Headlines, November 25, 2020
Headlines, November 25, 2020
  • Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2020.11.25 11:34
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Wednesday, November 25, 2020

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

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

“I am grateful to the two peoples for cooperation, great success in our National Socio-Economic Development Plan”
President Moon Jae-in said, “I am so grateful to His Excellency Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (LPDR) for his special interest in my country and people, including his visit to Korea many times and third time even to his Busan City.” President Moon made the remarks at his summit meeting with Prime Minister Sisoulith in Busan on Nov. 26 last year.
These traditional friendly feelings shared by the leaders and peoples of the two countries were fully exemplified by Ambassador Theing Boupha of the LPDR in Seoul at a recent interview with The Korea Post media, publisher of 3 English and 2 Korean news publications since 1985.
December this year is a special month for Korea and Laos—the latter celebrating the 45th anniversary of Proclamation of the Lao PDR and the two friendly countries marking the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations established between them.

“We are committed to advancing ‘digital agriculture’ to give benefit to our farmers”
Hur Tae-woong, administrator of Rural Development Administration, says that RDA will remain committed to development of “digital agriculture” for sustainable growth of Korea’s farming industry. In an interview with Kim Hyung-dae, feature editor of the Korea Post, he said RDA plans to foster up to 5,500 elite young farmers by 2022. Plans call for offering support education for conflict management and creation of business models for start-ups. Administrator Hur also emphasized the need to strengthen cooperative ties with foreign countries in the field of agriculture. Following is a summary of the interview:
Currently, Korea’s agriculture and rural communities are experiencing more difficult times than ever due to a slew of problems, including coronavirus19 outbreak, climate change, slippage in farm households, aging of rural population, livestock diseases, and plant epidemics such as peroxide disease. Innovative agricultural research and technology development are badly needed to address this challenging agricultural environment and develop our agriculture.

Hyundai Motor, INEOS of Britain join hands to spread hydrogen ecosystem
Hyundai Motor has decided to seek close cooperation with INEOS Group, a British global chemical company, to spread the global hydrogen ecosystem.
“Our goal is to speed up the realization of hydrogen society by establishing an integrated hydrogen value chain that includes hydrogen production, supply and storage, development of hydrogen electric vehicles, and utilization of fuel cell systems, and by expanding hydrogen-related public and private sector businesses,” Hyundai Motor said.
Hyundai Motor signed a memorandum of understanding on Nov. 20 with INEOS with attendance of Albert Biermann, CEO of Hyundai Motor's R&D division, Kim Se-hoon, executive director of Hyundai Motor's fuel cell business division, and Peter Williams, chief technology officer(CTO) of INEOS.
KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)
Biden Vows to Strengthen Alliances in Asia-Pacific
U.S. President-elect Joe Biden has reportedly vowed to strengthen the U.S.' alliances in the Asia-Pacific region, saying that "America is strongest when it works with its allies."
According to Reuters and other foreign media, Biden made the remarks on Tuesday as he introduced his planned national security team at a press conference in Delaware, with his six nominees present.
Biden said that the nominees will not only repair, but also reimagine American foreign policy and national security for the next generation, adding his team is ready to lead the world.

S. Korea Reports 382 New COVID-19 Cases
South Korea reported 382 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, a day after the nation started enforcing Level Two social distancing regulations for the greater Seoul area.
The Korean Disease Control and Prevention Agency(KDCA) said Wednesday that the new cases raised the country's accumulated caseload to 31-thousand-735.
Of the new cases detected throughout Tuesday, 363 were local transmissions, while 19 were imported.

US Lowers Travel Advisory for S. Korea to Second Lowest Level
The United States has lowered its travel warning for South Korea by a notch to Level Two on its four-tiered system, which advises its citizens to exercise "increased caution."
The U.S. State Department on Tuesday announced the revised advisory on its homepage, saying it was lowered by one notch as of Monday.
As for the reasons, the department said that South Korea has resumed most transportation options, including airport operations, and business operations including day cares and schools. It added that other improved conditions have been reported.
Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)
New virus cases near 400, stricter nationwide antivirus curbs in offing
The number of new coronavirus cases in South Korea reached nearly 400 on Wednesday on account of sporadic cluster infections across the country, prompting health authorities to consider imposing tougher antivirus curbs nationwide.
The country added 382 more COVID-19 cases, including 363 local infections, raising the total caseload to 31,745, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA).
The daily caseload has stayed in the triple digits since Nov. 8, with the figure over 300 from Wednesday to Sunday before dropping to 271 on Monday due to less testing on the weekend. However, it bounced back to 349 cases Tuesday.

Labor group sticks to Wednesday's general strike despite rising virus fears
A leading umbrella labor organization said Tuesday it will push ahead with its plan to stage a one-day general strike this week despite authorities' repeated warnings about its negative impact on the nation's campaign to stem the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
The militant Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU) said its member unions plan to conduct the one-day walkout nationwide Wednesday, as scheduled, to protest the Moon Jae-in government's labor reform policies.
The renewed strike call came as the elevation of the government's anti-COVID-19 social distancing measures to the third highest in a five-tier scheme took effect in the greater Seoul area earlier Tuesday. The measures restrict gatherings of people.

Cafes, movie theaters adjust to new social distancing rules
South Koreans in the greater capital area were forced to adjust to toughened social distancing rules Tuesday as cafes banned indoor seating and moviegoers were told to eat popcorn outside theaters.
The new Level 2 guidelines took effect at the start of the day after the government raised the scheme to stem the recent surge of the coronavirus.
Most notably, cafes were ordered to offer takeout and delivery only, while restaurants were told to do the same after 9 p.m.
The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
New virus cases near 400, stricter nationwide antivirus curbs in offing
The number of new coronavirus cases in South Korea reached nearly 400 on Wednesday on account of sporadic cluster infections across the country, prompting health authorities to consider imposing tougher antivirus curbs nationwide.
The country added 382 more COVID-19 cases, including 363 local infections, raising the total caseload to 31,745, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA).
The daily caseload has stayed in the triple digits since Nov. 8, with the figure over 300 from Wednesday to Sunday before dropping to 271 on Monday due to less testing on the weekend.

PM urges labor union to cancel nationwide strike amid rising virus concerns
The prime minister on Wednesday urged a major labor union to immediately cancel its plan to stage a large-scale strike, amid fears that walkouts could potentially exacerbate the COVID-19 situation ahead of next month's nationwide college entrance exam.
The Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU), the country's largest umbrella trade union, will hold a nationwide one-day walkout later in the day to oppose the government's plan to revise the law to ratify key International Labor Organization conventions.
"While KCTU has said it will follow disease control guidelines, it is very concerning given the developments of the COVID-19 situation as of late," Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun said during a meeting of the Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters at the government complex in Seoul.

Chinese FM Wang to arrive in S. Korea as Biden envisions stronger alliances
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi is set to arrive in Seoul on Wednesday for talks with Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha and others, as US President-elect Joe Biden envisions solidifying America's democratic alliances to reassert its global leadership.
After his two-day trip to Japan, Wang is scheduled to fly in amid expectations that he could use the trip to try to bring South Korea closer to its side as a strategic rivalry between Washington and Beijing is expected to continue under the Biden administration.
Wang's trip has taken on geopolitical overtones, as Biden has vowed to rally America's allies and other partners for a global "Summit for Democracy" to shore up multilateralism and confront international challenges, possibly including China's growing assertiveness.

The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
Korean Buddhism: Untold hallyu teetering
Even before the term hallyu was coined in the early 2000s to refer to the successive sensational success of Korean dramas in Japan following KBS's mega hit TV series "Winter Sonata," there was the export of Korean ideas and thoughts. Korean Buddhism is the untold side of hallyu.
Korea's export of Zen Buddhism had preceded the overseas sensational reactions to Korean dramas and K-pop which seems to have reached its peak with the presence of superstar K-pop band BTS since the mid-2010s.
Starting in the late 1980s, Korean Buddhism captivated Americans and Europeans who sought to find peace of mind and reach the mental state of complete detachment from worldly desires. In the 1990s, a flurry of Westerners visited Korea to study Buddhism and about 100 people chose to become Buddhist monastics, dedicating their rest of their lives to preaching and spreading Buddha's teachings.

Major law firms hit jackpot with KAL-Asiana deal
Korean Air owner Hanjin Group's plan to take over Asiana Airlines with financial support from the Korea Development Bank (KDB) has created a stir nationwide since its announcement. But the move is certainly regarded as good news by one of the major beneficiaries of the proposed deal ― law firms.
In addition to getting paid by both buyer and seller for offering legal advice on the acquisition, they are expected to make huge amounts of money from follow-up litigation filed in the aftermath of the high-profile aviation deal.
The most significant could be legal action taken by the Korea Corporate Governance Improvement (KCGI) against Hanjin and the KDB. The local activist fund holding a major stake in the group's holding company, Hanjin KAL, has collaborated with two other major shareholders ― former Korean Air Vice President Cho Hyun-ah and Bando Group ― to block Hanjin Chairman Cho Won-tae from taking over control of the group. The coalition has argued the Asiana acquisition is aimed at defending the managerial rights of the chairman.

New virus cases near 400, stricter nationwide antivirus curbs in offing
The number of new coronavirus cases in South Korea reached nearly 400 on Wednesday on account of sporadic cluster infections across the country, prompting health authorities to consider imposing tougher antivirus curbs nationwide.
The country added 382 more COVID-19 cases, including 363 local infections, raising the total caseload to 31,745, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA).
The daily caseload has stayed in the triple digits since Nov. 8, with the figure over 300 from Wednesday to Sunday before dropping to 271 on Monday due to less testing on the weekend. However, it bounced back to 349 cases Tuesday.

HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
Greater Seoul sees increasing number of COVID-19 cases among young people
With the social distancing regime increased to Level 2 across the Seoul Capital Area (SCA) as of Nov. 24, disease control authorities called on residents to refrain from year-end gatherings and other forms of in-person interaction. The city of Seoul, where the number of new COVID-19 cases has topped 100 for several days running, is taking the preemptive step of closing daycare centers and reducing late-night operation of public transportation.
“Just as a dam that is starting to burst will come crashing down all at once, there is a risk of the number of infections increasing exponentially if the spread cannot be contained to a certain scale,” Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) Director Jung Eun-kyeong said in a regular briefing on Nov. 23.
“Because this is a situation that carries a severe risk of community transmission, we strongly request that [people] cancel any end-of-year events or conduct them without in-person or contact,” she added. The number of new cases that day stood at 271 as of midnight. While the number was down slightly from over 300 cases for five straight days until the day before, the reduced amount of testing over the weekend is a factor that should be taken into account.

KOSPI sets new record as purchases from foreign investors surge
The KOSPI index has set a new record as it passes the 2,600-point mark on an upward slope of purchases from foreign investors.
On Nov. 23, the KOSPI closed trading at 2,602.59 points, up by 49.09 (1.92%) from the day before.
Purchases from foreign investors propelled the index to its new all-time high. Foreign buyers made net purchases of 988.5 billion won (US$890.8 million) on the securities market. The trend has been one of net purchasing for 13 straight days since Nov. 5 (1.14 trillion won, or US$1.03 billion). Net sales of 873.8 billion won (US$787.37 million) and 59.4 billion won (US$53.52 million) were registered for individual and institutional investors, respectively.

S. Korean unification minister hopes to set up reciprocal missions in Seoul and Pyongyang
South Korean Unification Minister Lee In-young said on Nov. 23 that Seoul hopes to set up liaison offices and trade missions in the North Korean cities of Kaesong, Sinuiju, and Rason(Rajin-Sonbong), along with reciprocal missions in Seoul and Pyongyang.
“Rather than letting the demolished [Kaesong inter-Korean joint] liaison office go down as [another incident in] a history of hostility, we should rebuild it to bring in an even greater peace,” Lee said in the opening address to a debate in the National Assembly on Monday about productive ways to reopen inter-Korean organizations for communication and deliberation.
“A new period of change in inter-Korean relations will begin with resuming communication at the inter-Korean joint liaison office,” Lee said.
Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
Epidemic Puts Heavy Burden on Full-Time Housewives
The coronavirus epidemic has increased the childcare burden on full-time housewives as schools and crammers closed.
This trend is chronicled in a report by Eun Ki-soo from Seoul National University in the November issue of "Labor Review." It cites a poll from June and July that showed housewives cared for their children for an average of nine hours and six minutes a day before the epidemic, but that rose to 12 hours and 38 minutes once the virus struck.
For double-income couples, the time working mothers spent caring for their children rose from five hours and three minutes to six hours and 47 minutes. But working fathers in double-income families spent only 46 minutes more with their children to total three hours and 54 minutes a day, and men who are the sole breadwinner in the family 29 minutes more at three hours and 30 minutes.

Young People 'at Greater Risk of Spreading Coronavirus'
Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency chief Jung Eun-kyeong warned Monday that young people are at greater risk of spreading coronavirus.
Jung was referring to a study of 6,859 Army boot camp trainees in September and October, most of whom are in their early 20s, which showed that 15 of them had COVID-19 antibodies.
That would translate into a proportion of 0.22 percent or three times higher than the estimate for the overall Korean population. They were compared to a control group of 1,379 people of all ages.

Are Korean Stocks Overheating?
The Korean stock market is rising to fresh records every few days even though the real economy is deep in the doldrums.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index surpassed 2,600 points for the first time ever on Monday, closing up 49.09 points or 1.92 percent at 2,602.59 points. The previous record was 2,598.19 points in January 2018.
The coronavirus epidemic did hit the KOSPI hard in March, when it plunged to a yearly low of 1,457.64 points, but it has risen almost 80 percent since then and 15 percent this month alone.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)
Biden begins transition 20 days after election
The General Services Administration (GSA) acknowledged Wednesday that U.S. President-elect Joe Biden has won the presidential election and embarked on the handover, which makes Biden an official “president-elect” 20 days after the election held on November 3. President Donald Trump effectively admitted his defeat, putting an end to the controversy surrounding concession.

G-Star ends in success despite COVID-19
South Korea’s largest game festival G-Star came to an end on Sunday. During the opening ceremony of the four-day event, which was held without fans due to COVID-19, Korean alphabet “ㅉ (ssang jieut)” plastered the comment section as fans left it to give a virtual round of applause.
Although the venue was calm and quiet unlike at last year’s event that attracted more than 200,000 people, fans showed as much enthusiasm online.

COVID-19’s lingering symptoms are not harsher than influenza, say researchers
Clinical specialists said that aftereffects of COVID-19 is not harsher than influenza. “COVID-19 may leave complications such as cardiovascular and nervous diseases. But common flu viruses also have complications in vessels and nerves,” said Oh Myeong-don, chief of the central clinical committee, at a meeting held by the National Medical Center on Tuesday. “But the lingering symptoms of COVID-19 don’t seem to be more severe than influenza.”
The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
“Only Non-Polluting Vehicles to Be Sold from 2035. Coal Power Plants Out by 2045”
The National Council on Climate and Air Quality of Korea, which reports directly to the president, proposed that the government ban the sale of internal-combustion engine vehicles in South Korea as early as 2035 and raise the price of diesel fuel to near gasoline prices in order to overcome problems of air quality and the climate crisis. The council also announced plans to phase out coal-fired power plants by 2045 at the latest and to reflect environmental costs in the electricity bill by 2030.
The National Council on Climate and Air Quality of Korea held a press conference at the Korea Press Center in Jung-gu, Seoul on November 23 and released mid to long-term national policy recommendations including these details.

Lee In-young, “Restoring Inter-Korean Communication Channels, a Sign of Peace”
On November 23, Minister of Unification Lee In-young (pictured) said, “The restoration of a permanent communications channel between North and South Korea will signal the beginning of peaceful times” and stressed the need for an inter-Korean communications channel. Lee met with businesspeople including those from the four major groups and said, “Let’s prepare for inter-Korean economic cooperation by assigning the roles of the government and companies.”
At a debate on ways to restore positive inter-Korean communication and negotiating bodies at the National Assembly, Lee also said, “Change toward a new inter-Korean relationship will begin by restoring communication in the inter-Korean liaison office.”

Google Puts “Sea of Japan” Before “East Sea” Again
Google stirred controversy by referring to the East Sea as the Sea of Japan first in some domestic services. According to the IT industry on November 22, the Google application (pictured) recently began stating the East Sea as the “Sea of Japan (also known as East Sea)” in its weather service.
When it comes to locations with different names in different countries, Google uses the name used in the country from which the user logs in. For instance, if someone uses Google Maps from South Korea, the body of water to the east of the Korean Peninsula is stated as the “East Sea,” but when accessed from Japan, it is stated as the “Sea of Japan.” If a user logs in from a third country, both names are stated as the “Sea of Japan (East Sea).”

Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
BTS nears the last part of “American journey” with Grammy nomination
K-pop megastar BTS landed their first Grammy nomination on Tuesday, becoming the first South Korean pop artist to earn a nod from the prestigious U.S. music award.
This also makes the septet the first K-pop act to win nominations from all three major U.S. music awards including the Billboard Music Awards and MTV Video Music Awards in a single year.

Chinese payment service Alipay seeks to enter S. Korea next year
Alipay, the online payment platform owned by China’s Alibaba Group, is seeking to expand its services in South Korea to directly go after Korean users, a move that would upend the Korean mobile payment and e-commerce markets dominated by local players such as Naver and Kakao.
Alibaba has met with Korean financial authorities and is expected to file a registration sometime early next year, according to industry sources.

Hyundai Heavy, Eugene join final bid for Doosan Infracore
The tender for a 36.1 percent stake in Doosan Infracore Co., the heavy equipment unit of South Korean conglomerate Doosan Group, has drawn two final bidders – the Hyundai Heavy Industries-KDBI consortium and Eugene Group.
According to industry sources on Tuesday, Hyundai Heavy-KDBI consortium and Eugene Group were confirmed to have submitted final bids for a 36.1 percent stake in Doosan Infracore offered by Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction.

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  www.colombiareports.com
Bogota Free Planet  www.bogotafreeplanet.com bfp@bogotafreeplanet.com
El Universal  www.eluniversal.com.mx/english  
Andes  www.redaktionstest.net/andes-info-ec/ 
Ecuador Times  www.ecuadortimes.net/  
The Jordan Times  www.jordantimes.com/
LSM.lv  www.lsm.lv/
The Baltic Times www.baltictimes.com lithuania@baltictimes.com, estonia@baltictimes.com, editor@baltictimes.com
El Pais  https://english.elpais.com/ 
Philippine Daily Inquirer  www.inquirer.net/ 
Daily News Hungary  https://dailynewshungary.com/ 
Budapest Times  www.budapesttimes.hu/
The Korea Post is running video clips from the different embassies.
Sri Lanka: www.youtube.com/watch?v=hByX92Y2aGY&t=22s
Morocco: 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: www.koreapost.co.kr
English-language Internet edition: www.koreapost.com
Korean-language print newspaper:
English E-daily:http://www.koreapost.com/news/adminArticleWriteForm.html?mode=modify&idxno=21885

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