Headlines, December 4, 2020
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Headlines, December 4, 2020
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  • 승인 2020.12.04 12:04
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Friday, December 4, 2020

 

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

The Korea Post (http://www.koreapost.com/)
Woori Bank receives the 'Global Bank of the Year' award by The Banker
Woori Bank has been honored as the "Global Bank of the Year" by The Banker, a global financial magazine, for the first time in the nation’s banking industry.
The Banker also presented three awards, including the Best Asian Bank and the Best Korean Bank, to Woori Bank, the commercial bank said on Dec. 3.
The Banker is a monthly financial magazine of the British Financial Times that annually selects one best bank by global, regional and country through a rigorous screening process.

Hyosung Chairman Cho Hyun-joon seeks to expand the spandex plant in Brazil
Hyosung Group Chairman Cho Hyun-joon said on Dec. 2 that the group will expand its spandex plant in Brazil after Turkey to cement its No. 1 status in the global spandex market.
Related to this, Hyosung T&C will invest 40 billion won (some $36 million) by December next year to increase the production volume of its spandex plant in Santa Catarina in southern Brazil by 10,000 tons.
When the expansion is completed, the production capacity of the Santa Catarina plant will be doubled to a total of 22,000 tons.

Hanwha Systems wins a top rating of CMMI 2.0 version for the first time
Hanwha Systems  has obtained the highest level of Level 5 certification in the latest 2.0 version of "Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI)," an international R&D capacity evaluation standard.
CMMI is a global software and system quality control competency assessment model developed by the Institute of Software Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University at the request of the U.S. Department of Defense.
CMMI 2.0 version can be certified only by meeting the business and technical requirements of the entire defense R&D sector, such as applied research and development, as well as weapons systems R&D tasks.
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KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)
S. Korea Sees Daily COVID-19 Cases Top 600
The daily COVID-19 count has surpassed 600 for the first time in nine months. 
The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency(KDCA) said that 629 additional people tested positive for the virus as of 12:00 a.m. Friday, raising the country's accumulated total to 36-thousand-332.
Of the new cases, 600 were local transmissions and 29 were imported. Thursday also marked the first time for local infections to hit 600 since early March. The greater Seoul metro area accounted for over 77 percent of all domestic cases, including 291 in Seoul, 155 in Gyeonggi Province and 17 in Incheon.  

Deputy Chief of Ruling Party Chair's Office Found Dead
The deputy chief at the office of the ruling party chair was found dead on Thursday after being questioned about alleged acceptance of funds from the scandal-ridden Optimus Asset Management. 
Police said on Thursday that the deputy chief, identified only by the surname Lee, was found dead near the Seoul Central District Court at around 9:15 p.m. Police said that Lee appeared to have committed a suicide, adding a note has not been found around the body.
The deputy chief at the office of Democratic Party Chairperson Lee Nak-yon was questioned at the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office until 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday. Lee was then supposed to appear for questioning after dinner that day, but went missing.

S. Korea's Current Account Surplus Hits 3-Year High in October
South Korea's current account surplus surpassed ten billion dollars for the second straight month and hit a three-year high in October on a recovery in exports. 
According to the Bank of Korea on Friday, the country's current account surplus reached eleven-point-66 billion U.S. dollars in October.
The current account has been in the black for six straight months since May. The size of the surplus is the largest since September 2017 and the third largest since January 1980.
From a year earlier, the figure jumped nearly 49 percent or three-point-83 billion dollars.
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Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)
New virus cases at 9-month high of over 600, bigger wave of pandemic in progress
The daily number of new coronavirus cases in South Korea topped 600 on Friday, the most in nearly nine months despite tightened antivirus measures, putting the country under a critical alert over a bigger wave of the pandemic coming during the winter.
The country added 629 more COVID-19 cases, including 600 local infections, raising the total caseload to 36,332, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA). It reported seven additional coronavirus fatalities, bringing the total to 536.
What is more concerning is that the greater Seoul area, home to half of the country's population, has been witnessing its daily new cases soar to a record high for the past few days.

U.S. Army Pacific commander named new USFK chief: sources
U.S. Army Pacific Commander Gen. Paul LaCamera has been nominated to be the next commander of the U.S. Forces Korea (USFK), sources said Friday.
If confirmed, LaCamera will succeed Gen. Robert Abrams to lead the 28,500 American troops based in South Korea, as well as to take the helm of the U.N. Command and the South Korea-U.S. Combined Forces Command. Abrams took office in November 2018.
The nomination is part of a routine reshuffle, though no official term of office is set for a USFK commander, the sources said, adding that LaCamera is expected to face a parliamentary hearing in around February or March.

Seoul logs record high 295 coronavirus cases Thursday: acting mayor
Seoul posted 295 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, the highest ever for the city, according to its acting mayor.
Seo Jeong-hyup made the remark during an interview on the CBS radio station Friday, saying the city government plans to draw up additional antivirus measures. The capital city is currently under Level 2 social distancing rules, the middle level of a five-tier scheme.
"If we enter into Level 3 of social distancing, all economic activities will effectively grind to a halt," he said.
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The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
New virus cases at 9-month high of over 600, bigger wave of pandemic in progress
The daily number of new coronavirus cases in South Korea topped 600 on Friday, the most in nearly nine months despite tightened antivirus measures, putting the country under a critical alert over a bigger wave of the pandemic coming during the winter.
The country added 629 more COVID-19 cases, including 600 local infections, raising the total caseload to 36,332, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA). It reported seven additional coronavirus fatalities, bringing the total to 536.
What is more concerning is that the greater Seoul area, home to half of the country's population, has been witnessing its daily new cases soar to a record high for the past few days.

Seoul logs record high 295 coronavirus cases
Seoul posted 295 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, the most ever for the city, health authorities said. The new high came only a day after the capital city set its previous record for daily coronavirus cases with 262 new infections on Wednesday.
Across the country 629 new cases were reported on Thursday, the highest total in nearly nine months, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency.
"It's hard for the antivirus measures to keep up with the pace of spread because cluster infections are emerging simultaneously in various parts of everyday life," acting Seoul Mayor Seo Jeong-hyup said during an interview on the CBS radio station Friday.

S. Korea's current account surplus hits 3-year high in October on export recovery
South Korea's current account surplus hit a three-year high in October as exports showed signs of a modest recovery amid the coronavirus pandemic, the central bank said Friday.
The current account surplus reached $11.66 billion in October, widening from a surplus of $10.13 billion the previous month, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK). The current account is the broadest measure of cross-border trade. It marked the largest surplus since September 2017.
Since the country logged a deficit of $3.33 billion in April, the largest in almost a decade, on faltering exports amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the current account has stayed in the black for six straight months.
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The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
New virus cases at 9-month high of over 600
The daily number of new coronavirus cases in South Korea topped 600 on Friday, the most in nearly nine months despite tightened antivirus measures, putting the country under a critical alert over a bigger wave of the pandemic coming during the winter.
The country added 629 more COVID-19 cases, including 600 local infections, raising the total caseload to 36,332, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA). It reported seven additional coronavirus fatalities, bringing the total to 536.
What is more concerning is that the greater Seoul area, home to half of the country's population, has been witnessing its daily new cases soar to a record high for the past few days. South Korea reported more than 500 daily new infections for three consecutive days through Saturday last week, before briefly falling back to 450 cases Sunday due to less testing over the weekend.

US Army Pacific commander reportedly named as new USFK chief
U.S. Army Pacific Commander Gen. Paul LaCamera has been nominated to be the next commander of the U.S. Forces Korea (USFK), sources said Friday.
If confirmed, LaCamera will succeed Gen. Robert Abrams to lead the 28,500 American troops based in South Korea, as well as to take the helm of the U.N. Command and the South Korea-U.S. Combined Forces Command. Abrams took office in November 2018.
The nomination is part of a routine reshuffle, though no official term of office is set for a USFK commander, the sources said, adding that LaCamera is expected to face a parliamentary hearing in around February or March.

Market expects Hahn & Co. to exit Hanon Systems soon
Stock investors are betting more on Hanon Systems with expectation that its largest shareholder Hahn & Company will unload its stake in the near future. Hanon Systems shares closed at 16,550 won, Thursday, up from 11,550 won a month earlier.
The stock price hiked after the company was identified as one of the beneficiaries of the government's recent attempts to foster eco-friendly industries through the Green New Deal. Hanon Systems is an eco-friendly auto parts supplier for various carmakers, including Tesla and Volkswagen.
Some market analysts, however, attributed a steep rise in the price of the automotive thermal and energy management components to a potential M&A it will likely face soon.
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HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
Korea’s institutionalization of disabled people during the COVID-19 era 
Lee Jung-ha says for the past 20-years she’s heard voices that sometimes insult her or urge her to commit suicide.
These 50 disembodied speakers first started talking to her when she worked in the animation industry, she says. But when Lee sought professional help for schizophrenia at that time, she was given no choice; her doctor and parents committed her to a closed psychiatric ward.
That began a cycle of recovery, release, relapse and readmission by force, she explains.
“One time my family told me we were going to the mountains and when we arrived, men abducted me and took me to a hospital,” she says.

Blue House moves forward with disciplinary procedures against Yoon Seok-youl
On Dec. 2, South Korean President Moon Jae-in appointed Lee Yong-gu, an attorney and former judge, as vice minister of justice. Filling the vacancy was no ordinary personnel reshuffle, but a one-off appointment focused on moving forward disciplinary proceedings against Prosecutor General Yoon Seok-youl. The post was previously held by Koh Ki-young, who resigned on Dec. 1 in protest of those same proceedings.
On Wednesday afternoon, just two days after resuming his duties as prosecutor general, Yoon approved a request for a preliminary detention warrant against officials at the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy who are criminal suspects in a case involving a doctored report about the economic viability of the Wolseong-1 nuclear reactor. The case is currently being investigated by the Daejeon District Prosecutors’ Office.
Yoon’s order to investigate a case that is a thorn in the side of the ruling party so soon after his return is likely to further inflame the dispute between prosecutors and the Democratic Party.

Berlin decides to keep comfort woman statue in place
A statue raised in Berlin to symbolize victims of sexual slavery by the Japanese military will remain in place rather than being removed. Discussions on preserving the statue as a permanent memorial for victims of wartime sexual violence are set to begin.
At a plenary session on Dec. 1, the council of Berlin’s Mitte borough voted on a resolution to keep the statue in place. Chairperson Frank Bertermann (Green Party) explained, “A resolution to preserve the peace statue commemorating victims of sexual violence was passed by majority vote.”
Jointly sponsored by the Green Party and the Left Party, the resolution to keep the statue in place was supported by 24 of 29 borough council members. In addition to withdrawing the order for the statue’s removal, the resolution also pushed the end date for its installation back six weeks from Aug. 14 to late September of next year. It further called for measures to keep the statue in place permanently. Japan’s Yomiuri Shimbun newspaper reported the same day that the borough “appears likely to accept the council’s resolution and recognize the statue’s retention.”
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Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
N.Korean Hackers Try to Steal Coronavirus Cure Info
North Korean hackers tried to break into at least nine pharmaceutical companies, including four in South Korea, seeking to steal information on coronavirus vaccines and treatments.
Reuters on Wednesday reported that the cyberattacks began in September targeting the U.K.'s AstraZeneca and the U.S.' Johnson & Jonhson and Novavax. The South Korean drug makers were Genexine, Boryung Pharmaceutical, Shinpoong Pharmaceutical and Celltrion.
Investigators said the hackers created bogus websites similar to log-in portals used by the drug makers to lure employees to input their identification numbers and passwords. Internet communication logs showed that the web domain and server used in the cyberattacks are linked to North Korean hackers.

Samsung, Hynix Stocks Soar to Fresh Records
Samsung Electronics shares soared to a record W70,500 during the day's trading on Thursday but closed up 0.29 percent at W69,700 as investors took profits (US$1=W1,094). SK Hynix shares also rose to a record W114,500 at one point during the day.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index also closed at a fresh record high of 2,696.22 points on Thursday. Individual investors are flocking to the stock market, drawn by the stellar performances of blue-chip shares.
According to the Korea Exchange, individual investors snapped up W7.64 trillion worth of Samsung and SK Hynix stocks so far this year, accounting for 18 percent of total KOSPI net buying.

Berlin District Rules Sex Slave Statue Can Stay
A statue in Berlin commemorating victims of wartime sexual slavery for the Japanese imperial army can stay despite a planning violation, the Mitte district in the German capital has ruled.
The district council of Mitte, where the statue stands, passed a resolution on Tuesday against the removal, which has been urgently sought by the Japanese government. The district's left-of-center parties -- the Social Democratic Party, the Greens and the Left -- have spoken out against the removal and cast their ballots accordingly.
Left party council member Tilo Urhis said the statue "symbolizes the need to stop sexual violence during war" and added that it is based on historical fact.
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The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)
N.Korean Hackers Try to Steal Coronavirus Cure Info
North Korean hackers tried to break into at least nine pharmaceutical companies, including four in South Korea, seeking to steal information on coronavirus vaccines and treatments.
Reuters on Wednesday reported that the cyberattacks began in September targeting the U.K.'s AstraZeneca and the U.S.' Johnson & Jonhson and Novavax. The South Korean drug makers were Genexine, Boryung Pharmaceutical, Shinpoong Pharmaceutical and Celltrion.
Investigators said the hackers created bogus websites similar to log-in portals used by the drug makers to lure employees to input their identification numbers and passwords. Internet communication logs showed that the web domain and server used in the cyberattacks are linked to North Korean hackers.

Samsung, Hynix Stocks Soar to Fresh Records
Samsung Electronics shares soared to a record W70,500 during the day's trading on Thursday but closed up 0.29 percent from the previous day at W69,700 as investors took profits (US$1=W1,094). SK Hynix shares also rose to a record W114,500 at one point during the day.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index also closed at a fresh record high of 2,696.22 points on Thursday. Individual investors are flocking to the stock market, drawn by the stellar performances of blue-chip shares. On Friday morning, it jumped above 2,700 points as soon as the market opened.
According to the Korea Exchange, individual investors snapped up W7.64 trillion worth of Samsung and SK Hynix stocks so far this year, accounting for 18 percent of total KOSPI net buying.

Berlin District Rules Sex Slave Statue Can Stay
A statue in Berlin commemorating victims of wartime sexual slavery for the Japanese imperial army can stay despite a planning violation, the Mitte district in the German capital has ruled.
The district council of Mitte, where the statue stands, passed a resolution on Tuesday against the removal, which has been urgently sought by the Japanese government. The district's left-of-center parties -- the Social Democratic Party, the Greens and the Left -- have spoken out against the removal and cast their ballots accordingly.
Left party council member Tilo Urhis said the statue "symbolizes the need to stop sexual violence during war" and added that it is based on historical fact. Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato on Tuesday voiced "extreme regret" at the decision.
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The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
“Criminal Punishment Helps Prevent Industrial Accidents” vs. “Strong Punishment Is Ineffective”
Are workplace accidents a kind of professional negligence or willful misconduct by a business owner who was lazy in safety measures? Also, what would be more effective in preventing industrial accidents, stronger punishment or better safety infrastructure?
At a public discussion for a bill on the punishment of businesses for serious industrial accidents at the parliamentary Legislation and Judiciary Committee on December 2, there was a heated debate on the cause of and solution to industrial accidents. A bill seeking to punish businesses for serious industrial accidents was submitted to the parliamentary legislation committee. The new bill stipulates punishment of at least 3 years imprisonment and a fine of up to 1 billion won for the person responsible for management when a worker dies in an industrial accident.

“Influenced by Friends and Social Media... I Started Putting on Makeup in the 5th Grade”
Nineteen-year-old A, who has 20 pieces of makeup, started wearing makeup when she was thirteen. She said, “When I was extremely stressed about my appearance, I couldn’t go outside without makeup, so I always wore a mask. I was so ashamed of my bare face, even when I had to eat, I would eat as fast as I could because I didn’t want to take off my mask.”
A is a case introduced in a report of a survey on teenagers and makeup released by the Korean Women’s Environmental Network on December 2. The report included in-depth interviews of 21 teenagers. The average age of the interviewees was 16.4, and all except one had the experience of putting on makeup. The average age at which they first wore makeup was 12.7, in the fifth grade. They owned from as little as one to as many as over fifty items of makeup. Of the 21 teenagers who were interviewed, 16 owned more than ten pieces of makeup.

A Critical Public with More Voices Holding the President Accountable: Two Days for the President to Clean up His Own Mess
President Moon Jae-in is struggling to find a way out of the dispute between Justice Minister Choo Mi-ae and Prosecutor General Yoon Seok-youl. The clear confrontation between the ruling government and the Prosecution Service has not only weakened the president’s drive for state administration, but it has also been the cause of worsening public opinion. More attention is on the suggestion by Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun, who stressed a political decision and advised the president to simultaneously dismiss Minister Choo and Prosecutor General Yoon. This day, the justice ministry postponed a meeting of the disciplinary committee to determine actions against the prosecutor general two days to December 4, which gives the president some time to seek a political solution.
However, more than a few experts believe it will not be easy for the president, who stresses legal procedures, to determine the future of Yoon, when the procedure for disciplinary measures against Yoon is still ongoing. Whatever the process, if the president dismisses the prosecutor general--whose term is guaranteed by law--during his term, he will have to bear the political burden as well as the aftermath.
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Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
Korean won rally raises alarm for Korean exporters
The South Korean won hit a 30-month high against the U.S. dollar on Thursday and is likely to strengthen further next year, posing a major risk to Korean exports.
The won finished at 1,097.0 per U.S. dollar on Thursday, breaking the key psychological level of 1,100. On Friday morning, it was quoted at 1,093.0 won, up 1.00 won, or 0.09 percent from the previous session.
The growing risk-taking appetite has pushed down the U.S. dollar while fueling demand for riskier assets including emerging market currencies. The U.S. dollar has weakened to multiyear lows on expectations of fresh stimulus in the U.S. and positive news of Covid-19 vaccine developments.

KT to create original shows starting 2021 to join streaming wars
South Korea’s major telecommunications company KT Corp. will create its original shows starting next year to add edge to the competition in the ever-growing content streaming market in the country that is currently led by global giant Netflix and YouTube.
A high-ranking official from the company tipped Thursday that the telco is seeking to produce its original shows that will have six to up to 16 episodes for one season. It now has been in talks with multiple drama producers to release 20 or more original drama series by 2023.
The original shows will be provided via its internet protocol TV service platform Olleh TV and cable TV KT Skylife. The country’s No.1 pay TV service operator also runs a music streaming platform Genie Music.

Korea’s job portal Jobkorea invites big PEFs, corporate names to stake sale
South Korea’s dominant job portal provider Jobkorea is accelerating its search for a new owner with an aim to shortlist candidates before the end of this year despite Covid-19 uncertainties.
H&Q Korea, its current owner, has sent out teaser letters to about 20 candidates, reportedly including private equity funds such as Affinity Equity Partners, Carlyle and CVC Capital Partners and big corporate names, to invite them to a tender for its full stake in Jobkorea, one of the country’s top two job portal operators, on Dec. 14, according to industry sources on Thursday. The company has picked Morgan Stanley to lead the sale process.
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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 
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/
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The Korea Post is running video clips from the different embassies.
Azerbaijan:  
www.youtube.com/watch?v=OR8CBpcQ4WM 
Sri Lanka:  www.youtube.com/watch?v=hByX92Y2aGY&t=22s
Morocco:  www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfFmp2sVvSE
And many other countries.
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