea, the unit told CNBC in an exclusive interview.AliExpress said it launched three-to-five-day shipping to South Korea last year, allowing South Korean residents to buy some products, especially in fashion, from Taobao. That’s Alibaba’s main e-commerce site in China.In all, the business unit said it spent 10 billion won this year in South Korea to lower product prices. The company wants to “make sure we have the best pricing,” said Gary Topp, European commercial and marketing director at AliExpress.The investment looks to tap a market that’s valued at billions of dollars, and currently dominated by the U.S.South Koreans’ online purchases from foreign retail sites grew by $1 billion in 2021 to $4.5 billion, with 41% stemming from the U.S., according to a report in August by the U.S. International Trade Administration.”Although in 2020, the United States was ranked number one, other countries such as China are expanding thei …

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