The Korean daily media headlines and humor
The Korean daily media headlines and humor
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  • 승인 2016.03.02 00:00
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Mar. 2, 2016

The Korean daily media headlines and humor

Wednesday, Mar. 2, 2016

Your Excellency:

Here are from one of the former ambassadors who served in Korea and The Korea Post news and roundup of important headlines from all major Korean-language dailies, TV and other news media of Korea this morning:

Lee Kyung-sik


Korea Post Media

P.S.: 1. To see the desired site, press down the Control key and click the blue URL of the media.

2. If received by a person other than the intended recipient, please kindly convey the mail to His/Her Excellency.


Humor from former Ambassadors in Korea:

The following humor was contributed by a kind-hearted and generous-minded former ambassador to Korea from a Central Asian country:

GOD asks Ramu: "Now that you are old, you have to choose either Parkinsons disease (haath kaapna) or Alzheimers (yaadaast khona) as punishment for your karma in this life."

Ramu goes to Shyamu who advises him to choose Parkinsons and says, "It’s better to spill half glass of whiskey than to forget where the bottles are kept."

Ramu hugs Shyamu

A quick roundup of major news stories from Korean media:


S. Korea: Delayed UNSC Meeting Due to ‘Technical Errors’

South Korea’s Foreign Ministry says the delay in ratifying the UN resolution criticizing North Korea for its fourth...

NHK: UN N. Korea Sanctions Changed Due to Russia

Main Opposition Party Votes to Officially End Filibuster

Opposition Party to End Record-Long Filibuster

Main Opposition Party Votes to Officially End Filibuster

S. Korea: Delayed UNSC Meeting Due to ‘Technical Errors’

Opposition Party to End Record-Long Filibuster

S. Korea's Exports Decrease 12.2% in February

Wage Gap Between Large and Small Firms Widens

S. Korea's Per Capita GDP Reaches 84% of Japan's

KCNA: Detained American Apologized for His Crimes

Gov't: N. Korea Slandering S. Korean President is Nat'l Shame

'N. Korea Will not Die However it is Sanctioned'

NHK: UN N. Korea Sanctions Changed Due to Russia

UNSC to Vote on N. Korea Sanctions Resolution Wednesday

US: No Connection Between THAAD and UN Sanctions on N. Korea


Yonhap (

Korea's current account surplus narrows in Jan. on service deficit

South Korea's current account surplus narrowed from a month earlier in January as the country suffered a slump in exports and its deficit in the service sector widened, central bank data showed Wednesday.

S. Korea's industrial output falls 1.9 pct in Jan. on weak exports

South Korea's industrial output fell for three months in a row in January due to a slump in the electronics and automaking sectors amid faltering outbound shipments, a government report showed Wednesday.

Hyundai, Kia see U.S. sales grow 6.4 pct in Feb.

Hyundai Motor Co. and its smaller affiliate, Kia Motors Corp., saw their combined sales in the United States rise 6.4 percent in February, thanks to a 13 percent jump in Kia's sales, industry data showed Tuesday.

N. Korea to boycott UN human rights forum

GENEVA, March 1 (Yonhap) -- North Korea said Tuesday that it will boycott the U.N. Human Rights Council session and will not be bound by any resolutions that singles out the country for censure.


The Korea Herald (

U.N. Security Council postpones vote on N.K. resolution

The U.N. Security Council postponed a vote on a new resolution expanding sanctions on North Korea until Wednesday as Rus...

NY dance company claims China pressure behind canceled show

Shen Yun Performing Arts, a New York-based Chinese dance company that was scheduled to perform ...

Korea's exports decline for 14th straight month

Pinched by weak overseas demand and low oil prices, South Korea’s exports plummeted 12.2 perce...

Samsung's TV reign faces challenges

South Korean tech giant Samsung Electronics has added a new chapter to the history of the globa...

Coupang to log record loss in 2015

South Korea’s top e-commerce operator Coupang is expected to have logged a record-high loss in 2015, acc...

After drawing the map

The long-awaited completion of the electoral remapping for the April 14 parliamentary poll l...

Russia factor

It is apparent that Russia wants to increase its leverage in its international dealings with...


The Korea Times (

Mercedes sold unregistered cars

Mercedes-Benz Korea, headed by CEO Dimitris Psillakis, may face a prosecution investigation for selling unregistered vehicles, according to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport Sunday. The ministry said it has susp...

Descendant of reporter on March 1 movement joins celebration 

Jennifer Linley Taylor, 57, from California, was one of 33 people who rang the bell at Bosingak in... 

SK heiress to serve at border unit 

An heiress of South Korea’s third-largest conglomerate SK Group is on a mission to protect the cou... 

Opposition to end filibuster after eight days 

The main opposition Minjoo Party of Korea (MPK) has decided to end its record-breaking filibuster ... 

Korea shifting to cashless society 

Cash is giving way to credit cards and fintech payments in Korea, slowly losing its significance a... 

FILA ready for new impact in sportswear market 

Fashion house FILA has finished the first renovation in the company’s 23-year history in Korea, se...

Most students say 'comfort women' accord wrong 

Korea’s middle and high school students think the most urgent problem between Korea and Japan is the “comfort women” issue, a survey showed Monday.


DongAIlbo (

Google's self-driving car collides with public bus in California

Google's self-driving vehicle caused an accident for the first time after its six years of test driving. Previously, it had some …

Pres. Park commits to pressure North Korea in presidential speech

President Park Geun-hye has confirmed her determination to continue the hard line policy against North Korea on Tuesday. “South Ko…

'Obama, Xi to meet in late March,' says Chinese PM

U.S. President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping plan to meet in Washington D.C. late this month. It will be the firs…

Man sneak-thieves after pretending to going to work

"I'm going to the office. See you."A man in his 40s and head of a household was fired from a sewing factory in October last year …

POSCO to build FINEX steel mill in Iran

POSCO Group will construct an integrated steel mill in Iran by using FINEX, its new steel-making technology. At the Korea-Iran Bus…

Incheon airport wins ASQ Awards for 11 consecutive years

Incheon International Airport has topped the annual Airport Service Quality surveys conducted by the Airports Council Internatio…


ChosunIlbo (

1 in 3 Mom-and-Pop Stores Shut Within 3 Years

One out of every three mom-and-pop stores like fried chicken restaurants, coffee shops and hole-in-the-wall pubs close down less than three years after they open, according to a study by the Seoul Metropolitan Government. >> Full Text

Wage Gap Between Big and Small Businesses Widens

The wage gap between big businesses and small and mid-sized companies and between regular and temporary workers has widened despite government promises to reform the labor market. >> Full Text

Smartphones Raise Accident Risk for Pedestrians

An increasing number of pedestrians fall victim to dangerous accidents because they are distracted by their smartphones. Their number nearly doubled over five years from 437 in 2009 to 1,111 in 2014, according to Hyundai Marine and Fire Insurance. >> Full Text

Spending on Private Crammers Hits New Record

Korea, China Mull Renewal of Currency Swap Deal


HankyorehShinmoon (

Opposition to end record-breaking eight-day filibuster

Even after failing to reach anti-terror bill compromise with the ruling party, opposition will open the way for election district finalization

The Minjoo Party of Korea (TMPK) decided on Mar. 1 to end a more than seven-day-long filibuster to stop the passage of anti-terror legislation. TMPK floor leader Lee Jong-kul delivered the news in a statement that morning.“On this meaningful date of Mar. 1 [Independence Movement Day], TMPK plans to end its filibuster on the so-called ‘anti-terror bill’,” Lee wrote, adding that the party “will be issuing a more detailed statement of gathering opinions at a general lawmakers’ meeting.”

Going to see “Spirits’ Homecoming” becoming much more than just a trip to the movies

The film “Spirit’s Return,” which tells the story of young girls who were dragged off to be comfort women for the Imperial Japanese Army, has become a hit at the box office, selling more than a million tickets within the first five days of its release. The “Spirit’s Return” phenomenon .

Watching your seconds” exposes McDonald’s workers to accident risk

Twenty seconds for hand-washing. Three to five seconds to heat the bread. Twenty-five seconds to put the bread in the packaging. Forty-five seconds to add ingredients and wrap. Seven minutes and 30 seconds to deliver the item to the delivery person. Ten minutes for delivery.

Study: South Korea’s social mobility ladder is broken

Low-income South Koreans are finding it harder and harder to rise to the middle or high-income classes through their own efforts and abilities, a recent study shows. Just two out of every ten households saw their economic status rise through increased income and assets over a three-year period, the findings indicate.


JoongAngIlbo(conservative): (

Park vows to denuclearize North

President Park Geun-hye vowed Tuesday to show North Korea that its nuclear arms program will not guarantee the regime’s survival, warning Pyongyang of newer and tougher sanctions. “Based on unyielding readiness and international cooperation, the government will make sure North Korea will have no choice but to give up…

Minjoo decides to wind down record filibuster

The leadership of the main opposition Minjoo Party of Korea has decided to end a week-long filibuster against a controversial counterterrorism bill,…

14-month fall in exports is the longest in history

Korea’s exports posted another double-digit decline in year-on-year growth in February, as demand shrivels with the slowdown…

Iofit collects data from ground up

BARCELONA, Spain - When you do squats at the gym, your trainer gives you verbal feedback to correct your movements…

Start-ups with gov’t backing go to MWC in Barcelona

Dozens of Korean start-ups showed off their technological prowess at the 2016 Mobile World Congress (MWC) held in Barcelona…

At the Pangyo cluster, challenges and potential

A start-up based in the Pangyo Techno Valley almost had to close up shop after most of its key employees were recruited by a bigger company.…

Business remains stable, Dandong traders say

DANDONG, China - Ahead of the United Nations Security Council’s vote to expand sanctions against North Korea…


The KyunghyangShinmoon(

Filibuster Becomes a 'School for Democracy,' Public Gallery Full over the Weekend

The citizens are raving about the filibuster carried out by opposition lawmakers to block a vote on the Terrorism Prevention Act, proposed by the chairman of th···

[Starting the Morning] How to Use a Lawmaker

The filibuster was fresh. To some, it was the cause of a quarrel, but to many it came as a "festival." The filibuster in South Korea was a news topic for the ···

[Editorial] Court Decides Search and Seizure of Kakao

Talk Was Illegal, Showing the Dangers of the Terrorism Prevention ActThe court ruled that a search and seizure of the conversations of some KakaoTalk users carried out by the prosecutors and the police without informing the relev···

U.S. and China Hold Hands on Korean Peninsula Issue: South Korea Is Missing

On February 24 (local time), the White House announced that the U.S. had reached an agreement with China on the United Nations (UN) Security Council resolution ···

[Filibuster against Bill Granting NIS Supreme Powers] Eun Soo-mi, 'The Anti-Terrorism Bill Will Put a Dog Collar on the Master, the People'

* Kim Kwang-jin, Moon Byeong-ho, Eun Soo-mi, Park Won-suk, You Seung-hee Make a Desperate Effort for Three Days * Ruling Party Takes Turns Waiting Overnight *···


The Korea Economic Daily (

Korea-Japan Per-capita Income Gap Narrowed to 84%

Korea is chasing Japan closely in terms of per-capita gross domestic products. Last year, Korea's per-person GDP shrank for the first time since the 2008 global financial crisis, but Japan's per-head income decreased more for three consecutive years. According to Hyundai Economic Research Institute ...

Savings Banks Finally Getting through Dark Times in 5 Years

The combined net profit of Korea's 79 savings banks has increased to 378.1 billion won during the second half of last year, more than doubling from the second half of 2014. This is thanks to smaller-sized savings banks getting out losses as well as larger ones. As for the ratio of sub-standard loans...

Chinese Central Bank Cuts Reserve Requirement to Stimulate Economy

The Chinese central bank cut its reserve requirement ratio again after four months. It was intended to respond to the slowing real economy and financial market volatility. The People's Bank of China said on February 29 that it would lower the reserve requirement ratio by 0.5 percentage point effecti...


Hyundai Motor Gears up for Future Vehicle R&D

Chung Eui-sun, vice chairman of Hyundai Motor, participated in the 2016 Geneva International Motor Show on March 1, unveiling a full lineup of eco-friendly model Ioniq. During the press conference, Chung said that Hyundai Motor's R&D on future vehicles was named "Project Ioniq," reflecting the symbo...


AJU Business Daily(

Detained US student confesses to stealing political slogan

Conservative activists burn an effigy of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un[Photo by Yoo Dae-kil ] A US student held in North Korea has confessed to stealing a propaganda slogan from his hotel, de…

New naval base built on South Korea's southern island

[Courtesy of Republic of Korea Armed Forces] South Korea on Friday celebrated the completion of a major naval base on the southern resort island of Jeju, showing off its bolstered naval power t…

Massive special loans for firms in Kaesong

South Korean government officials wait in an office to support firms in Kaesong.[Photo by Yoo Dae-gil] South Korea decided Thursday to extend 550 billion won (445 million US dollars) in special…

Amnesty stages holographic 'ghost' march in Seoul

Holographic Rally is displayed at Gwanghwamun, Seoul. [Courtesy of Amnesty International Korea] Human right group Amnesty International has staged a "ghost" rally using hologram images of pro…

South Korea warns of North Korea regime collapse

[Courtesy of Korean Air Force] ? South Korea warned of North Korea's regime collapse Wednesday after Pyongyang threatened to strike Seoul's presidential office and US



Dispute on RGBW 4K Quality Settles Down for Time Being

Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics and LG Display that had been arguing each other on UHD standards of RGBW Display have decided to improve current measuring met...

Vice-Chairman Kwon Oh-hyun to Overcome Difficult Times with Electronic...

Vice-Chairman Kwon Oh-hyun of Samsung Electronics emphasized that Samsung Electronics needs to strengthen its competitive edge in electronic and IT industries and creat...

Text Messages from Smartphones of Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics...

Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics¡? Smartphone text

Edge Displays to Be Used for Chinese Smartphones Also

Edge OLED Display, which is used for Samsung Display¡?s Smartphones, is going to be used for Chinese Smartphones. This is a result of diversifying its customers. China¡?s Vivo, Huawei, and Xiaomi ar


MaeilBusinessNewsKorea ( )

Reserve Bank of Australia buys S. Korean bonds in bulk

Long-term investor Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) is said to have bought South Korean bonds in bulk. Eyes are on whether the outflow of funds by foreign investors started through the sale by Franklin Templeton Investments around the middle of last month would ease off.

Samsung Electronics wins appeal in longstanding patent battle with Apple Inc.

Samsung Electronics Co., South Korea’s top smartphone maker, won a complete victory in court over its rival Apple Inc. on ...

KIKO case filed by Korean company Simmtech revives in U.S.

A legal battle to recover more than 3 trillion won ($2.41 billion) in losses caused by knock in-knock out (KIKO) currency ...

S. Korea’s finance minister intent on renewing Korea-U.S currency swap

South Korea plans to work on reviving the currency swap arrangement with the United States, said Deputy Prime Minister for ...

Korean food and coffeehouse chain stores in active M&A wave

South Korean coffeehouse and restaurant franchise chains have become one of the hottest menus for mergers and acquisitions among ...


The Korea Post is at your service.

The Korea Post is 31 years old this year and has 5 media units. They are all at your service.

The Korea Post, established 31 years ago in 1985, operates five news media outlets, two in the Korean language and three in English. They are all at your service. You can email all your English and Korean press releases and feedback for free publication to edt@koreapost.comor The five media outlets are:

(1) A Korean print newspaper (,

(2) A Korean Internet (,

(3) An English Internet (,

(4) An English print monthly (, and

(5) An English e-daily (/rankup_module/rankup_notice/notice_list.html)

Send your news releases and feedback:

Send the Embassy news releases to edt@koreapost.comfor publication by all its five media units, including one Korean ( and one English ( Internet dailies, which are updated real-time.(Call 010-5201-1740 for further details.)


The Korea Post news:

Diplomatic functions:

Ambassador Gerhard Sabathil of the European Union Delegation (16th from left) and Mayor Park Won-soon of the Seoul Metropolitan City (13th from left) pose with other EU ambassadors at a luncheon he hosted in Seoul yesterday.

First such meeting in four years

Amb.Sabathilof EU hosts informal luncheon for Mayor Park of Seoul, EU envoys

Ambassador Gerhard Sabathil of the European Union Delegation in Seoul hosted an informal luncheon in Seoul yesterday (Feb. 7, 2016) for the 22 ambassadors of the member countries or the EU as well as Mayor Park Won-sun of the Seoul Metropolitan City.

No details of the meeting were immediately available as it was an undisclosed meeting.

However, it was learned that the participating ambassadors of Europe and Mayor Park had a round of free discussions on a wide range of topics related with environment, culture and various other topics with an eye to increasing cooperation between the participating countries and the Seoul City.

This is the first such meeting since the last one hosted by the former EU ambassador in Seoul in 2012.

3D customized total replacement and stem cell treatment

YonseiSarang Hospital stands out in specialized treatment of joint patients

What part of the body is most frequently used in man’s every-day life?

Perhaps it comes in the order of neck, waist, shoulders and legs. Many people complain pain in the neck that comes from the fast-increasing use of smart phones. Then come the patients who complain pain in the neck that comes also from excessive use of smart phones.

Also on the fast increase are people suffering from obesity from lack of exercise who complain pain in the waist and knee joints. People who spend much time on computers also complain pain in the shoulders.

(The Korea Post is organizing a tour of for the ambassadors and madams to this Hospital on Friday March 4, 2106 where the diplomats are offered a free medical check-up. Please scroll down to the end of this article for a detailed itinerary. Please scroll down to the end for a detailed article and more photos on the Hospital?Ed.)

Dr. Koh Yong-gon, CEO and president of YonseiSarang Hospital

These working people are treated at the neurosurgery and orthopedic departments of the hospitals.

There are so many hospitals in Korea that treat patients suffering from joint and spine problems and naturally competition among them is very keen.

Among them is the YonseiSarang Hospital in Seoul. This hospital was established by the graduates of Yonsei University in Seoul, a most prestigious private university in Korea, and has been growing very fast in spite of the keen competition among hospitals. YonseiSarang specializes in the treatment of patients suffering from joint and spine problems. The Hospital is one of the largest in Korea that specialize in the treatment of patients suffering from joints and spine.

Established in 2003, the Hospital has a motto and slogan reading, “We provide the best treatment and give hopes to the patients!” Thus the Hospital tries to free the patients from the pains and worries of their spine and joint.

The YonseiSarang Hospital is well known not only among the Seoulites but also the people in the countryside. This is why a large number of patients visit the Hospital also from all parts of the country.

PresidentKoh Yong-gon (M.D.) of the Hospital makes it a rule to visit the patients in the countryside once or twice each month, who have undergone treatment at his hospital, to see how they are faring after their treatment at his hospital as well as providing the local people with medical consultation.

The Hospital has doctors specializing in the many different fields such as knees, shoulders, feet, spine and various other parts of the human body and this is why the Hospital is so widely known among the patients for fast recovery from their problems.

The YonseiSarang Hospital is located in the Gangnam District south of the Han River in Seoul, and has a staff of a total of over 300 persons, including 20 doctors.

Two main buildings of the YonseiSarang Hospital in Gangnam District in Seoul

The Hospital makes substantial investments in R&D, which makes distinction from otherhospitals covering spine and joints.

President Dr. Koh says: “We have developed a ‘3D customized total replacement system’ which has substantially improved the existing system--solving various problems in the existing system.” He said, “Furthermore, the YonseiSarang Hospital is known for the largest number of papers published overseas on the subject of ‘autologous adipose stem cell’ which is a system where cell is extracted from the patient’s buttocks, abdomen and thighs (where there is much fat) and injecting them into the knee joint.”

“Thus,” says Dr. Koh, “We have successfully differentiated ourselves from other hospitals in terms of superiority of the doctors’ competence and skills.”

Furthermore, the YonseiSarang Hospital has an International Medical Treatment Team making itself an internationalized hospital and public relations efforts are being made for a wider dissemination of this information.

Dr. Francesco Perdisa from Bologna University in Italy (fourth from right) poses with the doctors of the YonseiSarang Hospital at the time of his visit to the Hospital for a joint research on stem cell.

As a result of this development, an increasing number of patients are visiting from various countries of the world, including Russia, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, China and the United States. The Hospital is also preparing to establish in various countries of the world rehabilitationcenters and cell treatment centers for the treatment of the local patients.

At present, the Hospital has coordinators who speak fluent foreign languagessuch as Russian and Mongolian as well as English, which greatly helps in eliminating languages barriers faced at the time of treating patients of different nationalities.

CEO Dr. Koh (right) poses with Dr. Allan Mishra from Stanford University during a joint research

Also, doctors come to the Yonsei Hospital from various countries of the world, including Indonesia, Germany and Mongolia to learn the advanced medical skills from Yonsei. The YonseiSarang Hospital also concluded a medical cooperation agreement with various hospitals in Italy, Japan, China and Malaysia.

The YonseiSarang Hospital plans to establish for the first time among the joint-spine hospitals in Korea a Stem Cell Institute to free the knee-joint patients from their pain and anxiety and to help them have new hopes. At this hospital, cell is extracted from the fatty part of the human body such as buttocks and abdomen and injected into the joints of the patients, especially the senior citizens, who suffer much pain due to aged and over-taxed cartilage. The injected cells cause regeneration of the cartilage. Extensive studies and researches are being conducted at the Hospital in that area.

At present, the new method is being used for the patients suffering from knee bone problems but the range of its use is expected to be expanded to the shoulders, spine and other parts of the human body.

Aresearcher of Stem Cell Instituteis doing an experiment.

Another epochal development of treatment method is through the use of ‘tailor-made’ 3D man-made joint, which was developed for the first time in Korea. The artificial joint enhances the accuracy of operation as it is done after completely checking the state of the patient.

In contrast with the existing man-made joint where the ready-made joints are used, the newly developed 3D order-made joints are created through the use of a new method where the joint of the patient is ‘reconstructed’ based on MRI photography where the patient’s knee bone is reconstructed through 3D printing. This helps the creation of an artificial knee bone that is best fit to the patient.

The new method reduces the possible complication to the minimum compared with the existing method, and substantially reduces the operation time. The life span of the man-made joint, too, is more than 25 years compared with the 15 years of the existing ones. This is why the new artificial joints at the YoniseiSarangHospitalare very popular among the knee patients.

Patients from Russia, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan at the entrance of the YonseiSarang Hospital

Too, the YonseiSarang Hospital is equipped with special rehabilitation center facilities where the patients experience much shorter period of rehabilitation compared with other hospitals. This greatly helps the patients shorten the period of rehabilitation as well as the recovery period of the patents after operation. The patents greatly appreciate this and many of them have written letters of appreciation to the doctors who have treated them.

The RehabilitationCenterof the YonseiSarang Hospital is making preparations to enter Ulan Baatar, the capital city of Mongolia, in 2016 and this will be extended to Kazakhstan and Russia.

Mongolian staff members at the YonseiSarang Hospital booth at the 2015 Mongolian International Health Fair.

The Hospital has been selected by the Ministry of Health and Welfare as a Joint-specializing Hospital and a Globalized Hospital for Overseas Operations.

The Hospital has also won a Grand Prize in the field of joints for three consecutive years in the Medical Korea program organized by the Ministry of Health and Welfare from 2009 to 2011.

The YonseiSarang Hospital continues to make extended efforts to maintain the status of the most qualified hospital in the treatment of joints and spine.

Rehabilitation Center at the YonseiSarang Hospital

A doctors from Siloamal Int'l Hospital in Indonesia visited the YonseiSarang Hospital to discuss the possibility of a joint research with the YonseiSarang Hospital.

Invitation to the Ambassadors and Spouses to the Tour of YonseiSarang Hospital

CEO & Doctor Koh Yong-gon of YonseiSarang Hospital in Kangnam District south of the Hann river cordially invites

the Ambassadors and their Spouses to a tour of various facilities of his Hospital on Friday March 4, 2026. Itinerary follows:

10:00-1200 Hours: Arrive at Hospital, introduction between the host and guests, presentation of a memorable gift to each

Ambassador, video showing on Hospital, tour of hospital facilities, medical check-up for diplomats,

question and answer session and various other interesting programs for the ambassadors and madams.

10:10-1330 Hours: Luncheon hosted by the CEO-President for the ambassadors and madams

1330-1700 Hours:Tour of various facilities of the Hospital and medical consultations.

For questions on the Tour, please call Ms. Kim Jung-mi at 2298-1740/2, 010-3388-1682, or

Chairman Lee Kyung-sik at 010-5201-1740 (English)


At the Iranian National Day reception

Korean guests more than double the number at other functions

“We were informed that President Park Geun-hye has been planning her visit to Iran in the near future, which is going to be the first-ever such a state visit in the long record of relations between the two countries,” said Ambassador Hassan Taherian of Iran in Seoul at the National Day reception he hosted at Lotte Hotel in Seoul on Feb. 16, 2016. Then he said that the Presidential visit will surely open a new chapter in the bilateral relations and will provide ample opportunities for better understanding between two countries and have a positive impact on Iran-Korea cooperation as well (excerpts from the speech toward the end of this article).

The luncheon reception to celebrate the 37th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution was attended by an estimated 700 Korean and international guests as well as most of the ambassadors in Seoul, which, in the case of the Korean guests, was nearly double the number guests at previous such functions.

Why the sudden increase of interest in Iran in Korea?

Korea used to enjoy the so-called ‘Middle East Boom’ through the construction companies and trading firms and Iran was one of the prominent countries in the Middle East where the Korean companies actively took part in the economic development in the region.

The unusually large attendance of the Korean and international guests at the party is also partly due to the personal popularity of Ambassador Taherian who has a long and close connection with Korea. Also he is accredited to North Korea as Iranian ambassador and is in a good position to help improve the inter-Korean relations.

Attending the reception were many prominent Korean government and business leaders. Among them were Minister Chung Chin-youb of Health and Welfare, President Sung Nak-in of Seoul National University, Chairman Lee Hae-dong of the Busan Metropolitan Council, Directors-General Park Young-sik of the Ministry of Health & Welfare and Lee Sang-jin of the Ministry of Trade Industry & Energy, Director Kim Jae-jeong of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure & Transportation, and leaders of many leading Korean business companies (see list at the end of this article).

From the Seoul Diplomatic Corps came many ambassadors with their spouses (see list at the end of this article).

Excerpts from the speech of Ambassador Taherian of Iran:

I am honored to welcome you at the celebration of the National Day of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

We meet today to commemorate the 37th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution of Iran that falls on 11th of February.

37 years ago, the people of my country in a series of massive demonstrations and popular political movements under the wise leadership of Imam Khomeini overthrew the dictatorial regime of Pahlavi and elected and established the new system of the Islamic Republic which is based on modern Iranian-Islamic civilization and religious democracy.

Significantly this year, the anniversary of the victory of our Islamic Revolution has coincided with another victory for the Iranian nation and government in the international scene. This new achievement is the success of our government to manage and conclude one of the most complicated diplomatic crisisof this decade which was the Iran nuclear program dossier. Iran succeeded to reach a historical nuclear accord with six world power, turning the Iran nuclear program from an unnecessary crisis into a platform for cooperation. By putting some limitations on its nuclear activities and accepting the highest level of transparency and inspection on its nuclear program, Iran once again demonstrated clearly that never ever intended to build atomic bomb.

The negotiation settlement to the Iran nuclear program is a Victory for diplomacy and helped to remove the shadows of war and pseudo threats from our region. Most importantly, this settlement provides the opportunity for the region to focus its attention on current real and dangerous threat which is terrorism and violent extremism, which threatens everybody.

By the relocation of the economic sanction, the amount of interest in Iran has been unbelievable. We have hosted more than 50 foreign trade delegations to Iran during the last two or three months.

Located in the central part of Eurasia, Iran, blessed with rich civilization and culture, has long enjoying of geostrategic importance because of its central location in Eurasia and Western Asia and its proximity to the Strait of Hormoz. Iran with a diversified economy and broad industrial base, huge natural resource, young and educated population, large domestic market, access to the regional market and increasingly sophisticated infrastructure providing the foundation for an emerging economy which offers endless investment opportunities to local and international investors.

Iran and Korea established the diplomatic relations in 1962. Throughout these years, the two countries maintained a relatively friendly and strong relationship. The presence of the Tehran Street in Gangnam district of Seoul as well as the Seoul Street in North of Tehran, are the symbol and remainder of long friendship between the two countries.

We have had a number of official meetings recently, among them, the last year visit of the South Korean Minister of Foreign Affairs, as well as the Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport to Tehran. Fortunately, we were informed that Her Excellency, President Park, Geun-Hye, has been planning her visit to Iran in near future. This is going to be the first ever such a state visit in the long record of relations between the two countries. Surely, the upcoming presidential visit will open a new chapter in the bilateral relation and will provide ample opportunities for better understanding between officials and will have a positive impact on Iran-Korea cooperation, as well.

As far as the trade relation between the two countries is concerned, we always value and support particularly business relations between our two countries. Korean companies have a long record of involvement and successful activity in Iranian market and working in many infrastructure and construction projects in Iran. They enjoy a very good reputation as the reliable and confident partner and this is a valuable asset for their future activity in the Iranian market.

By the end of this month, on February 29, the Korea-Iran Joint Economic Commission is scheduled to be held in Tehran. Simultaneously and alongside with this Commission, there is going to be a Business Forum by the participation of huge number of businessmen from the private sector of both countries.

I believe the lifting of the sanctions, provides a plenty of opportunities for Korean firms to resume or increase their activities in the Iranian market. 

We welcome and will encourage the Korean companies to boost their business in Iran.

In closing, I would like to express my sincere appreciation to all of you for your attendance in our reception and hope you enjoy your time with us today.

Ambassador Hassan Taherian of Iran (third from left) cuts the celebration cake with Ambassador Hong Jong-Kyung of  Gyeongsangbuk-do Province for International Relations and Minister Chung Chin-youb of Health and Welfare (left and second from left),

Chairman Lee Hae-dong of Busan Metropolitan council, President & CEO Kim Jung-rae of Korea National Oil Corp. and CEO Jeon Sang-heon of Chungbuk Free Economic Zone Authority (four to sixth from left)

Ambassador Hassan Taherian of Iran and Minister Chung Chin-youb of Health and Welfare (seventh and eighth from right, respectively, at front row)

pose with the ambassadors at the reception.

From left: Ambassador DatoPaduka Haji ModhRosli Bin Haji Sabtu of Brunei Darussalam, Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of The Korea Post,

Ambassadors Rodolfo SolancoQuiros of Costa Rica, Vikram Kumar Doraiswami of IndiaandDatoRohanabintiRamli of Malaysia;

Chief Executive Counselor Choi Soon-hong of LS IS and AmbassadorSylvestreKouassi Bile of Cote d'Ivoire

Attractive figurines and other art objects on display at the reception venue

Mrs. MahManeshTaherian (spouse of the ambassador of Iran) and their son, Mahdi Taherian

Partial list of ambassadors attending the reception:

Ambassadors Mohammad SaleemSayeb of Afghanistan, Derragui Mohammed Elamine of Algeria, Albino Malungo of Angola, Elisabeth Bertagnoli of Austria, RamziTeymurov of Azerbaijan, Md. Zulfiqur Rahman of Bangladesh, NatalliaJhylevich of Belarus, Guadalupe Palomeque de Taboada of Bolivia, DatoPaduka Haji ModhRosli Bin Haji Sabtu of Brunei Darussalam , PetarAndonov of Bulgaria, Tito Saul PinillaPinilla of Colombia, Rodolfo SolancoQuiros of Costa Rica, SylvestreKouassi Bile of Cote d'Ivoire, GreciaFiodaliciaPichardo of Dominican Republic, Oscar Gustavo Herrera Gilbert of Ecuador, Milton Alcides Magana Herrera of El Salvador , Gerhard SABATHIL of Delegation of The Europan Union,  MattiHeimonen of Finland, Carlos Victor Boungou of Gabon, Rolf Mafael of Germany, NikolozApkhazava of Georgia, Gabor Csaba of Hungary, Vikram Kumar Doraiswami of India, Bessho Koro of Japan, Omar Al Nahar of Jordan, Mohammed Chraibi of Morocco, DatoRohanabintiRamli of Malaysia, Mohamed Salim Alharthy of Oman, ZahidNasrulah Khan of Pakistan, Irineo Raul SilveroSilvagni of Paraguay, Raul S. Hernandez of the Philippines, Krzysztof Majka of Poland, Calin Fabian of Romania, Alexander AndreevichTomonin of Russia, MamadouNdiaye of Senegal, Zoran Kazazovic of Serbia, Milan Lajciak of Slovak Republic, Nozuko Gloria Bam of South Africa, Gonzalo Ortiz Diaz-Tortosa of Spain, Niroshani Manisha Dias AbeywickremaGunasekera of Sri Lanka, JoergAloisReding of Switzerland, KiromovSalohiddin of Tajikistan (CDA), Mohamed Ali Nafti of Tunisia, HakanOkcal of Turkey, Andrea Veronica BaisGastaldi (CDA) of Uruguay, BotirjonAsadov of Uzbekistan, Ms. Yadira Hidalgo de Ortiz of Venezuela (CDA), Mumba Smyth Kapumpa of Zambia

Partial list of Korean guests attending the reception:

Chairman & CEO B.S. Park of Korea Registry of Shipping, President & CEO Kim Jung-rae of Korea National Oil Corp., General Manager Son Jin-seck of Daewoo Shipping & Marine Engineering, President SohnMyong-sei of Health Insurance Review & Assessment Service, Chairman Cho Hae-hyeong of Nara Holdings Corp., Head of Team Lim Tae-hoon of Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries, Vice President Heo, Sun-haeng of GS E&C, President & Chief Executive / Civil & Infra Lee, Sahng-ki of GS E&C / Seoul, President Kim, Kwang-min of Union Flow Control System Group, Director Kim, Jae jeong of Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transportation, CEO Jeon, Sang-heon of Chungbuk Free Economic Zone Authority, Chairman & CEO Shin, Jae Hyun of West Aisa Economic Forum, Vice President Kim, Young ho of KCC, President Lee, Young chan of Korea Health Industry Development Institute, President Sung, Nak-in of Seoul National University, CEO Park, No hwang of The Yonhap News Agency, Director Joon Lee of LOTTE Engineering & Construction, Director General Hwang, Hyeon-gyu of KHIDI, CEO Kim, Jae-sik of Hyundai Development Co., Director Lee Kap-soo of Korea Times, President Lee Jin-sook of MBC, Daejeon, President & CEO Kim, Jae-sik of Hyundai Development Company, President Choi, Du-youlof FTE(Fluid Thermal Engineering), Vice President Lee, Soo-yeon of DAELIM, Executive Vice President Yun, Won-sok of KOTRA, Director General Park, Young-sik of Ministry of Health & Welfare, Chairman Lee, Hae-dong of BUSAN METROPOLITAN COUNCIL, Director General Lee Sang-jin of Ministry of Trade Industry & Energy


Many countries lock horns to woo sanction-lifted country

Korea should try to show how she can do best for Iran

By Lee Kyung-sik

Publisher of The Korea Post

Following the lifting of sanctions against Iran, many countries of the world are seen locking horns with one another to be the first to enter the country for economic cooperation.

The first and obviously the most active country seems to be France who invited President Hassan Rouhani to visit France on Jan. 28, 2016. Korean-language media reports indicate that the leaders of Iran and France signed contracts totaling some 30 billion Euro (about 40 trillion Korean Won), including the purchase of 118 Airbuses.

According to an article by former President Joohum Lee of the Korea National Diplomatic Academy (KNDA) published by MaeilKyungje on Feb. 15, 2016, President Rouhani of Iran has also visited Italy, in advance of his French contacts, and singed contracts totaling some 16 billion Euro (22 trillion Korean Won). According to Lee, Iran has special relations with France and Italy.

In 1997, Italy invited former President Mohammed Khatami of Iran to visit Italy and has thenceforth been pursuing a pro-Iran policy.

France provided political asylum to the late former Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeiny of Iran in 1979, and has been maintaining close ties of friendship and cooperation between the two countries.

Approaching Iran for increased cooperation are not limited to France and Italy. Germany, the United States and China are also making extensive efforts to join the ‘Iran rush.’ Among the three stands out China. President Xi Jinping of China wants to rebuild a ‘New Silk Road’ to connect the Arab world and Europe through Iran.

As soon as the international sanction was lifted on Iran, President Xi visited Iran before any other head of state. Xi did not ask for money but traded automobiles, missile parts and textile goods for Iranian oil. The arrangement helped China make a big jump to the status of Iran’s biggest trade partner.

In contrast, the United Kingdom, who had monopolized the Iranian oil market until the 1950s, has become a target of total disregard. Reports say that the UK failed to change the negative image of its old ‘oil majors’ in the new surroundings.

So what should Korea do in this situation?

Former President Lee of KNDA suggests that Korea should try not to lose time. Korea should realize that she is neither a very close country to Iran nor one who is so far away. Korea should try to come up with attractive offers for Iran compared those of the competitors. For this purpose, Korea needs a systemized vision. Korea should come up with a concerted plan of cooperation with all the competent business companies to show Iran an attractive picture that other countries can’t.



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