Headlines, August 4, 2020
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Headlines, August 4, 2020
  • Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2020.08.04 11:19
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Tuesday August 4, 2020

 

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

The Korea Post (http://www.koreapost.com/)
Korea’s next President: 2 Lees from ruling camp to vie with 2 Kims, Yoon from the opposition
Who is going to be Korea’s next President? The term of office the incumbent President of Republic of Korea, Mr. Moon Jae-in, ends on May 9, 2022, but the Presidential elections will be held two months earlier on March 9 the same year. This means that the actual power the incumbent President can wield will practically end at the end of the year after next. The lame-duck symptoms will perhaps begin appearing long before then.

Azerbaijani people proudly, justifiably establish the Republic of Azerbaijan 102 years ago
The people of Azerbaijan are justifiably proud that this republic was created. This is a historic event, a historic event for our people and on a global scale. A democratic republic was established for the first time in the Muslim world. This in itself showed again how progressive and talented our people are.
In its brief existence of fewer than two years, the Republic of Azerbaijan managed to take a number of important steps in the process of nation-building and the development of statehood. The national flag and citizenship of Azerbaijan were approved, and the national army was created. Baku State University was established. More than 200 laws were adopted, including a law granting women the right to vote.

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KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)
Gov't, Ruling Party Set to Announce Massive Housing Supply Measures
The ruling Democratic Party(DP) and the government have agreed to significantly boost the supply of new homes in the Seoul metropolitan area in order to tame soaring real estate prices.
DP Floor Leader Kim Tae-nyeon, chief policymaker Cho Jeong-sik, Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki and Land, Infrastructure and Transport Minister Kim Hyun-mee met at the National Assembly on Tuesday morning to discuss the plan. The government will announce the measures later in the day.

More than 1,000 People Affected by Heavy Rains in Seoul, Central Regions
Torrential downpours in the Seoul metropolitan area and central part of South Korea have continued for four straight days leading to snowballing losses.
At least 12 people have died so far, while 14 remain missing as of 6 a.m., according to the Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasures Headquarters on Tuesday. The heavy rainfall has also left more than five-thousand-751 hectares of farmland inundated by flood waters.

S. Korea's Consumer Prices Rise for 1st Time in 3 Months
South Korea's inflation rate increased zero-point-three percent in July, rising for the first time in three months.
On the other hand, growth remained in the zero percent range, due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, which caused international oil prices to drop.
In addition, a slowed increase in food prices and the government's free education policy also caused consumer prices to remain low. 

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Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)
Heavy rain pummels central S. Korea; casualties reported in landslides
Heavy rain continued to pound South Korea's central regions and the greater Seoul area Monday, flooding houses and roads, and prompting authorities to close riverside and mountainous areas.
From 6 p.m. Saturday through 10 p.m. Monday, more than 397 millimeters of rain soaked Anseong in Gyeonggi Province, south of Seoul, while precipitation for Chungju in North Chungcheong Province and Cheorwon in Gangwon Province reached 400 mm and 296 mm, respectively, during the same period.

S. Korea set to unveil measures to supply more homes in greater Seoul area
South Korea is set to unveil measures to supply more homes in Seoul and its neighboring area, in the latest effort to stabilize housing prices, the country's chief economic policymaker said Tuesday.
The measures will include supplying state-run rental homes for people with no homes and young people, Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki said.

U.S. names new envoy for defense cost-sharing talks
The U.S. State Department has named a new envoy for defense cost-sharing negotiations with South Korea and other nations, a department spokesperson said Monday.
Donna Welton, who recently served as assistant chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Afghanistan, will succeed Jim DeHart, who was appointed last week as the U.S. coordinator for the Arctic region.
"As Mr. DeHart's successor, Ms. Welton will pick up where Jim left off in regards to the ROK Special Measures Agreement, the Japan Host Nation Support Agreement, and all other defense cooperation and burden sharing negotiations we conduct worldwide," the spokesperson told Yonhap News Agency, referring to South Korea by its official name, the Republic of Korea.

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HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
S. Korea to begin liquidating Nippon Steel assets on Aug. 4
The liquidation of the assets of Japanese companies that have failed to comply with a South Korean court order to compensate victims of forced labor during Japan’s colonial occupation is slated to begin on Aug. 4, prompting the Japanese government to clearly threaten retaliatory measures. If the Japanese government carries through on that threat, it’s likely to reinforce a vicious cycle of economic retribution for historical disputes.
“The Japanese government plans to take countervailing measures if the assets of Nippon Steel are liquidated. Various measures are being discussed,” the Yomiuri Shimbun, a Japanese newspaper, reported on Aug. 2.

US permits solid fuel for S. Korea’s space launches, increases range of ballistic missiles in Korea
Reports that the US is permitting the full-scale use of solid fuel in South Korean space launch vehicles and has indicated its “flexibility” on the matter of increasing the allowable range of ballistic missiles from 800km are raising questions about the objective behind its actions. Increasing the firing range in particular would give South Korea the capability of launching a direct strike against Beijing, placing it squarely in the middle of the increasingly escalating tensions between the US and China.

SK Telecom launches prepaid service for foreign residents
On Aug. 2, SK Telecom (SKT) launched Miri, a telecommunications service catering to foreigners who are accustomed to prepaid mobile services.
With this service, users can make a deposit ranging from 10,000 won (US$8.37) to 5 million won (US$4,187), which can then cover phone bills, phone payments on an installment plan, and service fees, as well as micropayments. Users can draw upon their deposit as long as it lasts and cancel at any time, at which point they are reimbursed for the balance.
“This is different from previous prepaid services because it covers not only the monthly phone bill but also a variety of mobile benefits,” an SKT spokesperson explained.

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Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
Banks Pay Zero Interest on Deposits for 1st Time
Interest rates on savings accounts have fallen below one percent for the first time in Korea's history. That means even parking W100 million in a bank account will yield less than W1 million a year (US$1=W1,196). Gone are the days when bank deposits served as a means to increase wealth. Now they have become merely safe deposit boxes.
But loan interest rates have also fallen to a record low, making real estate and stocks an even more appealing investment.
According to the Bank of Korea on Friday, the average interest rate on bank deposits stands at 0.88 percent, down 0.19 percentage point on-year. Some 67.1 percent of fixed deposits yield less than one percent after the BOK slashed the base rate to a record-low 0.5 percent since the coronavirus outbreak.

N.Korea Slams Seoul over Missile Guidelines
North Korea on Sunday slammed the South Korean government for "revealing confrontational attitudes" after the U.S. lifted restrictions on South Korea using solid fuel for space rockets.
The revision was announced on July 28.
North Korean propaganda outlet Meari said, "South Korea can now launch low-orbit reconnaissance satellites using solid fuel due to revised missile guidelines agreed with the U.S. They also say they will negotiate with the U.S. on lifting the limit on the range of ballistic missiles, which is currently set at 800 km."

Japan Warns Korea over Asset Seizure
Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga on Sunday warned that his government is "considering all options" if a Korean court order authorizing the seizure of Japanese assets here is carried out as scheduled on Tuesday.
The court order authorizes victims of wartime forced labor to sell off the assets of a Japanese firm that has refused to compensate them.
According to Kyodo News, the Japanese government is strongly considering punitive measures like tougher visa requirements, recalling its ambassador, additional tariffs on Korean exports and even banning money remittance to Korea.

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The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)
U.S.: Japan’s trade restrictions are security measures
It has been confirmed that the United States said that National security matters are not to be judged under the World Trade Organization dispute settlement system, speaking of the complaint the South Korean government filed with the WTO over Japan’s trade restrictions. These remarks will likely cause controversy as they could be interpreted in favor of Japan.
“Only Japan can judge for the Japanese people what is necessary to protect Japan’s national security interests,” Washington said in a Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) meeting on Wednesday in Geneva, Switzerland, according to the minutes uploaded on the WTO website on Monday. “This surge in litigation (related to national security measures) poses serious risks to the WTO, threatening to enmesh this Organization in national security matters it has wisely avoided for over 70 years.”

Hyundai Motor to remove shifter from its electric cars
Hyundai Motor will mount a shift lever on the steering column for its next-generation electric vehicle (EV) “NE” set to be released next year. The South Korean motor company plans to equip its internal combustion engine (ICE) cars with column shifters as well. A complete change in space design is expected once the gearbox that separates the driver’s seat from the passenger’s seat is removed.

A journal published on Japan’s forced mobilization of sex slaves
The Northeast Asian History Foundation published an academic journal backing up the circumstances where the Japanese military and the government systematically engaged in the forced mobilization of sex slaves and in the installment and management of brothels.
The history foundation announced Monday that it published two volumes on the materials over the issue of the comfort women by the Japanese army, a compilation of 70 original copies of public documents and their translation. The first volume deals with the documents on how Japan and its military mobilized and transported sex slaves, and the second one covers the stories about how the brothels were run and how the relevant crimes were punished after war.

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The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Not the Monsoon, Disastrous Floods Swallow Central Korea
The nation is suffering casualties and property damage due to the torrential rains that fell heavily particularly in the Seoul metropolitan area and central South Korea since August 1. According to the Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters on August 2, as of 7:30 p.m. this day, six people have died and eight are missing. Chungcheongbuk-do, hit by a record-breaking “water bomb,” suffered the most number of casualties: four people died and eight people including one fire fighter are missing. The Korea Meteorological Administration expects the Korean Peninsula to come under the influence of Typhoon Hagupit, the fourth typhoon this year, and forecasted torrential rains concentrated in the central region until after August 5.

Economy Recorded a Negative 3.3% Growth in the Second Quarter: The Best Performance among OECD Countries
The South Korean economy recorded negative growth in the second quarter this year, but the nation fared better compared to other countries. The government is also expecting a V-pattern rebound in the third quarter, as some recent economic indicators showed signs of recovery. However, some experts voiced concerns that it would be difficult for South Korea to enjoy “growth alone” amidst the spread of COVID-19.
According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) on August 2, the South Korean economy grew -3.3% in the second quarter, but this was the highest growth among the thirteen member countries that released the real gross domestic product (GDP). Even when non-member countries were included, South Korea placed second after China.

Ministry of Gender Equality and Family, “Seoul Did Not Take Any Measures to Protect Sexual Harassment Victim”
The Seoul metropolitan government has not taken any action to protect the victim of alleged sexual assault, even though over twenty days have passed since the death of the former mayor, Park Won-soon. Also, in the process of handling the sexual assault case, the city of Seoul may have caused secondary damage by leaking information.
On July 30, the Ministry of Gender Equality and Family announced that a government-wide inspection team to end sexual harassment and violence confirmed these details after a site inspection of the Seoul metropolitan government on July 28-29. 
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Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
Hyundai Heavy bags orders for up to 12 LNG carriers
Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering Co., the shipbuilding holding company of South Korea’s Hyundai Heavy Industries Group, will build up to 12 LNG carriers for European and Bermuda shipping firms in a deal that could be worth up to $2.28 billion.
The Korean shipbuilding giant said Monday it snagged orders for six 174,000-square-meter LNG carriers to be deployed in Royal Dutch Shell’s LNG project. Orders for four carriers have been finalized, with a contract for two more vessels to be signed later this month.

Seoul postures for fresh attack from Tokyo as court free to seize Nippon Steel assets
Seoul is readying various countermeasures against fresh retaliation from Tokyo as a Korean court is set to liquidate assets of incompliant Japanese companies to compensate Korean victims of wartime forced labor, the Korean foreign ministry said on Monday.
Effective from Tuesday, the Pohang branch of Daegu District Court will be able to act out its June order to seize shares that Nippon Steel Corp. has in a joint venture, PNR, with Korean steelmaker Posco and liquidate to pay damages to four Korean plaintiffs for their forced and underpaid labor at a steel mill during the World War II.

LG Chem flies to 52-week high as it leaps to peak in global EV battery market
LG Chem Ltd. shares touched a new 52-week high on Monday as they gained traction from the latest ranking placing the company at a comfortable lead in the global electric vehicle battery market
After opening at 583,000 won ($487.66) on Monday, LG Chem shares briefly hit a new 52-week high of 650,000 won. The stock finished the day at 635,000 won, up 11.8 percent from the previous session’s close. 
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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 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/

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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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