"Goheung is a pivotal city in space and drone industries"
"Goheung is a pivotal city in space and drone industries"
  • Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2023.05.02 17:31
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Interview with Mayor Gong Young-min of Goheung County

By Feature Editor Kim Hyung-dae with Reporter Lee Sam-sun

"The Goheung County is a space-centered city and also a 'drone-centered city' where we have an upper hand over other local governments in the fields of 'space industry' and 'drone industry' which are future-oriented industries that will lead Korea.” So emphasized Mayor Gong Young-min of the Goheung County of the Jeollanam-do Proince.

Speaking at a recent interview with The Korea Post media, publisher od 3 English and 2 Korean-language news publications since 1985, Mayor Gong said, "We are pushing for our administration with the top priority of securing growth engines and population inflows through fostering future-oriented industries."

Mayor Gong then said, "We want to create high-quality jobs and increase our local competitiveness by attracting young people from the city by creating a large-scale high-tech agricultural and livestock smart farm valley and building a tourism infrastructure based on clean natural scenery."

Mayor Gong Young-min of Goheung County and county officials visit the Kennedy Space Center to hear from officials.
Mayor Gong Young-min of Goheung County and county officials visit the Kennedy Space Center to hear from officials.

Excerpts from an interview with Mayor Gong by The Korea Post media follow:

Qustion: Please introduce the urban environment and competitiveness of the Goheung County.

Answer: Although Goheung-gun is currently a farming and fishing-oriented city with more than 60% of primary industry workers, it has an advantage over other local governments in the areas of "space industry" and "drone industry" that will lead Korea with the passage of time in the future.

The Gohung County had a maximum population of 235,000 in 1966, but has continued to decline since then, and it is currently staying at 62,000 and is suffering from problems such as aging and regional stagnation along with population decline.

However, in order to solve problems such as population decline, we are focusing on the space and drone industries, which are our strengths, the 8th popular election vision is "building a foundation for 100,000 people in 10 years."

Mayor Gong Young-min of Goheung County
Mayor Gong Young-min of Goheung County

Q: What are the main policies of the county?

A: The most important project to lead the change and development of Goheung is the creation of a space launch vehicle cluster.

As the government has declared a space powerhouse as a national strategic project, our county will also foster the space industry as the future industry of Goheung-gun and solidify its position as a space-oriented city.

First of all, by 2031, the Naro Space Center will invest 1.6 trillion won in state funds to create a space launch vehicle cluster.

Major projects include the creation of a national industrial complex, the construction of a space launch vehicle science complex, and the construction of a core infrastructure for private space development.

According to experts, the creation of a cluster is expected to have an economic inducement effect of 3.8 trillion won and employment inducement of 20,000 people.

The Space Launch Vehicle National Industrial Complex, a key project to create a projectile cluster, will be built on a scale of about 520,000 pyeong (1,729,176㎡) with a national budget of 380 billion won by 2030.

Kennedy Space Center
Kennedy Space Center

Q: What is Goheung-gun's specialization strategy?

A: Our county has excellent drone-related infrastructure such as the largest drone airspace in the country, the National Comprehensive Flight Performance Test Center, and the Goheung Drone Center. Based on its solid drone infrastructure, it is focusing its administrative power on preoccupying the Uam field

First of all, Korea's only K-UAM Grand Challenge test bed will be built around Goheung Bay Aviation Center by July this year with a cost of 11.3 billion won

Starting this year, local governments will hold the first drone and UAM expo in the country, the Goheung Aerospace Ship Drone Football National Competition and Drone Fishing Competition, and from May, we are preparing to present a drone show using 500 drones at Nokdong Port every Saturday at 9 p.m.

Q: Please explain about the Goheung Space Launch Vehicle National Industrial Complex

A: The Goheung Space Launch Vehicle National Industrial Complex will be built on a scale of about 520,000 pyeong (1,729,176㎡) by investing 380 billion won by 2030 in Bongrae-myeon, Goheung-gun.

The National Space Launch Vehicle Industrial Complex will be dominated by companies related to projectile materials, parts, and equipment, and our military will provide support to companies to successfully create industrial complexes and attract companies.

Q: What are the tourism policies and the direction of revitalizing the local economy?

A: In order to revitalize the local economy by achieving the "era of 10 million in Goheung tourism," we have prepared a roadmap for a mid- to long-term vision as a comprehensive development plan for Goheung tourism.

We plan to create large-scale accommodation facilities and golf courses by attracting investment, create a recreational village in Goheung through an investment agreement worth 200 billion won with LF on Dec. 14, 2022, and create arboretum, art museum, and accommodation facilities.

With "Content Hallyu" on its back, the status of K-food will increase day by day, opening a "new era of talent management" by BBQ Chairman Yoon Hong-geun

These days, K-food's status is increasing day by day with 'Content Hallyu' on its back. Chicken is an indispensable food when discussing the popularity of K-food. From crispy fried chicken to seasoned chicken and chicken and beer. Korea's unique chicken food culture is dominating the world.

Genesis BBQ, led by Chairman Yoon Hong-geun, is at the forefront of the "Chicken Hallyu." Starting with China in 2003, it has been operating 700 stores in 57 countries around the world in 19 years since it entered overseas markets, strengthening its position as a global restaurant brand representing K-chicken.

It has more than 150 stores in the United States alone, the most advanced country in franchises. It is on a roll, with U.S. corporate sales exceeding 100 billion won in 2021. Chairman Yoon's goal is to open 50,000 franchises around the world by 2030.

Foreign media are also publishing favorable reviews. In July last year, it ranked second in the list of "the fastest-growing restaurant brands in the United States" released by the global restaurant magazine "Nations Restaurant News." Famous U.S. broadcaster, FOX News, also extensively reported BBQ as a favorite "K-chicken" for locals in Florida.

In August last year, he received a citation from the New Jersey State Legislature, where the BBQ U.S. corporation is located. Genesis BBQ contribution to economic development and job creation in New Jersey was recognized. Representative Ellen Park of New Jersey delivered the citation, saying, "I would like to thank Chairman Yoon Hong-geun, who has contributed greatly to job creation in New Jersey through continuous investment despite being a foreign company in a difficult situation around the world."

Chairman Yoon also rolled up his sleeves to foster talent for domestic restaurant franchises. In January this year, Genesis BBQ raised the annual salary of new college graduates by 33.5% from 34 million won as of 2022 to 45.4 million won. Beyond chicken franchises, it is also the highest in the restaurant franchise industry, approaching the average annual salary of new employees at large domestic companies.

It is judged that securing talented people with potential is the most important thing to overcome economic crises such as global inflation and interest rate hikes. Chairman Yoon said; "We will foster young and fresh talent with the best treatment in the industry and open the 'new talent management era' as the world's top restaurant company."

Samyang Ramen, the first ramen in Korea.

3.2 billion packs of Samyang Ramen were sold. This is the amount of 'K ramen' consumed in the global market except for Korea last year. If we divide this by the number of people in the world of 8 billion, it means that one person in every 2.5 people abroad ate K ramen.

Jungfrau, Switzerland's top tourist attraction called the roof of Europe, and rural villages in Ladakh, northern India, where electricity comes in for only three hours a day, also smell of ramen that reminds the people of the "spicy taste of Koreans." It is not just a reflection of the K-content craze.

Behind the popularity of K ramen is the efforts of food companies that have strengthened research and development by establishing thorough localization strategies to promote the taste of Korea to the world for 60 years since the launch of Samyang Ramen, the first ramen in Korea, in 1963.

According to related industries on the 20th, domestic companies such as Ottogi and Samyang Foods exported overseas or produced locally last year to 2.3 trillion won, up more than 20% from the previous year.

If this is converted into the factory price (726 won) of a bag of "Shin Ramen," sales amount to 3.2 billion units. Considering that Koreans consumed 3.2 billion ramen a year in 2012, 10 years ago, it is meaningful that the global market has grown as much as the domestic market.

The industry expects overseas sales to surpass domestic sales this year. Ramen sales sold in Korea last year amounted to about 2.7 trillion won, a difference of only 400 billion won from overseas.

Samyang Foods is the first Korean company to set up a ramen factory overseas. In 1972, it acquired a factory established by local Koreans in Brazil and operated it for three years, and in 1984, it invested $2 million to build a factory in Los Angeles (LA) with an annual production capacity of 3.3 million boxes and now sold it.

Nongshim Ramyun: This Korean food company built its first U.S. plant in 2005, beat Japan's Nissin in 2017 and ranked second in the local ramen market, followed by Japan's Toyosuisan (47.7%) with a market share of 25.2% in 2021.

Jjapaguri gained popularity due to the box office effect of the movie "Parasite," and "Shin Ramyun" drew attention when the restaurant closed in the aftermath of the pandemic. With this momentum, Nongshim opened its second plant in LA last year and is currently considering establishing a third plant.

Jin Ramen that caught the taste of the 10s and 20s...a roly poly

The reason why the ramen industry sees Ottogi as a threat is that the base of Ottogi ramen is deeply rooted in the entire 1020 generation. The distribution and food industries explain that "the advancement of the container ramen market reveals this well."

Container ramen is a product that people in their 10s and 20s often visit convenience stores because it is much easier to cook than bag ramen.

According to convenience store GS25 on the 18th, sales of Ottogi container ramen increased 40.5% year-on-year between January and March this year. This figure easily exceeds the average sales growth rate (28.1%) for all containers during the same period.

By age group, the proportion of consumers in their 10s and 20s who chose Ottogi Container Ramen was 37%, 5 percentage points higher than other products.

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