Headlines, June 5, 2020
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Headlines, June 5, 2020
  • Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2020.06.05 10:12
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Friday June 5, 2020

 

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

The Korea Post (http://www.koreapost.com/)
"Korean businesses are wanted in int'l production, industrial development, construction, more"
Among the areas where Korean companies are most wanted in the Russian Federation are international production, development of industrial capacity, construction and regional infrastruec projects. This was disclosed by Trade Representative at a recent interview with Alexander Masaltsev of the Russian Federation in Seoul. Exerpts from the interview follow:

The 102nd anniversary of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic
On May 28, 1918, the first parliamentary democracy in the Muslim world – the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic was founded with the adoption of the Declaration on Independence. The sovereign territory of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic was 114,000 square kilometers.
Despite facing grave internal and external challenges arising from the collapse of a Russian empire, the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic succeeded in setting effective state institutions, upholding the rights of its citizens, and gaining the trust of the international community. Universal suffrage right, as well as the right of voting of women, was guaranteed.

Special notice: The Korea Post is organizing a tour for the Ambassadors and Madams to the Pyeongkang Oriental Medicine Hospital on Tuesday June 9, 2010. Ambassadors and Madams are cordially invited to the Tour where an Oriental medicine pack against COVID-19 is presented to each Excellency. In the event of absence of Invitation, please advise the Editor at The Korea Post at 010-5201-1740.
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KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)
Thin Face Masks to Hit Market with Arrival of Summer
Starting on Friday, a local mask producer will begin selling face masks that make it easier for users to breathe in summer.
According to industry experts on Friday, Welkeeps will start selling the masks that still protect users from contact with respiratory droplets despite being thinner.
People can buy the masks on its online mall from 9 a.m. at the price of 500 won per mask.

Moon, King of Spain Discuss COVID-19 Cooperation
President Moon Jae-in and King Felipe VI of Spain held phone talks on Thursday to discuss cooperation in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Presidential spokesperson Kang Min-seok said that during the 45-minute conversation, President Moon called for unity and cooperation in the international community to prepare for the post-COVID-19 era.
In the meeting requested by the Spanish leader, President Moon also promised to share Seoul's experiences in battling the virus and to enhance its cooperation and alliance with the international community in the area of medical equipment.

S. Korea Reports 2.35% Mortality Rate from COVID-19
South Korea’s mortality rate from COVID-19 is two-point-35 percent as of 12 a.m. Thursday.
The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(KCDC) said out of 11-thousand-629 cases confirmed since the nation's first outbreak on February 19, 273 have died from the virus.
The country’s once-epicenter of the outbreak, Daegu, topped major cities and provinces with 188 deaths, or 68-point-nine percent of the death toll, while its neighboring North Gyeongsang Province trailed with 54 casualties. 
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Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)
Greater Seoul under threat of further spread, high alert over 'silent' virus spreaders
New virus cases in greater Seoul continued to rise Thursday amid a steady increase in cases linked to religious gatherings, putting health authorities on high alert over further spread in the densely populated metropolitan area amid concerns over asymptomatic "silent" virus spreaders.
The country added 39 more cases of the new coronavirus, including 33 local infections, raising the total caseload to 11,629, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

As temperature rises in S. Korea, worries grow over wearing face masks
The temperature in South Korea's southern inland area hit over 35 C Thursday, raising concerns over the wearing of face masks amid the new coronavirus pandemic.
A heat wave advisory went into effect in Daegu, 302 kilometers southeast of Seoul, as well as the nearby counties of Cheongdo, Gimcheon, Chilgok, Seongju, Goryeong and Gyeongsan, starting at 11 a.m.
Last year the first heat wave advisory issued in the region was on May 23.

Court begins process to sell assets of Japanese firm involved in wartime forced labor
A local court has decided to begin a legal procedure that could lead to liquidating seized assets of a Japanese firm that has ignored a ruling to compensate Korean victims of Japan's wartime forced labor.
According to the legal representatives for four Korean plaintiffs Wednesday, the Pohang branch of Daegu District Court, in southeastern Korea, decided Monday to take the legal procedure of "delivery of public notice," where a court ruling is considered to have been delivered to a defendant who fails to respond either purposely or with invalid address.
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The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
S. Korea to allow forex delivery, commercialize drone taxis
South Korea will allow consumers to receive foreign currencies via non-face-to-face delivery services, to induce competition among service providers and promote innovation, the nation’s fiscal chief said Thursday.
The government will also seek to commercialize urban air mobility services, such as drone taxis, to alleviate the ground traffic congestion and create a new growth engine for the economy.

US continues to urge S. Korea to show flexibility in defense cost talks: official
WASHINGTON -- The United States continues to urge South Korea to show "flexibility" in negotiations over sharing the cost of the American troop presence there, notwithstanding a recent agreement to have Seoul pay for Korean workers on US bases, a State Department official said Thursday.
The allies have for months tried to reach a new Special Measures Agreement stipulating how much South Korea will contribute to the cost of keeping 28,500 American troops stationed on the peninsula.

Court pushes for sale of Japanese firm’s assets to compensate wartime labor victims
A Korean court has kicked off the process of liquidating seized local assets of a Japanese company that committed World War II-era forced labor, as the Japanese government and the firm have ignored the ruling ordering it to compensate victims.
The Pohang branch of Daegu District Court decided Monday to give public notice of the court ruling made last year on seizing the Korean assets of Japanese steelmaker Nippon Steel, previously known as Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp.
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The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
Pandemic taking heavy toll on job market
Lee Tae-in, who completed an engineering degree from a university in February, recently decided to give up searching for a job in the first half of this year in South Korea's worst economy in more than two decades.
So far, he has applied for several midsized machinery manufacturers but failed.
"Job openings have stopped due to the coronavirus pandemic. Now, I'm afraid I can't find a job this year," sighed Lee, 26.
The situation in job markets is even less promising in the second quarter of this year, with many economists predicting the pandemic will deal a heavy blow to employment.

US continues to urge South Korea to show flexibility in defense cost talks: official
The United States continues to urge South Korea to show "flexibility" in negotiations over sharing the cost of the American troop presence there, notwithstanding a recent agreement to have Seoul pay for Korean workers on U.S. bases, a State Department official said Thursday.
The allies have for months tried to reach a new Special Measures Agreement stipulating how much South Korea will contribute to the cost of keeping 28,500 American troops stationed on the peninsula.

'Hope Tape': How a simple tape can help find missing children
Waiting on a package to arrive is always a delightful anticipation, savoring every moment of unboxing those deliveries. But in South Korea, there's another reason to take a better look at your long-awaited parcel before you rip it open.
There's something different about these boxes – wrapped with faces of missing children.
In time for Missing Children's Day on May 25, South Korean marketing company Cheil Worldwide got together with the Korean National Police Agency to initiate the "Hope Tape" campaign to help bring missing children  home.
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HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
Lee Jae-yong asks prosecutors to convene investigation review board
On June 2, Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong asked the Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office, which is investigating alleged illegality in Lee’s inheritance of control over the Samsung Group, to convene the investigation review board (chaired by former Supreme Court justice Yang Chang-su) under the auspices of the Supreme Prosecutor’s Office. That move would give the review board, which is composed of laypeople, a say in the prosecutors’ decision about whether or not to press charges against Lee. Lee has reportedly asked the board to render an opinion not only about whether or not he should be indicted but also about whether the investigation itself should continue.

S. Korea’s public debt to rise to 43.5% after 3rd supplementary budget
The South Korean government’s plan for a historically large 35.3 trillion-won (US$28.99 billion) third supplementary budget of the year on June 3 means that a large rise in the fiscal deficit and public debt ratio for 2020 is inevitable. If the National Assembly passes the budget plan in its current form, the operational fiscal balance -- a representation of the government’s finances -- will grow to 112.2 trillion won (US$92.17 billion), or around 5.8% of the predicted nominal gross domestic product (GDP) for the year. It’s the highest level ever, even exceeding the 4.6% recorded in 1998 in the immediate wake of the foreign exchange crisis. Public debt is predicted to reach 840.2 trillion won (US$690.12 billion), an increase of 21.2 trillion won (US$17.4 billion) from the second supplementary budget.

Blue House holds off on making decision on universal basic income
On June 3, the Blue House expressed a wait-and-see attitude about adopting universal basic income, stating that it’s “too soon” to talk about the idea for now.
“More debate is necessary about basic income which would mean the unconditional payment of living expenses to all citizens every month. There aren’t many examples of universal basic income being implemented,” a senior official at the Blue House told reporters on Wednesday.
Prior to that, Kim Chong-in, chair of the opposition United Future Party’s emergency committee, had raised the possibility of implementing universal basic income. “Formalistic liberty such as the idea that everyone is equal before the law is completely meaningless. We must make it possible or our citizens to enjoy material abundance,” Kim said.

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Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
Korean Businesses Were Ailing Even Before Coronavirus
Korean businesses were suffering even before the coronavirus epidemic. Revenue growth has been slowing from 9.9 percent in 2017 to one percent in 2019, and operating profit growth from 7.3 percent to 4.7 percent.
The Bank of Korea on Wednesday said that it analyzed the fiscal health of 25,874 companies subject to external audits and found that their revenues shrank, while operating margins fell to the four-percent range.
At the same time, debt-to-equity ratios and dependency on loans were rising. Companies subject to external audits have assets of more than W12 billion or over W7 billion if they employ more than 300 workers (US$1=W1,218).

Year's 1st Heat Alert Issued
This year's first heat alert was issued for Thursday, with the highest daytime temperature hovering above 33 degrees Celsius in some parts of the country.
The heat alert was issued for Daegu, Cheongdo, Gimcheon, Chilgok, Seongju, Goryeong, and Gyeongsan in North Gyeongsang Province, and Changnyeong in South Gyeongsang Province effective as of 11 a.m., according to the Korea Meteorological Administration.
The weather was forecast to be fine across the country, with daytime highs between 22 and 35 degrees, but temperatures will feel higher due to humidity in these regions.

Most Koreans Already Sign up for Coronavirus Relief Money
Almost 99 percent of all households in Korea have received up to W1 million in coronavirus relief money (US$1=W1,218).
According to the Ministry of the Interior and Safety, 98.9 percent of a total 21.47 million households had signed up for the payments as of Wednesday. In money terms, 95 percent of the W14.24 trillion in aid money had been handed out. 
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The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)
Esper on thin ice with White House over military mobilization for protest control
Discord is fueling inside the White House over President Donald Trump’s response to the anti-racism solidarity protests triggered by the death of George Floyd. With Secretary of Defense Mark Esper disagreeing with Trump’s hardline step to mobilize active duty troops to quell the protests, the White House is hinting at the possibility of sacking him in turn. With the cacophony within the military growing louder, James Mattis, the former secretary of defense, has weighed in with publicly criticizing President Trump, a highly unusual move.

Experts say inter-Korean pact is inapplicable to Seoul’s balloon leaflets
While Kim Yo Jong, the first deputy director of the Workers’ Party of North Korea, accused the dissemination of leaflets by a South Korean civic group of being an act of hostility and a breach of the September 19 inter-Korean military pact. The sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, however, failed to mention the specific clause of such breach.

Galaxy Unpacked 2020 to be held online on Aug. 5
It has been reported that Samsung Electronics will hold an event to unveil new Galaxy smartphones, including the Galaxy Note 20 and the Galaxy Fold 2, on August 5. Online live broadcasting seems to be the most promising option instead of inviting domestic and overseas media companies and those in the relevant industry due to COVID-19.

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The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Taking Advantage of 177 Seats, the Ruling Party Crosses the Line
The Democratic Party of Korea’s unrestrained flight is shaking the political circle in the early days of the twenty-first National Assembly. Internally, the ruling party is stressing teamwork and refusing to tolerate “other views,” while on the outside, it is leading the National Assembly based on its power of 177 seats. The party’s leadership argued that it was the “thoughts of the people,” but inside and outside the party, more and more people are voicing concern that the ruling party is neglecting democracy and the parliamentary system.

Recordings of Phone Conversations Prove Goyang Mayor Lee Made a Deal with Former Mayor ahead of Party Primaries
At the time of the local elections in 2018, Lee Jae-jun, the incumbent mayor of Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do allegedly signed a letter of undertaking with former Goyang Mayor Choi Sung concerning rights over personnel decisions and projects on condition that Choi supports Lee ahead of the primary to determine the Democratic Party of Korea candidate. Prosecutors, while investigating this allegation, recently obtained critical evidence that could prove the allegation.

Joining an Expanded G7: An Opportunity to Enhance International Status, But a Difficult Road to Find Balance Between the U.S. and China
On June 2, Cheong Wa Dae spoke on the invitation to join the G7 summit extended by the United States and said, “It is not a one-time visit as an observer at the G7, but an invitation to join a new international system that could be the G11 or G12, which will significantly contribute to a higher international status and to national interest.” Cheong Wa Dae interpreted the participation in an expanded G7 summit as an opportunity to strengthen the international status of South Korea in the post-COVID-19 era. This has drawn views that the nation is in need of a strategic response to the conflicts between the U.S. and China.
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Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
S. Korean prosecutors seek arrest warrant against Samsung heir
South Korean prosecutors have filed an arrest warrant for Jay Y. Lee, vice chairman of Samsung Electronics Co. and de-facto head of Samsung Group, over allegations for an accounting fraud and an illegitimate merger tied to the group’s suspected plan to tighten Lee’s grip over the country’s largest conglomerate.
The Seoul Central District Prosecutor’s Office on Thursday requested an arrest warrant on Lee, 52, as well as two former executives Choi Gee-sung, former vice chairman and head of future strategy office, and Kim Jong-joong, former president at the office.

S. Korea incurs $3 bn current-account deficit in April, largest since Jan 2011
South Korea incurred more than $3 billion deficit in its current account in April due to a rush of dividend payouts on top of the slump in exports that bruised its external balance to its worst since January 2011.
The country booked a deficit of $3.12 billion in April current-account balance, a sharp deterioration from a $5.96 billion surplus in March, according to the preliminary data from the Bank of Korea on Thursday. The deficit figure is the largest since January 2011. It is also the country’s first red in a year..

Seoul lifts barriers on retail FX and plans to launch air taxi in 2025
Koreans can have foreign currencies they exchanged electronically up to $2,000 delivered to the locations of their wishes soon and may be able to fly around the city on aerial vehicle within five years under a slew of deregulatory outlines.
Hong Nam-ki, deputy prime minister, announced immediate deregulatory actions and mediating role to draw consensus on sharing economy like ride- and room-sharing as well as remote healthcare that has been stalled due to conflict of interests.
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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
AustraliaBrisbaneTime
www.brisbanetimes.com.au syndication@fairfaxmedia.com.au
Sydney Morning Heraldwww.smh.com.au
Colombia Reports http://www.colombiareports.com
BogotaFreePlanet http://www.bogotafreeplanet.com,bfp@bogotafreeplanet.com
El Universal https://www.eluniversal.com.mx/english
Andes https://www.redaktionstest.net/andes-info-ec/
Ecuador Times https://www.ecuadortimes.net/
The Jordan Times https://www.jordantimes.com/
LSM.lv https://www.lsm.lv//
The Baltic Times http://www.baltictimes.com lithuania@baltictimes.com, estonia@baltictimes.com, editor@baltictimes.com
El Pais https://english.elpais.com/
Philippine Daily Inquirer https://www.inquirer.net/
Daily News Hungary https://dailynewshungary.com/
Budapest Times https://www.budapesttimes.hu/

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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.

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