The Korean daily media headlines and humor
The Korean daily media headlines and humor
  • Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2017.01.26 11:46
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The Korean daily media headlines and humor

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Your Excellency:

Here are The Korea Post notices and a roundup of important headlines from all major Korean-language dailies, TV and other news media of Korea today:

Very Respectfully Yours


Lee Kyung-sik


Korea Post Media

Major topics on The Korea Post website ( this morning:

Acting president calls for stepped-up crackdown on crimes against women, children

Acting President and Prime Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn on Thursday called for enhanced crackdowns on crimes against women and children as part of efforts to ensure public safety amid a national leadership crisis.

Seoul pledges support for overseas construction deals to boost exports

South Korea will make all-out efforts to boost its exports this year, partly by helping local firms develop global leading products and win large overseas construction projects, the government said Thursday.

Kia Motors Q4 net dips 25.7 pct on-year

South Korea's No. 2 carmaker Kia Motors Corp. said Thursday its net profit dropped sharply from a year earlier in the fourth quarter.Net profit came to 320 billion won (US$276.3 million) in the October-December period, down 25.7 percent from the same period a year earlier, the company said in a regulatory filing.

Seoul mayor to drop presidential bid: sources

Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon, who has been cited as one of the potential candidates for the next presidential election, decided to withdraw his candidacy, sources said Thursday.

SK hynix's Q4 profit tops 1.5 trl won

SK hynix Inc., a global chipmaker, said Thursday its operating profit for the fourth quarter of last year jumped 55.3 percent on-year thanks to a steady recovery in memory chip prices.The South Korean chipmaker said in a regulatory filing that it posted an operating profit of 1.53 trillion won (US$1.31 billion) for the October-December period of 2016.

Corporate name switch no guarantee for higher stock prices: data

A corporate name change usually meant to raise brand image tends to bear little fruit when it comes to share prices, data showed Thursday.A growing number of listed firms here have chosen a title shift in recent years.Ninety-nine companies -- 19 on the main bourse KOSPI and 80 on the secondary KOSDAQ market -- changed their names last year, versus 68 in 2014 and 98 in 2015.

N.K. leader orders completion of new residential areas by April

North Korea's leader has ordered the completion of a new residential district building project in Pyongyang "at any cost" by the birthday of his late grandfather in April, the North's state media said Thursday.

LG Chem net up 11.5 pct in 2016

LG Chem Ltd., South Korea's top chemicals firm, said Thursday that its net profit increased 11.5 percent last year from a year earlier on steady demand for its key products, particularly basic materials.

S. Korea's biz sentiment dips to 12-month low for Feb.

An index indicating South Korean companies' business outlook has dipped to a 12-month low with a majority of local firms forecasting sluggish conditions for nine consecutive months, the index showed Thursday.

S. Korea's manufacturing sentiment up for Feb.

South Korean manufacturers' business sentiment for next month improved, as they expect an increase in domestic demand and exports, central bank data showed Thursday.The business survey index (BSI) of manufacturing firms came to 76 in February, up from 71 in January, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK).

For up-to-the-minute Korea-language news, please visit there major topics on The Korea Post website (

What’s ticking in Korea today? Here is a quick roundup of important news stories from the major Korean news media today:


Constitutional Court Chief Wants Verdict on Impeachment Case before March 13

Constitutional Court President Park Han-chul called for a final decision in the impeachment trial of President Park Geun-hye before March 13th, which is when Justice Lee Jung-mi will retire.

The chief justice made the remark on Wednesday shortly after the ninth hearing in the president's impeachment trial began.

N. Korea Renews Threat to Launch ICBM

North Korea has again spoken about its intention to launch an intercontinental ballistic missile(ICBM), as a growing number of U.S. officials under the new Donald Trump administration are raising the concerns over the North Korea’s nuclear threat. Against this backdrop, U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis is said to be planning a visit to South Korea early next month. Mina Cha has more.

Choi Calls Independent Probe Team 'Undemocratic'

Choi Soon-sil, the woman at the center of the massive influence-peddling scandal, expressed sheer frustration as she was forcibly summoned for questioning by the independent counsel on Wednesday.

Choi, who was taken from the Seoul Detention Center to the special prosecutors' headquarters, shouted to reporters upon arrival that the independent counsel team is not democratic. She claimed she was being falsely accused and being forced to confess.

'Acting President Leaving the Door Open for Presidential Run'

The floor leader of the ruling Saenuri Party says Acting President and Prime Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn seems to be leaving the door open for a presidential bid.

Chung Woo-taik told reporters at the National Assembly on Wednesday that recent surveys show Hwang has some supporters, adding the decision to run for the top office depends on him.

Gov't to Implement Special Safety Measures during Holidays

Acting President Hwang Kyo-ahn said Wednesday that the government will put in place special safety measures throughout the Lunar New Year holidays.

Ahn made the remark during a meeting of safety-related ministers in Seoul ahead of the holiday period that begins from Friday.

RFA: US Reissues Advisory against Financial Transactions with N. Korea

Radio Free Asia(RFA) says the Barack Obama administration warned against carrying out financial transactions with North Korea just before completing the transition of power to the Donald Trump administration.

Hyundai Motor's Operating Profit Tumbles to 5.2Tln Won in 2016

South Korea’s top automaker Hyundai Motor’s operating profit tumbled to the five trillion won level last year for the first time since 2010 due to the global economic slowdown and strikes.

Hyundai announced on Wednesday that its operating profit came to five-point-19 trillion won, down 18-point-three percent from a year earlier.


Yonhap (

S. Korea's manufacturing sentiment up for Feb.

South Korean manufacturers' business sentiment for next month improved, as they expect an increase in domestic demand and exports, central bank data showed Thursday.

The business survey index (BSI) of manufacturing firms came to 76 in February, up from 71 in January, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK).

Mattis to visit S. Korea to reaffirm U.S. commitment to alliance: Pentagon

U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis will visit South Korea next week on his first trip since taking office to underscore the U.S. commitment to the alliance between two countries, the Pentagon said Wednesday.

Naver's Q4 profit spikes 35 pct on overseas sales increase

South Korea's top Internet portal operator Naver Corp. said Thursday its net profit soared 35 percent from a year earlier in the fourth quarter as its sales reached a record high on growing sales from overseas and its mobile business.

U.S. Pacific Army commander says N. Korea is his biggest concern

The U.S. Pacific Army commander said Wednesday North Korea is his biggest concern as the unpredictable communist nation has aggressively forged ahead with its nuclear and missile programs.

N. Korea ready to test-fire ICBM 'at any time, at any place': Pyongyang diplomat

North Korea is ready to test-launch an intercontinental ballistic missile "at any time, at any place," a senior diplomat in Pyongyang was quoted as saying Wednesday.

Choe Kang-il, deputy director general for North American affairs at the North's foreign ministry, made the threat in an interview in Pyongyang with NBC Television, repeating Pyongyang's long-running claims its nuclear and missile programs are for self-defense purposes.

S. Korea's biz sentiment dips to 12-month low for Feb.

An index indicating South Korean companies' business outlook has dipped to a 12-month low with a majority of local firms forecasting sluggish conditions for nine consecutive months, the index showed Thursday.


The Korea Herald (

Park calls her corruption allegations preposterous, colossal lies

Impeached President Park Geun-hye on Wednesday denied a slew of corruption allegations against her once again, calling them "preposterous, colossal" lies.

During an hour-long interview with Jeong Kyu-jae, the chief editorial writer of the local Korea Economic Daily newspaper, Park said that "the crippling scandal involving her and her longtime confidante Choi Soon-sil appears to have been premeditated."

Opposition lawmaker to apologize over Park’s nude portrait exhibition

Rep. Pyo Chang-won of the main opposition Democratic Party of Korea on Wednesday promised to make a public apology over the exhibition of a portrait of President Park Geun-hye in the nude.

His remark was deemed a move to quickly resolve the dispute before it inflicts a blow on the party’s leadership or its presidential front-runner Moon Jae-in ahead of the upcoming election.

Reluctant Choi Soon-sil summoned by probe team after court order

The special prosecutor’s team investigating President Park Geun-hye’s corruption scandal has executed an arrest writ issued against Park’s close friend Choi Soon-sil for interrogation, who had been in custody under charges of extorting money from business groups using ties with the president.

Chief justice calls for ruling on Park’s impeachment by March 13

Park Han-chul, the outgoing chief of the Constitutional Court, said Wednesday the final ruling on President Park Geun-hye’s impeachment should be made by March 13, which in turn will bring forward a presidential election as early as late April.

LG’s 2016 performance improves except for smartphone

LG Electronics on Wednesday announced its performance improved last year, although its mobile device unit performed worse than a year earlier.

According to a regulatory filing, LG said it posted 55.4 trillion won ($47.5 billion) in sales and 1.34 trillion won in operating profit in 2016.


The Korea Times (

Impeachment ruling deadline set for March 13

Constitutional Court President Park Han-chul said Wednesday that the court should make a ruling on President Park Geun-hye's impeachment by March 13.

The call for a speedier decision reflects concerns that the impeachment trial might not be completed as two out of nine justices are soon to retire.

The outgoing justices are Park and Lee Jung-mi whose six-year terms end Jan. 31 and March 13, respectively.

Moon Jae-in hits Duterte over murder case

Moon Jae-in, the leading presidential hopeful from the main opposition Democratic Party of Korea (DPK), has criticized the Philippine president for not taking responsible action against the abduction and murder of a Korean businessman there by local policemen.

Accused Korean Air 'psycho' scrambles defenders

The accused Korean Air "psycho," who assaulted a passenger and several cabin crew, has gathered a team of lawyers with powerful credentials even before making an official apology to his victims.

Pre-historic 'caveman' terrorizes Daegu [PHOTOS]

A half-naked, hairy prehistoric Cro-Magnon man was discovered in the middle of Daegu Tuesday. The caveman somehow climbed a street sign beside a road and started bashing a rock-head hammer against a traffic sign until it was dented.

US protectionism may push Korea closer to China

U.S. President Donald Trump's protectionist trade policy may push Korea closer to China economically, analysts said Wednesday.

These concerns were raised after Trump decided to pull the United States out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). He has also called for the renegotiation of the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (KORUS-FTA).

SK expands semiconductor business

Competition between local semiconductor vendors SK and Samsung is heating up amid an unprecedented boom in the memory chip market.

In addition, it is likely to get fiercer as global semiconductor revenue is forecast to grow by more than 7 percent this year, according to a U.S. research and advisory firm, Wednesday.


Dong-A Ilbo (

U.S. expert predicts Trump to target S. Korea’s currency ‘manipulation’

A senior official at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce projected that while the Donald Trump administration is pushing for protectionist trade policy, it will not be long before Washington officially raises an issue with South Korea’s foreign exchange “manipulation.”

Lee Seung-yeop vs. Lee Dae-ho

During a new year’s interview at Daegu early this month, Samsung hitter Lee Seung-yeop suddenly commented on the 35-year-old Lotte Giants slugger Lee Dae-ho.

China protests U.S. imposition of duties on Chinese tires

A detonator in the U.S.-China trade war has gone off for the first time since U.S. President Donald Trump took office last week. After the United States decided to impose heavy anti-dumping duties of up to tires imported from China, Beijing strongly protested the move, taking the issue to the World Trade Organization.

E-Land sells Teenie Weenie to China at 750 million dollars

E-Land Group has finalized talks with Chinese fashion group V-Grass to sell its fashion brand Teenie Weenie at 5.13 billion yuan (750 million dollars).

"Teenie Weenie’s net assets amount to 120 billion won (128 million dollars) in book value, and we sold it at 877 billion won (751 million dollars) considering brand value and future growth capability," E Land said. "It is the biggest sales price for a Korean fashion brand."


Chosun-Ilbo (

East Asian Customers' Taste in Cars Varies Widely

East Asians' tastes in cars vary widely from country to country, presenting a delicate task for planners at the region's leading automakers.

The Chosun Ilbo looked more closely at the preferences of Koreans, Japanese and Chinese as competition in the market intensifies.

China Auto Show Highlights Luxurious SUVs in Slowing Market

Automakers are showcasing a new generation of luxurious SUVs at China's biggest auto show of the year as they battle for buyers in the country's cooling, crowded market.

Honda Motor held world debuts Monday for two SUVs, reflecting China's high profile in the global industry. Ford, Volkswagen, General Motors and China's Chery also displayed new SUVs, many never meant to be driven off-road and equipped with heated seats, Web-linked navigation, entertainment centers and other features.

Park in Urgent Pow Wow with Attorneys

Embattled President Park Geun-hye's lawyers huddled around her for more than an hour Tuesday to discuss strategies as the noose tightens in her impeachment trial.

Park's attorney Lee Joong-hwan said in a text message sent to journalists, "The meeting took place at Cheong Wa Dae and lasted for about an hour and 20 minutes."

New Conservative Party Launched

The Bareun Party made up of lawmakers who defected from the ruling Saenuri Party was launched in Seoul on Tuesday.

The launch comes 28 days after a group of members not aligned with President Park Geun-hye broke away from her sinking ship on Dec. 27 last year in the wake of the parliamentary vote to impeach her.

Most Customers Still Prefer Korean Beef

About one-third of homemakers will continue to purchase domestic beef despite price hikes, according to a recent poll by the Rural Development Administration.

Of the 747 people surveyed, 33.6 percent preferred Korean beef, while 36.7 percent said they would buy both Korean and imported beef.


HanKyoReh-Shinmoon (

Samsung Electronics records $171.5 billion in sales for fifth straight year

Samsung Electronics recorded 200 trillion won (US$171.5 billion) in sales for five straight years, racking up record performance in its semiconductor sector on a quarterly basis. It has also begun returning profits to shareholders in earnest through bigger dividends and purchasing and retirement of treasury stock.

Special Prosecutor looking to question Pres. Park in person in early February

The investigative team of Special Prosecutor Park Young-soo is coordinating with President Park Geun-hye on a schedule for in-person questioning, it was confirmed on Jan. 24.

The team also plans to conduct a search and seizure on the Blue House shortly after concluding that one is possible based on a review of relevant laws.

According to accounts from legal sources on Jan. 24, the team recently proposed to Park Geun-hye’s side that in-person questioning be conducted around early February. Park’s representatives have not yet given a clear answer on whether she will agree, sources said.

US provides first humanitarian aid to North Korea in five years

The US government has reportedly sent humanitarian aid earmarked for flood relief to North Korea’s North Hamgyong Province via the UN.

“Shortly before President Obama left office, the Obama administration sent humanitarian aid to North Korea by way of the UN, and the Trump administration is planning to make this public before long,” an expert on the Korean Peninsula in Washington who is familiar with affairs in the US government told the Hankyoreh on Jan. 24. This expert said that American aid to North Korea was at a “symbolic level” and did not mention the exact size or the items provided.

Minjoo Party lawmaker faces discipline over nude painting featuring Pres. Park

The opposition Minjoo Party decided at an emergency supreme council meeting on Jan. 24 to refer lawmaker Pyo Chang-won to its ethics committee for possible disciplinary action over a controversial exhibition of satirical artwork that included an image of President Park Geun-hye’s face transposed on a nude painting.

US departure from TPP to benefit South Korea in short term

The US’s decision to bow out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will be beneficial to South Korean trade in the short term, but demands wariness in the medium to long term as a reaffirmation of the Donald Trump administration’s strong protectionist stance, experts are saying.


JoongAng-Ilbo(conservative) (

Impeachment trial gets deadline

The chief justice of the Constitutional Court said Wednesday that the impeachment trial of President Park Geun-hye must be concluded by March 13, before the nine-judge bench will have any more vacancies after his own retirement.

Gov’t will order vessels to buck up shipbuilders

The government announced Wednesday it will order 1.5 trillion won ($1.29 billion) worth of vessels for military use in the first half of the year to help the troubled shipbuilding industry.

The government will create a fund to help domestic shippers order more than 10 ships this year and also give more financial and job training support to people laid off from shipbuilding jobs.

James Mattis’ 1st trip will be to Korea, Japan

James Mattis, secretary of defense in the Donald Trump administration, is expected to make his first overseas trip to Korea and Japan next month, according to multiple diplomatic sources. Mattis is expected to hold talks with Korean Defense Minister Han Min-koo amid concerns over North Korea’s nuclear and missile provocations.

Hyundai Motor’s profit tanks on slow demand

Hyundai Motor reported 2016 profit of 5.19 trillion won ($4.41 billion) on Wednesday, marking the first time in six years that annual profit fell below 6 trillion won, a result of slowing global demand and recurring labor strikes last year.

LG was in the red in Q4 but 2016 results not bad

LG Electronics reported its first quarterly operating loss in six years Wednesday as it failed to revive its money-losing smartphone business amid weaker sales of home appliances.

LG posted an operating loss of 35.2 billion won ($30.1 million) for the October-December period of last year compared with a profit of 348.9 billion won for the same quarter in 2015, the company said in a regulatory filing.

Exports of chicken soup to China hurt by bird flu

The country’s worst bird flu outbreak in years has hurt Korean exports of samgyetang, or chicken ginseng soup, to China.

Between November and December, exports of the popular soup fell more than 90 percent to 5.5 tons, equating to $31,544, according to data from the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs and the state-run Korea Agro-Fisheries & Food Trade Corporation. It’s a sharp drop considering the figures in November stood at 71.9 tons and $332,097.

Woori opts to keep current CEO

Woori Bank, which was recently privatized, has nominated Lee Kwang-goo for a second term as CEO, the bank said Wednesday.

Lee, the current CEO of the Korean bank who oversaw its privatization, was selected by a committee of outside directors over his competitors Kim Seung-gyu, former executive vice president of the bank, and Lee Dong-gun, head of the bank’s business support group.


The KyungHyang-Shinmoon(

Lee Jae-myung, “I Will Be the First Laborer to Become the President of the Republic of Korea”

On January 23, the Mayor of Seongnam-si Lee Jae-myung (53), a member of the Minjoo Party of Korea, announced his presidential bid in front of a factory where he had worked as a minor, saying, “I will be the first laborer to become the president of the Republic of Korea.” He introduced his colorful life including his birth into a poor family and his experience as a minor worker and said, “I will be happy when everyone can live well in a fair environment.”

On January 23, the Mayor of Seongnam-si Lee Jae-myung (53), a member of the Minjoo We Need to Determine the Health Insurance Premium Based on a Single Criterion, Income

Yesterday, the Ministry of Health and Welfare announced changes to the national health insurance focused on better ways to calculate the premium. The new changes mainly lower the premium burden on low-income local subscribers while raising the premium of high-income employees and beneficiaries. The welfare ministry plans to change the current system used to impose health insurance contributions from 2018 to 2024 in three stages and gradually raise the proportion of the premium imposed according to income, while lowering the proportion based on property.

Ahn Hee-jung, “Let‘s Change the World with a Young President!”

Ahn Hee-jung (52), governor of Chungcheongnam-do officially declared his bid for the nineteenth presidential election. The declaration was made in an unprecedented way: announcing his presidential vision in a Q&A session with citizens that lasted for five hours.


The Korea Economic Daily (

Impeachment Trial Must Be Finalized before March 13"...Constitutional Court Chief Justice

The chief of the Constitutional Court said on January 26 that a verdict on President Park Geun-hye's impeachment must be made before March 13 when the term of his fellow Justice Lee Jung-mi expires. This is the first time for the court to remark on the time schedule of the impeachment trial publicly.

First Salvo in America's Trade War with China Delivered

The U.S. government ruled on Chinese-made tires for trucks and buses that these products were dumped in the U.S. market on the back of subsidies provided by the government. This is the first protectionist measure taken against China by the Trump administration just five days after Donald Trump took office. Even though the U.S. International Trade Commission will make the final ruling on the matter, trade experts said this is the first salvo by the American administration in a trade war with China.

K-Pop Industry Relies More on Japan Than China

SM Entertainment, one of Korea's top-three entertainment companies, achieved about 12 percent of its 2015 sales (195.4 billion won) from the Chinese market. In the third quarter of last year, the share of the Chinese market in SM's overall sales rose to 14.4 percent. However, such a share is estimated to have decline to 12-13 percent at the end of last year due to the Chinese government's retaliatory measures against Korea's decision to deploy the THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) missile defense system.

Korea to Set up Special Firm to Help Improve Financial Structure of Shipping Firms

The Korean government is set to establish a special entity with a task of helping improve the financial structure of the nation's shipping companies. The special entity, tentatively named "Korea Ships & Oceans," will acquire 12 containerships from Hyundai Merchant Marine at a market price which is now lower than the book value

Drive-through Coffee Shops on the Rise in Place of Gas Stations

A Starbucks store just 700 meters away from Exit 3 of Bangi Line No. 5 subway station used to be a gas station only a year ago. The owner of the gas station closed shop and instead opened a Starbucks drive-through store in September last year. An average of 1,000 customers visit the store lately, about 20-30 percent more than comparable stores.


AJU Business Daily (

President Park's crony goes into sudden hysterics before being questioned

The jailed crony of President Park Geun-hye went into sudden hysterics before being questioned Wednesday, ranting and raving about what she called an "undemocratic" investigation by special prosecutors.

A photographer shows who the real king of his household is

A renown photographer, Rafael Mantesso, shows who the real king of his household is. He posted a whimsical video of massaging his famous bull terrier in a humorous fashion on his Instagram page. The post went viral and garnered over 267,000 views and 43,900 likes in 2 days.

Crosswalk illumination leads to sharp drop in traffic accidents

Concentrated crosswalk illumination installed by police in the southern port city of Busan for the first time turned out to be very effective in reducing traffic accidents.

Traffic accidents at zebra crossing fell 34.2 percent last year after spotlights were installed to illuminate the path of pedestrians, police in Busan said. More encouraging is that the rate of traffic deaths at the crosswalks fell by 100 percent.

Hyundai Motor posts lowest Q4 profit in six years

South Korea's leading automaker, Hyundai Motor Co., reported a 30 percent drop in fourth-quarter net profit Wednesday, reflecting sluggish sales and lost production caused by a prolonged work stoppage.


Maeil Business News Korea (

Hyundai Motor Q4 profits down by more than 30%

Poorer performance at home and abroad has taken a toll on the fourth-quarter bottom line for South Korea’s largest automaker Hyundai Motor Co. as it reeled from a lengthy strike and unseasonable climate disruptions on top of challenges from Chinese rivals in overseas markets.

Hyundai Motor vows to bolster sales, keeps payout unchanged

Hyundai Motor Co. that Wednesday released its worst annual report card in six years vowed to do better this year by selling 5.08 million cars - 683,000 units at home and 4,397,000 overseas - through productive mix of vehicles customized for each market across the globe

Posco chief gets board nod for another 3-year term despite scandal

South Korea’s largest steelmaker Posco kept its incumbent chief executive officer Kwon Oh-joon at the helm for another three years despite some suspicions about his association with influence-peddling scandal.

S.Korean govt earmarks $5.57 bn funding to revive shipping industry

The Korean government earmarked a 6.5 trillion won ($5.57 billion) subsidy program to boost the competitiveness of the nation`s embattled shipping industry.

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