President Yoon Suk Yeol vowed Wednesday to support South Korea's growth into a global startup hub by giving the private sector a greater say in how the startup environment should be run.
Yoon made the pledge while presiding over a Startup Korea Strategy Meeting involving some 110 officials from startups, venture firms, related associations and the government.
"We must build a world-class startup infrastructure and grow into a global startup hub," he said during the meeting at the former presidential compound of Cheong Wa Dae, noting the government is pushing a dual strategy of promoting exports and fostering startups in order to achieve economic growth.
"The government will provide active support so that our young people who are making attempts at innovation can freely launch businesses and step out into the global market," he said.
Yoon noted the need to boldly change the "startup ecosystem" from one that is government-led to one that is led by the private sector, saying the country should stop relying on domestic consumption or a quantitative increase in business founders helped by government subsidies.
He also suggested that the private sector should lead investment while the government contributes to private funds and expands tax benefits.
"In strategic areas, such as deep tech, the government will help by establishing a Startup Korea Fund worth 2 trillion won (US$1.5 billion) together with large businesses and the financial sector," he said.
Cheong Wa Dae in Seoul on Aug