Headlines, March 25, 2020
Headlines, March 25, 2020
  • Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2020.03.25 09:53
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Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Round-up of important news from major Korean dailies and from international media today

The Korea Post (http://www.koreapost.com/)

‘We should try to tide over the COVID crisis as we do in the lock-step race’
President Moon Jae-in said, “We should try to weather the current corona situation as we do in a lockstep race where we should try to keep pace with one another.” He made the statement on March 22, 2020 suggesting that the Korean people should try to work together to tide over the difficult situation developed by the spread of the COVID diseases. Excerpts from the statement of President Moon follow: This warm spring weather brings back memories of the organized trips and sports days that I experienced while in elementary school.

‘Korea seemingly has entered a stabilizing phase with the situation now coming under control’
Prime Minister Stefan Löfven of Sweden congratulated President Moon Jae-in over the phone on March 22, 2020 stating that he was very impressed by the Korean Government’s strong response against COVID-19, including the massive implementation of testing. Prime Minister Lofven then went on to say that Korea seemed to have entered a stabilizing phase, with the situation now coming under control. Excerpts from the announcement of the President Mansion of Cheong Wa Dae follow:

Pyunkang Korean medicine eliminates sars, mers, CORONAVIRUS OUTBREAKS
If there is Hippocrates in the West, there is Bian Que in the East. Bian Que (407-310 BC) became famous during the Warring States Period. However, his two brothers were also known as well as Bian Que. The king of the Yuan Dynasty once asked which of the three brothers was the most famous. Bian Que said he treats patients suffering from illness, but the older brother knows the serious illness that will soon come down on the patient and removes the cause before he gets sick. Though the patient did not even know that his older brother treated him, he was the most famous.


KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)

Dow Soars over 11% on Stimulus Hopes
U.S. stocks soared over eleven percent on Tuesday after U.S. lawmakers said they are close to a deal on an economic rescue package in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped eleven-point-37 percent to close at 20-thousand-704-point-91. Local reports said it was the biggest one-day percentage gain since 1933.

Moon, Saudi Leader Discuss Int'l Cooperation on COVID-19
President Moon Jae-in and the leader of Saudi Arabia spoke on the phone Tuesday and discussed international cooperation on the coronavirus pandemic. Presidential spokesperson Kang Min-seok said that President Moon and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman held phone talks for about 20 minutes, ahead of the special teleconference for the Group of 20 leaders on Thursday.

Trump Asks S. Korea to Provide Medical Equipment Support
U.S. President Donald Trump asked South Korea to provide medical equipment support to help fight the novel coronavirus. Presidential spokesperson Kang Min-seok said that Trump made the request during a 23-minute phone conversation with President Moon Jae-in on Tuesday night. Moon replied that his government would provide the "maximum support" if the country has spare.


Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)

Trump requests S. Korea's medical device support to fight COVID-19 in phone summit with Moon
U.S. President Donald Trump expressed hope Tuesday, in a phone conversation with President Moon Jae-in, that South Korea could provide medical equipment support, according to Cheong Wa Dae. Moon replied that his government would provide "maximum support" if available, as the two leaders discussed bilateral cooperation in the fight against the novel coronavirus pandemic.

New virus cases on downtrend, but imported infections accelerate
South Korea's new virus cases appeared to be steadily decreasing Tuesday, but imported infections saw their biggest one-day increase as the nation enforced quarantines on arrivals from Europe and other regions. The 76 new cases, which were detected Monday and were slightly up from the 64 new cases a day earlier, brought the nation's total infections to 9,037, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC). The death toll rose by 13 to 124 and 62 patients are in critical condition. One more person, in his early 50s, died later in the day.

S. Korea to loosen FX liquidity guidelines to boost dollar liquidity
South Korea will ease foreign exchange liquidity rules temporarily to prod local financial firms to provide more dollars in the currency market currently roiled by the market turbulence, the country's chief economic policymaker said Wednesday. Local financial institutions have been required to hold an adequate amount of foreign currency assets on hand to get over short-term liquidity disruptions.


The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)

76 new coronavirus cases reported in S. Korea, 3 in 10 ‘imported’
Nearly 3 in 10 new cases of the coronavirus reported in South Korea on Tuesday involved travelers arriving in Korea from abroad, as the government is tightening quarantine efforts to counter the growing number of imported infections. Korea reported 76 new coronavirus cases Tuesday, bringing total infections to 9,037, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The death toll stands at 124.

Moon vows W100tr rescue package to reinvigorate economy
President Moon Jae-in on Tuesday announced plans to double the size of aneconomic rescue package to 100 trillion won ($80 billion) to boost local businesses suffering due to the novel coronavirus outbreak. The announcement follows a second emergency economic council session this year. Officials handling the nation’s fiscal and monetary policies including Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki, Bank of Korea Gov.

Tokyo Olympics postponed over coronavirus pandemic
Olympic chiefs on Tuesday postponed the 2020 Tokyo Games until next year, a historic move to push back the world's biggest sporting event due to the coronavirus pandemic that is upending global society. The dramatic step is the first time the Olympics has been postponed in peacetime and comes as a devastating blow to the city of Tokyo and the Olympic movement.


The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)

Mr. President, undo your pay cut
I will only take "your heart" that comes with your kind offer. That would be my response to a 40 percent pay cut President Moon Jae-in made together with top government officials. Moon kindly offered the chunk of his salary to people suffering the effects of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic ― hundreds of thousands of small merchants and gig workers who have seen their incomes tumble and their jobs gone.

Korean economy on course toward recession
Korea is feared to slip into a recession as the fast-spreading COVID-19 outbreak becomes a global pandemic, in what economists say signals the clear end of a decade-long cyclical economic expansion that is set to pound Asia's fourth-largest economy. The much-dreaded recession, defined by at least two consecutive quarters of economic contraction, is increasingly becoming a reality after Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki acknowledged the likelihood of such in the first quarter of 2020.


HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)

Nearly 22% of S. Korea’s new cases on Monday were overseas arrivals
More than one-fifth of South Korea’s newly confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Mar. 23 were people who’d entered the country from Europe and other locations overseas, suggesting that stopping the coronavirus from arriving via other countries is a top priority for preventing a third wave of infections. Given the repeated occurrence of infections linked to people arriving from overseas, South Korea’s public health authorities are expected to soon announce tougher quarantine measures for people entering from the US.

S. Korean Foreign Ministry advises against all overseas travel for one month
On Mar. 23, South Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) announced a special one-month travel advisory, lasting until Apr. 23, recommending that all South Koreans postpone or cancel any trips abroad. The spread of COVID-19 is leading to the abrupt lockdown of borders and the closure of airports in countries around the world, obstructing the journey home for an increasing number of Korean nationals.

S. Korean conglomerates adjust investment plans and management strategy in face of coronavirus setbacks
Lee Boo-jin, CEO of Hotel Shilla and the oldest daughter of Samsung Lee family, referred to “survival” in remarks at a Mar. 19 regular general shareholders’ meeting. This means that Hotel Shilla has been no exemption to the financial setbacks that the travel, tourism, and hospitality industries have suffered amid the novel coronavirus outbreak. It was at a board meeting only a little over a month earlier on Feb. 21 that Lee cemented her commitment to expansion with a decision to invest over 230 billion won (US$183.85 billion) into construction of additional facilities to the traditional hotel, including duty-free shops, parking facilities, and office space.


Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)

Crammer Spending Hits Record Despite Dwindling Kids' Numbers
Spending on private crammers hit a fresh record last year, surpassing the W300,000 mark in per-capita monthly average for the first time since relevant data began in 2007 (US$1=W1,246). According to government data, per-capita spending on private education amounted to W321,000 a month in 2019, an increase of W30,000 from the previous year and the highest ever. Total spending soared by a record 7.9 percent or W1.5 trillion on-year to W21 trillion.

Shutdowns Spread to Korean Factories in India
Factory shutdowns due to the coronavirus pandemic have spread to India, where major Korean businesses like Samsung, LG and Hyundai have halted production of smartphones, home appliances and cars. India had reported a suspiciously low 415 cases of coronavirus and seven deaths by Monday, which would make it one of the world's least affected regions, but some Indian state governments have taken tough measures to prevent the spread of the virus and ordered factories to close until March 31.

Drive-Thru Becomes All the Rage
Drive-thru coronavirus test stations developed in Korea have been gaining global attention since the World Health Organization declared a pandemic crisis. The U.S. and some other countries have decided to adopt them, and here almost everything is becoming drive-thru to avoid human contact. The idea came from McDonalds decades ago but is suddenly enjoying a vogue. Chang Eung-jung (35) owns a Korean barbecue restaurant in Daegu, the hotbed of coronavirus infection.


The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)

Trump signals possible easing of social distancing guidelines
U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday that he was considering easing social distancing, a measure that was introduced to contain the spread of COVID-19, and it has sparked debates over when and how it should be done. It appears that President Trump is determined to scale back the restrictions in place in an attempt to revive economic activity, despite warnings of health experts that the virus outbreak could spiral out of control causing many deaths.

Gov’t announces 100-trillion-won economic relief package
The South Korean government will inject 100 trillion won in economic relief package, where 48.5 trillion won will be put into the financial markets and 51.6 trillion won will be funneled into small businesses, to ease the credit crunch triggered by the novel coronavirus called COVID-19. It plans to inject cash into large businesses as well to prevent them from going bankrupt due to a temporary liquidity squeeze.

Samsung secures masks on the strength of its global network
In an attempt to ease shortages of masks, Samsung Group has embarked on its mission to secure masks, mobilizing its global network of offices. The masks secured by Samsung employees across the world have been donated to Daegu and North Gyeongsang Province. The South Korean company is also helping local mask manufacturers to increase their production. Samsung announced on Tuesday that it delivered about 284,000 masks it secured through its overseas offices and 50,000 its buyer donated.


The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)

Public Spaces Struggle to Keep a “Social Distance”
On the afternoon of March 23, the second day of the government’s “fierce” social distancing, a gym in Seongdong-gu, Seoul opened its doors. It was a large gym where over ten professional trainers work full time. The manager of the gym said, “We operate five gyms in Seoul, and all of them are open,” but added, “We have stopped all group exercise programs, such as aerobics and yoga.” At the entrance to the gym, there was a logbook where they recorded the names, phone numbers, and overseas travel records of all the people who entered the gym.

“Severe Punishment for Perpetrators in Room N. Form a Special Investigation Team and Investigate All Subscribers”
On March 23, President Moon Jae-in spoke about the so-called “Telegram Room N” case, in which the perpetrators shot illegal videos of sexual exploitation by threatening victims including minors and distributed them on Telegram. The president instructed the police “to gather a special investigation team and look into all members of Room N.”


Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)

WellBiotec to market SolGen’s COVID-19 kit at home and abroad
WellBiotec, a South Korean leather product producer, said on Tuesday, it has a distribution contract with SolGent to sell the latter’s coronavirus sampling kit in Korea and overseas. The Kospi-listed company said it already settled $2.4 million for the initial batch of DiaPlexQ™ Novel Coronavirus Detection Kit from the diagnostic kit developer and plans to increase its distribution volume in the future.

Seoul to keep expansionary fiscal policy next year to back recovery from virus
South Korean government will keep up expansionary fiscal policy next year despite yawning fiscal deficit to revitalize economy recovering from broad damages from the coronavirus outbreak. Under the guideline for 2021 budget, the finance ministry argued fiscal role must stay “active” as the economic fundamentals have been hard hit by the virus impact.

Daewoong Pharm sells treasury stocks to boost R&D pipeline
Daewoong Pharmaceutical said on Monday it has sold treasury stocks worth 30 billion won ($24 million) to finance M&As and development of promising drugs. The treasury stocks sold to its holding company Daewoong Co. account for 3.9 percent in Daewoong Pharm’s outstanding shares. Daewoong Co. made the payment using a cash dividend from unlisted Daewoong Bio that reported its best business performance last year.


What’s ticking around the world at this second?
See what the world media around the world have to report:

USA Today www.usatoday.com aallman@gannett.com
The New York Times www.nytimes.com inytletters@nytimes.com
Wall Street Journal www.wsj.com support@wsj.com, service@wsj-asia.com
Financial Times www.ft.com ean@ft.com
The Times www.thetimes.co.uk help@timesplus.co.uk
The Sun www.thesun.co.uk talkback@the-sun.co.uk
Chinese People's Daily www.people.com.cn kf@people.cn
China Daily www.chinadaily.com.cn circulation@chinadaily.com.cn
GwangmyeongDaily www.gmw.cn webmaster@gmw.cn
Japan's Yomiuri www.yomiuri.co.jp japannews@yomiuri.com
Asahi www.asahi.com customer-support@asahi.com
Mainichi www.mainichi.jp
Le Monde www.ilemonde.com
Italy LaRepubblica www.quotidiano.repubblica.it vittorio.zucconi@gmail.com
Germany Frankfurter AllgemeineZeitung www.faz.net anzeigen.ausland@faz.de
SüddeutscheZeitung www.sueddeutsche.de forum@sueddeutsche.de
Australia Brisbane Times www.brisbanetimes.com.au syndication@fairfaxmedia.com.au
Sydney Morning Herald www.smh.com.au
Colombia Reports http://colombiareports.com
Bogota Free Planet http://bogotafreeplanet.combfp@bogotafreeplanet.com
El Universal http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/english
Andes http://www.andes.info.ec/en
Ecuador Times http://www.ecuadortimes.net
The Jordan Times https://www.jordantimes.com
LSM.lv http://www.lsm.lv/en
The Baltic Times http://www.baltictimes.com, lithuania@baltictimes.com,
estonia@baltictimes.com, editor@baltictimes.com

El Pais http://elpais.com/elpais/inenglish.html
Philippine Daily Inquirer https://www.inquirer.net
Daily News Hungary http://dailynewshungary.com
Budapest Times http://budapesttimes.hu
The Korea Post is running video clips from the different embassies.
Azerbaijan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OR8CBpcQ4WM
Sri Lanka: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hByX92Y2aGY&t=22s
Morocco: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfFmp2sVvSE
And many other countries.
What are you waiting for?
Use us!
The Korea Post media are more than eager to be used, and to serve you—with the following five news outlets, 35 years old this year!

Korean-language Internet edition: http://www.koreapost.co.kr
English-language Internet edition: http://www.koreapost.com
Korean-language print newspaper:

English E-daily: http://www.koreapost.com/news/articleView.html?idxno=20507

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