Headlines, July 24, 2020
Headlines, July 24, 2020
  • Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2020.07.24 09:46
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Friday July 24, 2020


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

The Korea Post (http://www.koreapost.com/)
‘Korean New Deal will shift Seoul-centered national development to local areas’
Today’s gathering has been convened a bit early because the Cabinet members are scheduled to go to the National Assembly. The Korean New Deal initiative contains our determination to shift the metropolitan Seoul-centered axis of national development to local areas. In the short term, it will serve as a stepping stone for recovery in local economies and play a role in further promoting balanced national development in the mid to long term.

“Green New Deal is an initiative to leap from a carbon-dependent economy to a low-carbon one”
Whenever I visit Jeollabuk-do, I come to admire its beautiful and lush nature. Now, it’s all the more refreshing with a view of the wind farm off the province’s southwestern shore from a ship in the middle of the sea.
Following the presentation of the Korean New Deal Initiative – the declaration of the Republic of Korea’s great transition – I’ve taken the first relevant steps here in Buan and Gochang, Jeollabuk-do. Joined by Jeollabuk-do residents, I find it truly meaningful to have this opportunity to introduce our people to offshore wind energy – the key to green energy.  
KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)
Heavy Rains Leave 3 Dead, 1 Missing
Three people have died and one is missing after heavy rains pounded South Korea on Thursday.
The Ministry of Interior and Safety said that as of 6 a.m. Friday, three people died, four were injured and one remains missing across the nation.
As the heavy downpour of 80 millimeters per hour pelted the southern port city of Busan, a three-point-five meter underpass was flooded. Firefighters rescued nine people trapped in their vehicles, but three died and two others were injured.

US: N. Korea Must Return to Diplomatic Engagement
A senior U.S. official has repeated calls for North Korea to abide by U.N. Security Council resolutions and return to diplomatic engagement.
The U.S. State Department said on Thursday in a press release that Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs David Stilwell made the call during a video conference on Monday with senior officials from member states of the East Asia Summit(EAS).

US Tops 4 Million COVID-19 Cases
The number of COVID-19 cases in the United States surpassed four million on Thursday.
According to figures compiled by Johns Hopkins University, the number of confirmed cases in the U.S. topped the bleak milestone on Thursday afternoon, with fatalities surpassing 144-thousand.
The pace of the spread of the pandemic is increasing as the number of confirmed cases surpassed four million just 15 days after hitting three million. 
Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)
New virus cases hover around 60; local infections at almost 3-week high
South Korea's new daily virus cases stayed around 60 for the second straight day on Thursday as locally-transmitted cases spiked due to cluster infections traced to a military unit and nursing homes, with imported cases showing no sign of a letup.
The country identified 59 new cases, raising the total caseload to 13,938, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC). Of the newly added cases, 39 were local infections, the highest in 18 days.

Two killed in heavy rain in Busan
Two people died after being trapped inside a flooded underpass in this southern port city of Busan, firefighters said Friday.
As heavy rain pounded the city, the 3.5-meter-high underpass was flooded by 10:18 p.m. Thursday, with the water level reaching the 2.5-meter mark.
With vehicles trapped inside, firefighters rescued eight people and sent them to the hospital, but two of them, identified as a man apparently in his 60s and a woman in her 30s, died.

Rescue operations were also under way in other parts of the city.
BTS sets new Guinness record for most-watched online concert
K-pop superstars BTS' latest online concert has set a new Guinness world record for most viewers.
"BTS have achieved a new Guinness World Records title for most viewers for a music concert livestream," the Guinness World Records website said Thursday. "756,000 fans from over 100 countries tuned in to the online performance on June 14."
"Bang Bang Con: The Live" was streamed live for around 100 minutes remotely from a studio in Seoul last month. The septet canceled its world tour schedule for this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
S. Korea to raise tax rate on highest income bracket from 42% to 45%
The South Korean government is raising the tax rate on the highest bracket of income earners (above 1 billion won, or US$834,397, in annual income) by 3 percentage points, from 42% to 45%. As of 2023, investors will be charged between 20-25% of tax if they make more than 50 million won (US$41,720) from selling stock.
These and other changes appear in the revised 2020 tax code, which was given final approval by a tax review board at the Ministry of Economy and Finance on July 22. Presuming that the revised code, which seeks to revitalize the economy and help overcome the COVID-19 crisis, is passed by the National Assembly in December, its measures will take effect, in phases, starting next year.

S. Korea to tax profit from cryptocurrency transactions at 20%
Under the revised 2020 tax code announced by the South Korean government on July 22, investors in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies will have to pay a 20% tax on the margin of cryptocurrency transactions starting on Oct. 1, 2021.
“Income from cryptocurrency transactions needs to be taxed to ensure it is treated the same as income deriving from other sources, such as stocks and derivatives. Furthermore, those transactions are already being taxed by leading countries such as the US, Japan, and the UK,” the Ministry of Economy and Finance explained. Income from cryptocurrency transactions will be categorized as “other income” under the Income Tax Act.

Hong Kong democracy activist speaks during Korean mother of activist who died during Gwangju Democratization Movement
“Gwangju’s experience in 1980 has been a great source of strength to activists in Hong Kong. Just as South Korea achieved democracy, we too will continue fighting for a better future.”
Joshua Wong Chi-fung, a leading figure in the Hong Kong democratization movement, offered these comments in a video conversation on the afternoon of July 22 with Kim Gil-ja, the 80-year-old mother of Moon Jae-hak, who was killed during the events of the May 1980 Democratization Movement in Gwangju.
Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
Income Tax for Top Earners to Rise to 45%
The government will raise income tax for billionaires from 42 percent to 45 percent. The revised tax rate affects 16,000 Koreans who earn more than W1 billion a year and is expected to net state coffers an extra W900 billion a year (US$1=W1,198).
The latest measure is part of broader tax reforms aimed at boosting the country's economic growth as it reels from the coronavirus epidemic. It will be submitted to the National Assembly in September.
The new top rate is even higher than in some rich countries like Germany (42 percent) and the U.S. (37 percent).

Seoul City Staff 'Ignored Complaints of Mayor's Accuser'
The ex-secretary of late Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon said Wednesday that her complaints of sexual harassment by Park and repeated requests for a transfer fell on deaf ears over four years.
The accuser's statement was read to reporters by her lawyer Kim Jae-ryon in a follow-up press conference on Wednesday after she first came forward a week ago.
The woman "mentioned the sexual harassment to some 20 city officials including human resource staff, and showed inappropriate text messages and explicit photos by the mayor to a coworker," the lawyer said.

Jeju Air Abandons Eastar Jet Takeover
Jeju Air has abandoned a plan to buy rival budget carrier Eastar Jet after a deadline to clinch the deal expired.
Jeju Air on Thursday morning announced that it is canceling the deal which was initially signed in December last year before the coronavirus crisis hit.
The deal fell through because Eastar Jet failed to settle its outstanding lease payments and back wages of between W80-100 billion by midnight Wednesday (US$1=W1,198). Jeju Air warned last week that Eastar Jet's failure to abide by the debt-redemption agreement would justify canceling the deal.
The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)
LG Display kicks off OLED mass production in Guangzhou
LG Display has announced that its 8.5-generation OLED panel factory in Guangzhou has entered a mass production in earnest.
LG Display CEO Chung Ho-young and other executives attended a ceremony on Thursday to make it official that the plant has embarked on bulk production, according to the company. With an investment worth 5 trillion won, LG Display and Guangzhou’s development bureau built the factory, a manufacturing hub for the company’s large-sized OLEC panels including 48, 55, 65, and 75- inch screens.

‘The North Star Buddhist’ returns to Songgwang Temple from U.K.
A Buddhist painting from the Joseon Dynasty, which is believed to have been lost during the Korean War, has returned home. The Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism said Thursday that it repatriated “The North Star Buddhist” with the help of Overseas Korean Cultural Heritage Foundation and Songgwang Temple.

U.S.-Sino tensions rise following closure of Chinese Consulate in Houston
Over the latest closure of the Chinese Consulate in Houston, the U.S., President Donald Trump said it is always possible to close more Chinese missions. Despite the strong opposition from Beijing and worries from the international community, the U.S. president has fueled such concerns, hinting at the possibility of further cranking up the intensity of crackdowns against China.

The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Lee In-young, “We Need to Overcome Sanctions on North Korea with New Creative Ideas Like Bartering”
On July 21, Minister of Unification nominee Lee In-young (56) said he would promote an independent policy on North Korea involving humanitarian exchanges with the North. He said he would overcome sanctions on North Korea through “small trade,” bartering South Korean rice and drugs for North Korean water and liquor. His intention was to build the drive for improvements in inter-Korean relations by starting with the humanitarian field, which has little risk of violating the sanctions.

Another Five People Dead in Fire at a Logistics Center in Yongin. It Hasn’t Been That Long Since the Tragedy in Icheon
On July 21, a big fire broke out at the SLC Logistics Center in Yongin, Gyeonggi-do, killing five workers and injuring 8. This happened only 83 days after the fire at a construction site of a logistics center in Icheon, which resulted in 38 deaths on April 29. A similar accident occurred again in less than three months. It is devastating to see how much longer workers must helplessly suffer accidents that take their precious lives.

Investigation into the Alleged Sexual Assault by Park Won-soon Fails to Take a Single Step Forward
More than ten days have passed since the sexual assault allegations against the late Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon was released, yet the investigation into the case has not been able to advance a single step. The government-civilian joint investigation team that the Seoul metropolitan government said it would gather is on the brink of collapse from the initial stage, as women’s groups that are helping the victim repeatedly refused to take part due to concerns of the investigation’s fairness and objectivity. The warrant for the records of Park’s cell phone, which is key in identifying the truth, was recently denied. The questioning of key police officials has also been sluggish. 
Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
Korea’s GDP falls 3.3% on qtr, 2.9% on yr Q2, flagging deeper-than-expected recession
The South Korean economy sank deeper than expected in the second quarter, declining 3.3 percent from the previous quarter and also nearly 3 percent from a year ago, as the worst pandemic in modern times took a heavy toll on global and domestic demand.
The gross domestic product (GDP) contracted 3.3 percent on quarter in April-June period on the back of 1.3 percent fall in the first three months to put Asia’s fourth largest economy in a technical recession, preliminary data from the Bank of Korea showed Thursday. Against a year ago, it was down 2.9 percent.

SK Hynix ends H1 better than expected, keeps capex conservative on chip downcycle
SK Hynix Inc. will stay “conservative” in its expansion plans despite weathering the pandemic-battered first half better than expected as it sees prices of its mainstay memory chips to weaken in the second half.
Capex plans for this year are likely to be “more conservative than the earlier guidance,” with next year`s spending increase to also be limited, Cha Jin-seok, chief financial officer of SK Hynix, said in a conference call after its second-quarter earnings report on Thursday.

Hyundai Motor Q2 OP dn 31.7% on qtr, modest than market estimates, global peers
South Korea’s largest automaker Hyundai Motor Co. Thursday reported a 31.7 percent dip in its second-quarter operating profit from previous three months ago, although holding up better than its global peers due to recovery in domestic demand and factory activity.
Hyundai Motor in its regulatory filing on Thursday said its consolidated operating profit for the April-June period reached 590.3 billion won ($492.7 million), down 31.7 percent from a quarter ago and 52.3 percent from a year earlier.

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 Herald www.smh.com.au
Colombia Reports http://www.colombiareports.com
BogotaFree Planet 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/

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, 34 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=21239

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