Wednesday, November 16, 2022
Round-up of important news from major Korean dailies and from international media today
The Korea Post ( www.koreapost.com )
K Shipbuilding receives an order for four 50,000-ton class MR tankers
K Shipbuilding announced that it signed a shipbuilding contract for four 50,000-ton petrochemical product carriers from a shipping company in the Middle East on Nov. 11. The contracted vessel is an LNG fuel propulsion Ready and crubber (desulfurization device) Ready vessel, which is an eco-friendly vessel that satisfies the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) Phase 3 Index, an environmental regulation of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), which will be further strengthened from 2025.
The 2nd World Conference on Early Childhood Care and Education held in Tashkent
The following is the full text of the address by the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev at the Second World Conference on Early Childhood Care and Education in Tashkent. Distinguished conference participants! Ladies and gentlemen! I sincerely congratulate you on the opening of the Second World Conference on Early Childhood Care and Education in Tashkent. I extend my sincere gratitude and best wishes to the distinguished guests, the heads of international organizations, the ministers and representatives of foreign countries participating in the international conference.
Gyeongsangnam-do Gov. Park meets with Hungarian new ambassador to Korea
Governor Park Wan-soo of Gyeongsangnam-do Province met with Hungary's new ambassador to South Korea, Istvan Szerdalheyi, at the reception room of the provincial government on Nov. 14. The meeting was made during Amb. Szerdalheyi’s visit to Gyeongsangnam-do Province, which had a friendly relationship with the Fejér Megye State of Hungary. Governor Park said, "Hungary has been the first Eastern European country to establish diplomatic relations with the Republic of Korea in 1989, and we look forward to continuing to strengthen friendly relations between Gyeongsangnam-do and the Fejér Megye State of Hungary."
Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
Koreans Still Work Longer Hours Than Most Rich Countries
Koreans still worked the fifth-longest hours in the OECD last year with 1,915 hours even though the working week has been capped for some years. In 2011 Koreans worked the longest at 2,136 hours, but the current figure is still 199 hours longer than the average in the 38 OECD member states of 1,716 hours. The reason Korea moved down the rankings is not just that the working week here was capped at 52 hours but also because two other countries with longer work hours -- Costa Rica with 2,073 hours and Colombia with 1,964 hours -- newly joined the rich countries club.
S.Korea, U.S., Japan Vow to Contain N.Korea, China
The leaders of South Korea, the U.S. and Japan pledged to put up a united front against the North Korean nuclear threat and China. In a joint statement Sunday they vowed to coordinate their response to the North Korean nuclear threat, global supply chains, energy and security issues and climate change. "Trilateral cooperation between South Korea, the U.S. and Japan that began with responses to North Korea's nuclear threat is growing into a cooperative framework playing a much wider role including a concerted response to China," a government official here said.
Korean Motorists Resist Eco Revolution
Seven of the 10 bestselling cars in Korea from January to September were mid-sized or bigger even though wallets are shrinking. The Carnival, Grandeur, G80, K80, Palisade, Sonata and Sorento ruled the roost, and four of them are large cars. The proportion of large cars has doubled over the last six years, threatening pledges to reduce carbon emissions and lighten snarled traffic. That bucks the trend in advanced regions like Europe, where all of the 10 bestselling cars were subcompacts or compacts, or Japan, where nine out of the 10 were.
Joongang Ilbo (https://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com )
Yoon has first summit with China's Xi in Bali
President Yoon Suk-yeol called for more "mature" bilateral relations in his first summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Indonesia Tuesday. "I hope we can work together for a mature South Korea-China relationship based on mutual respect," Yoon said in opening remarks at the beginning of the summit, noting that the two countries celebrated the 30th anniversary of bilateral ties this year.
It was the first summit between the leaders of South Korea and China in nearly three years.
Go to the cloud or 'fall behind,' Microsoft's Nadella says
Microsoft, the world's No. 2 cloud provider, warns Korean companies to move to the cloud or "fall behind."“By 2025, 95 percent of the workloads are not just going to be about moving to the cloud but going to be cloud-optimized or cloud-native. So you can easily fall behind if you’re not part of that 95 percent,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said on Tuesday at the “Microsoft Ignite Spotlight on Korea" that took place at the InterContinental Seoul Coex, southern Seoul. This is the first time in four years for the Microsoft CEO to visit Korea.
ASML to cater to domestic demand with new chip complex
ASML, a Dutch semiconductor equipment supplier, is breaking ground for its chip complex in Hwaseong, Gyeonggi, Wednesday. A day prior to the groundbreaking ceremony, the Veldhoven, Netherlands-based company held a press conference at Coex in southern Seoul, with ASML CEO Peter Wennink in attendance. The new 16,000-square-meter (72,222-square-foot) Hwaseong Campus, which will be a local repair center and a training facility, will help ASML meet Korean customers’ demand more efficiently amid the rising complexity of the global chip business and technology, said Wennink.
The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)
Fed vice chair says it may soon be appropriate to slow rate hikes
“I think it will probably be appropriate soon to move to a slower pace of rate increases,” said Federal Reserve Vice Chair Lael Brainard in a live interview with Bloomberg News. Pundits suggest her remarks hint at the possibility that the Fed might shift the gear down from the giant step (an increase of 0.75 percentage points of base rate) to the big step (an increase of 0.5 percent points).
DP lambasts prosecution for investigating Jeong Jin-sang
The Democratic Party of Korea criticized the prosecution for summoning Jeong Jin-sang, chief of the party’s political coordination office, calling it “human hunting.” At the same time, the ruling People Power Party denounced the DP that it described has lost reason for being too obsessed with defending party leader Lee Jae-myung. At the press conference held in the National Assembly, the committee for responding against prosecution-led political oppression under the Democratic Party called specific criminal charges on the search and seizure warrant issued against Mr. Jeong as “nonsense.”
Minister Lee Sang-min apologizes for the comment
Minister of Interior and Safety Lee Sang-min apologized for his remarks of “resigning in a fancy manner” on Monday. The Democratic Party urged Minister Lee to resign, criticizing the minister for not stepping down. Lawmaker Jeong Woon-chan of the People Power Party also criticized the minister at the Special Committee Meeting on Budget and Accounts for his remarks in a recent interview that “who would not want to resign in a fancy manner and escape from this situation,” stating that his remarks have become disputable again.
Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
U.K. raises concern over Korean Air-Asiana merger
Britain’s antitrust regulator has expressed concerns over Korean Air Line Co.’s planned merger with smaller rival Asiana Airlines Inc., requesting the national flag carrier submit a plan that will resolve its monopoly, which could lead to higher fares and reduced quality of service for passengers flying between London and Seoul. Korean Air will become Asiana’s biggest shareholder with a 64 percent stake if the buyout is completed.
SK geo centric secures $359 mn through ESG-backed loans
SK geo centric Co., a chemical unit of South Korea’s SK Group, has secured 475 billion won ($358.6 million) in loans backed by its environment target initiatives from global lenders. SK geo centric said Tuesday it signed a three-year sustainability-linked loan (SSL) with five global lenders at SK headquarters in central Seoul. The five are - BNP Paribas S.A., Agricultural Bank of China, the Bank of China, MUFG Bank, and Credit Agricole Corporate & Investment Bank.
Korean firms report increased assets and liabilities related to emission rights
South Korea’s major listed companies saw their assets and liabilities related to emission rights increase last year along with the trading volume in the local carbon market, data showed on Tuesday. Top 30 listed businesses allocated the rights held a total of 746.4 billion won ($566.4 million) in assets related to emission rights as of the end of 2021, up by 42.5 percent from a year earlier, according to data from the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS).
HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
Yoon’s Indo-Pacific strategy leans worryingly in favor of US
At a summit between South Korea and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations members on Friday, South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol announced his administration’s “Indo-Pacific strategy.” Given that past South Korean administrations had avoided even using the phrase “Indo-Pacific strategy” — in light of its associations with US efforts to curb China — this announcement was seen as a major shift in approach. Coming at a time when the confrontation between the US and China is becoming even more sharply defined, this sort of excessive US bias in our policy approach is a worrying development that could trigger objections from China, which is South Korea’s biggest single trade partner.
Yoon ditches balanced diplomacy for US bandwagon
Through the joint statement adopted Sunday by the leaders of the US, South Korea, and Japan, the three countries made clear their plans to keep not just North Korea, but also China and Russia, in check. As a result, there is a possibility that the geopolitical composition of Northeast Asia may begin to change. The “Phnom Penh Statement on Trilateral Partnership for the Indo-Pacific” is comprehensive in its content, covering not just security but also the economy, climate and the environment, and also supply chains and data distribution.
Biden, Xi use first in-person summit to reaffirm respective “red lines”
The world watched with bated breath as US President Joe Biden shared an eight-second handshake with his “old friend,” Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Shortly afterward, Xi’s interpreter conveyed a message from him to Biden. CNN reported that the message appeared to be “Good to see you.” At 5:30 pm on Monday, Biden met with Xi at the luxury Mulia Hotel on the southern coast of Bali, the setting for the G-20 Summit. Biden was coming off of a significant victory for his Democratic Party in the US midterm elections on Nov. 8 and had taken steps to beef up trilateral cooperation with China’s neighbors South Korea and Japan, while Xi had reinforced his system of “one-person rule” when he locked down a third term as president last month.
The KyungHyangShinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Former Defense Minister Suh Wook Released, Pulling the Brakes on the Investigation of the “Masterminds” Behind the Yellow Sea Murder Case
On November 8, the court released Suh Wook (pictured), former minister of national defense, who was arrested for his involvement in the murder of a civil servant in the Yellow Sea. He was released seventeen days after his arrest. This may pull the brakes on the prosecutors’ investigation, which was heading toward high-ranking officials in Moon Jae-in’s Cheongwadae. On Tuesday, the Criminal Appeal Division 5-2 (chief judges Won Jeong-suk, Jeong Deok-su, Choi Byeong-ryul) of the Seoul Central District Court held a habeas corpus proceeding requested by Suh and released the former minister on condition that he pay a deposit of 100 million won.
Prosecutors Question Jeong Jin-sang, One of Lee Jae-myung’s Closest Aides
On November 15, prosecutors called in Jeong Jin-sang, director of political affairs in the Democratic Party of Korea leader’s office, charged for receiving bribes from a private developer involved in the Daejang-dong development in Seongnam-si, Gyeonggi. Jeong is known as one of Lee Jae-myung’s closest aides, along with Kim Yong, vice president of the Institute for Democracy, who was prosecuted earlier. The prosecutors are expected to further press Jeong by seeking an arrest warrant this week.
“We’ll See If They Investigate Higher Ranking Officials” Police Infuriated by the Death of the Yongsan Police Station Intelligence Chief
A, head of public safety and intelligence at the Yongsan Police Station in Seoul, was found dead after being questioned for allegedly cajoling employees to delete an intelligence report. His death has fueled criticism from inside the police about the investigation conducted by the special investigation headquarters in the National Police Agency. The police argue that the investigation headquarters is targeting public officials on the field, such as police officers and firefighters, while leaving the higher-ranking officials untouched.
Yoon Returns from Southeast Asia Tour
President Yoon Suk Yeol has returned home after a six-day tour to Southeast Asia to attend international forums and summit talks on the sidelines. The presidential jet carrying Yoon and his entourage landed at Seoul Air Base in Seongnam at 6:40 a.m. on Wednesday, concluding a trip to Cambodia and Indonesia for various summits involving the Association of Southeast Asian Nations(ASEAN) and the Group of 20(G20) summit. At the ASEAN summit in Phnom Penh, Yoon unveiled South Korea's new Indo-Pacific strategy focused on creating a free, peaceful and prosperous region.
Report: Russian Missiles Land in Poland, Killing 2
Poland has reported that two missiles believed to have been fired by Russia struck Polish territory along its border with Ukraine on Tuesday, killing two people. According to Polish radio ZET, two people died Tuesday afternoon after two projectiles struck Przewodów, a Polish village near the border with eastern Ukraine, causing an explosion. The explosion prompted Poland, a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization(NATO), to convene an emergency national security meeting and elevate the military readiness level.
Int'l Federation of Journalists Condemns Ban of MBC from Pres. Plane
The International Federation of Journalists(IFJ) has condemned the presidential office's decision to bar reporters of local broadcaster MBC from boarding the presidential plane during President Yoon Suk Yeol's tour of Southeast Asia. The IFJ said in a statement on its website that it condemns the exclusion of media based on critical reporting of the president and his administration. Calling for South Korea’s proud history of democracy and press freedom to be defended, the organization said that Yoon's continued targeting of MBC "sets a dangerous precedent."
Yoon asks China's Xi to play more active, constructive role on N. Korea
President Yoon Suk-yeol asked Chinese President Xi Jinping to play a more active and constructive role in dealing with North Korea's nuclear program during their first summit talks in Bali on Tuesday. Yoon's request came as North Korea has sharply escalated tensions with a barrage of missile tests and simulations of a nuclear strike on South Korea, and amid concern it could conduct what would be its seventh nuclear test soon. China, North Korea's only major ally and economic benefactor, has long been thought to have the leverage to rein in the North's nuclear ambitions.
ASML's expansion in S. Korea reflects its 'preparation for growth': CEO
The CEO of the Dutch chip equipment maker ASML Holding NV said Tuesday building a new chip cluster in South Korea reflects the company's preparation for sustained growth in what he said is an industry that will only continue to expand. Building a Korean supply base "is a significant opportunity" for the company to grow further, ASML President and CEO Peter Wennink said during a press briefing in Seoul. Wennink is visiting the country to attend a groundbreaking ceremony, slated for Wednesday, for a new US$181 million chip cluster in Hwaseong, some 40 kilometers south of Seoul.
Yoon returns home from Southeast Asia trip
President Yoon Suk-yeol returned to Seoul on Wednesday following a tour of Cambodia and Indonesia that included his attendance at regional gatherings and his first summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping. In Phnom Penh, Yoon unveiled South Korea's new Indo-Pacific strategy focused on creating a free, peaceful and prosperous region, before attending summits involving the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and multiple bilateral summits, including one with U.S. President Joe Biden and one with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.
The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
Yoon, Xi share views for peace on Korean peninsula
President Yoon Suk-yeol expressed caution against protectionism and vowed Korea's support for the G-20's cooperation in the food and energy sectors as well as contributions to international solidarity in the health sector, at the G-20 Summit on Tuesday. On the sidelines of the summit, Yoon had a bilateral summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping in the evening to discuss China's role in resolving the North Korean nuclear issue at a time when its seventh nuclear test could take place at any moment amid North Korea's all-out provocations.
Biden-Xi summit show desire for improved ties despite tension
US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping held their first in-person bilateral summit on Monday, where they each showed a desire to improve US-China ties that have hit rock bottom in recent years. While they continue to stand at odds on key issues, including Taiwan, experts assess that Monday's summit will positively improve bilateral ties and reduce tensions.
On the eve of the Group 20 Summit in Bali, Indonesia, Biden and Xi met for about three hours, according to officials.
Hyundai Motor to build air mobility ecosystem in Indonesia’s new capital
Hyundai Motor Group on Monday unveiled a new ambitious plan to build an ecosystem for advanced air mobility (AAM), including flying cars and related infrastructure, in Indonesia’s new capital city of Nusantara that is currently under construction. The Korean auto giant signed a memorandum of understanding with the Nusantara National Capital Authority for the new project on the sidelines of the B-20 Summit Indonesia 2022, which is taking place in Bali this week. Earlier this year, the Indonesian government announced a plan to move its capital from Jakarta on the island of Java to Nusantara, a new forest city on the island of Borneo. Nearly $33 billion will be spent on building the new metropolis, while the relocation is expected to take almost a decade.
The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
Yoon urges Xi to 'play active role' in reining in North Korea
President Yoon Suk-yeol and Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday showed subtle differences in their perceptions toward North Korea's nuclear and missile threats. During the first Seoul-Beijing summit held in nearly three years, President Yoon called for China to play an "active and constructive role" in reining in North Korea to stop its provocations amid its continued launches of various missiles, despite international condemnation. In response, the Chinese leader urged South Korea to find its role and do as much as it can in order to get inter-Korean relations back on the right track.
Russian-made missile fell on our country, killing 2: Poland
The Polish Foreign Ministry said early Wednesday that a Russian-made missile fell in eastern Poland and killed two people. The ministry said Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau summoned the Russian ambassador and ''demanded immediate detailed explanations.'' The statements came shortly after Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelenskyy decried the missile strike as ''a very significant escalation'' of his country's war with Russia. Zelenskyy on Tuesday decried an apparent Russian missile strike that hit neighboring NATO member Poland as ''a very significant escalation'' of the war.
Korean Air to submit more materials to UK government concerning Asiana Airlines takeover
Korean Air plans to submit additional data to address monopoly concerns over its scheduled takeover of Asiana Airlines raised by British competition authorities, the air carrier said Tuesday. The British Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced that it would suspend its review, saying that the acquisition could result in higher prices and lower-quality service for passengers traveling between London and Seoul. "The announcement of the CMA is an interim result of the business combination review and is not a final decision," a Korean Air official said. "We are currently discussing detailed corrective measures with the British authorities."
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