The Korean daily media headlines and humor
Monday May 15, 2017
Here are The Korea Post notices and a roundup of importantheadlines from all major Korean-language dailies, TV and other news media of Korea today:
Very Respectfully Yours
Korea Post Media
Moon expected to set up new control tower for industrial restructuring
The Moon Jae-in administration is expected to set up a new control tower for industrial restructuring as soon as its new Cabinet takes shape, inside sources said Monday.
President Moon's official campaign pledges do not specify actions or directions for restructuring. For the shipbuilding and shipping industries that are in the middle of major overhauls, the pledge has been that the two industries cannot be abandoned, and that they will be rebuilt through co-existence.
Hong Jong-haak, a former legislator who served as vice chief of Moon's policy panel, indicated that a basic framework for the new control tower is already in place. "I understand that the emergency economic policy team has already reported directly to the president," he said.
The former Park Geun-hye government initiated an industrial revamp in October 2015, pinpointing shipbuilding, shipping, steel, petrochemicals and construction as the country's weak industries that need urgent restructuring. Different measures were adopted for each industry. In June last year, the deputy premier in charge of economic affairs installed a new ministerial meeting to coordinate different opinions within the government.
But the process was less than perfect. In formulating a rescue package for Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering, for instance, the financial regulator and the trade ministry insisted on different liquidation costs for the company. In the case of Hanjin Shipping, which went bankrupt in March, its ships were confiscated and barred at overseas ports, while the ill-prepared government scrambled to avoid a cargo transport crisis.
Moon's comments during the presidential campaign were that Daewoo Shipbuilding must be resuscitated at all costs, suggesting that his administration will get actively involved as creditors get ready with 2.9 trillion won (US$2.57 billion) in cash injections.
The problem is that the control tower has to be made up of a number of different agencies, said professor Kim Sang-jo of Hansung University, who had worked in President Moon's campaign team.
"We need a big picture first on how the control tower will be formed and operated." (Yonhap)
What’s ticking in Korea today?Here is a quick roundup of important news stories from the major Korean news media today:
Pyongyang Claims Sunday's Strategic Ballistic Missile Test Success
North Korea claimed that Sunday’s intermediate-range strategic ballistic missile test was a success. The North’s Korean Central News Agency(KCNA) said on Monday that the test launch of its new “Hwasong-12” went successfully. The media outlet said the test was to confirm the capabilities of the mid- to long-range missile on which a heavyweight nuclear warhead can be mounted. It claimed the missile reached an altitude of two-thousand-111-point-five kilometers before flying 787 kilometers to hit the targeted area in open waters.
Moon Gives Grave Warning to N. Korea over Missile Launch
President Moon Jae-in has given a grave warning to North Korea over its ballistic missile launch early Sunday morning, calling it a reckless provocation. Upon receiving a report about the North Korean missile firing, the president immediately convened an emergency meeting of the National Security Council and ordered the military to stay on standby and maintain a watertight defense readiness in order to counter any military provocation from North Korea.
Japan Calls for Adherence to 2015 Seoul-Tokyo Deal on Sex Slavery
The Japanese government is maintaining its stance that a 2015 South Korea-Japan agreement on Japan’s wartime enslavement of women for sex must be respected. Tokyo reiterated the stance, after the United Nations Committee against Torture recommended in a report on Friday that Seoul and Tokyo revise their deal aimed at settling the bitter historical dispute over Japan’s conscription of Korean women into sex slavery during wartime. The Japanese government’s concern is that the UN committee’s recommendation would lend support to new South Korean President Moon Jae-in’s campaign promise to renegotiate the settlement, reigniting a new diplomatic row between the two countries.
N.K. says it successfully test-fires new ballistic missile
North Korea said Monday it has successfully tested-fired a new ground-to-ground medium long-range ballistic missile, claiming that the U.S. mainland is within its striking range. North Korean leader Kim Jong-un observed the launch of the rocket, called the Hwasong-12, on Sunday, according to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA). North Korea fired the missile from a site northwest of Pyongyang, according to South Korea's military. It marked the North's first provocation since South Korea's new President Moon Jae-in took office Wednesday. The KCNA said that the missile reached an altitude of 2,111.5 kilometers in an indication that it may be a new type of a ballistic missile under development. It flew 787 km, it added.
U.N. Security Council to discuss N.K. missile launch
The U.N. Security Council will meet this week to discuss responses to North Korea's latest missile launch, news reports said Sunday. The United States and Japan requested an urgent session on the North's missile launch, and Uruguay, which holds this month's Security Council, decided to hold a meeting Tuesday, the reports said. "There are no excuses that justify North Korea's actions. This was close to home for Russia. China can't expect dialogue. This threat is real," U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley said in a Twitter message. This year alone, the council has adopted five statements condemning the North's missile launches.
U.S. senator to introduce bill calling for more missile interceptors to defend against N. Korea
A U.S. senator plans to introduce a bill this week that calls for significantly beefing up ground-based missile interceptors in the United States to better defend against North Korea, according to a news report Sunday. Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK) will bring in the legislation that asks for adding an additional 28 Ground-Based Interceptors in Alaska and California, the Hill reported, citing unidentified Senate staffers. The U.S. currently has 30 interceptors, four in California and the rest in Alaska, and plans to add 14 more by the end of this year, the report said. "If you want to protect the continental United States, Alaska is literally the front line and the best place and to do that from an attack from North Korea," a Senate staff member familiar with the bill was quoted as telling the newspaper.
U.S. envoy: N.K. missile launch 'not a way to sit down' for negotiations with Trump
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley slammed North Korea's latest missile launch, saying Sunday that such a provocative act "is not a way to sit down" for negotiations that the communist nation wants. Speaking on ABC's "This Week," Haley also said that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un appears to be in a "state of paranoia" and the latest missile launch is believed to be aimed at sending a message to South Korea after the election of new President Moon Jae-in. Haley also said the United States will continue to tighten the screws on Pyongyang.
The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
Moon Jae-in urges stern response to NK launch
President Moon Jae-in on Sunday called for tough countermeasures to North Korean provocations following its latest missile launch. “The possibility of dialogue is open, but provocations must be met with stern responses to prevent North Korea from making misjudgments,” Moon said at a National Security Council meeting at 8 a.m. “(Seoul) must show that dialogue is possible only when North Korea changes its behavior.” The newly elected liberal president has stated on a number of occasions that he would take a softer approach to Pyongyang than his predecessors and that he is open to engaging in dialogue if necessary conditions are met.
Anti-graft law causes confusion ahead of Teachers’ Day
The age-old tradition of giving gifts to teachers on Teachers Day on May 15 is now against the law in South Korea, but many parents still have no clue as to what extent the laws goes. A series of questions bombarded the anti-graft watchdog’s official website Friday, asking whether giving a handmade carnation flower or a small gift valued at less than 50,000 won ($44.50) would be illegal under the anti-graft law. The Kim Young-ran Act, named after the former Supreme Court justice who first drafted it, took effect in September as part of the government’s attempt to clamp down on bribery practices
Cheong Wa Dae renews official webpage
The presidential officel Cheong Wa Dae renewed its official webpage, featuring President Moon Jae-in on its main page and sharing his daily schedules as part of his pledge to communicate more closely with the public. The renewed version of Cheong Wa Dae's webpage (http://www.president.go.kr/) was open Sunday, Moon's fifth day as the nation's 19th president. The main page shows Moon waving his hands to the audience during his inauguration ceremony held at the National Assembly on May 10, along with an excerpt from his speech.
The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
Moon sternly warns against N. Korea provocation
North Korea launched a ballistic missile Sunday in what appeared to be a test of the new South Korean government's inter-Korean policy just four days after Moon Jae-in took office. Moon immediately convened an emergency National Security Council (NSC) meeting, in which he condemned the launch. The president made it clear he will deal sternly with any provocations, saying dialogue is only possible if the North changes its hostile attitude. The Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said an unidentified missile flew about 700 kilometers after being launched at 5:27 a.m. from near Kusong, North Pyongyan Province, a military industrial area about 100 kilometers north of Pyongyang.
China calls for 'restraint' after N. Korea missile test
China called for "restraint" and for no country to do anything that might increase tension on the Korean Peninsula after North Korea's latest missile test on Sunday. "All relevant parties should exercise restraint and refrain from further aggravating tensions in the region," China's foreign ministry said in a statement. "Relevant (U.N.) Security Council resolutions have clear rules about North Korea using ballistic missile technology to carry out launches. China opposes relevant launch activities by North Korea that are contrary to Security Council resolutions."
First lady in spotlight for caring image
While Korea's President Moon Jae-in is enjoying the buzz about his down-to-earth leadership, his wife has also come into the spotlight for the same reason. Thousands of internet users, Saturday, shared the photo of first lady Kim Jung-sook walking hand in hand with a woman, surnamed Bae, who demanded the new president resolve her problem in front of their private residence in northwestern Seoul. Kim, who was busy preparing to move into the presidential office, heard her complaint early in the morning and walked out to see her on behalf of her husband, who was on a hike with journalists at that time.
Computers better to be untouched amid global ransomware attacks
Multiple simultaneous ransomware attacks hit around 100 nations worldwide, and Korean university hospitals and corporates were also the suspected targets of the recent cybercrime. Named as "WannaCry," the damages spread by the new ransomware is developing at a fast pace, as the new cyber attack can infiltrate computers when they are connected to Internet networks. Monday will be the turning point for Korea, as many computers at public institutions and private businesses will be turned on after the weekend.
China condemns N. Korea for ruining its big day
Chinese foreign ministry said in an emergency statement on Sunday, “The UN Security Council Resolutions clearly stated North Korea’s ballistic missile program and its launch. China is opposed to the moves of DPRK relating to the missile launch as it violates UN Security Council resolutions.” Chinese President Xi Jinping invited 29 world leaders and representatives from 130 countries to Beijing for the international summit on the One Belt One Road (the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-century Maritime Silk Road.) Beijing showed signs of discomfort about North Korea’s provocations on the opening day of Belt and Road Forum.
Investment banks raise Korea’s growth target for 2 consecutive months
Global investment banks have increased their targets for Korea’s 2017 economic growth for two consecutive months. The development comes amid continuous expansion of the nation’s export and growing corporate investment coupled with expectations for the new Moon Jae-in administration’s economic stimulus measure through a large-scale extra budget. According to the International Finance Center on Sunday, Korea’s growth target for this year projected by 10 global investment banks including Barclays, Goldman Sachs, and Morgan Stanley came to 2.6 percent on average as of end-April, which is a 0.1 percent increase from 2.5 percent projected at the end of March.
Tenacious Kim Ji-young wins first KLPGA victory
Kim Ji-young couldn’t hide her disappoint when she missed a 2 meter birdie putt on the 18th hole. However, galleries packed into the golf course applauded. She didn’t realize that she won the game until her colleagues rushed her to send flowers for celebration. “I thought I need a par to win the game," Kim said. "I didn’t look at the leaderboard (graded list) to stay focused. I was not nervous.” The 21-year-old golfer did not lose her focus during the game and finally took the victory at Korean Ladies Professional Golf Association (KLPGA) tour for the first time.
Solo Wedding Shots All the Rage Among Single Women
The panda-like reluctance among Koreans to pair up and mate has given rise to a bizarre fashion for single women to arrange "wedding" photos of themselves alone in a bridal gown.
According to wedding industry insiders, women who have no interest in getting married spend between W300,000 and several million on a shoot depending on their choice of a studio, wedding gown and beauty salon (US$1=W1,130). Some even spirit themselves away on a single honeymoon to tourist attractions like Jeju Island and Okinawa, Japan for the shoot.
Moon Hints at Scrapping Sex Slavery Victims Deal with Japan
President Moon Jae-in spoke over the telephone on Thursday with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and hinted at scrapping an agreement for compensating the Korean victims of sex slavery during World War II. In the 25-minute conversation, the two leaders agreed to meet in the near future and cooperate closely in dealing with North Korea's nuclear and missile threats, Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Yoon Young-chan told reporters. But Moon and Abe did not see eye to eye on a controversial deal struck with ex-President Park Geun-hye on compensating the Korean women who were forced to serve as sex slaves for Japanese troops during World War II.
President Moon declares era of zero irregular employment at public institutions
President Moon Jae-in made what may be called his first step toward implementing his election pledge of having public institutions lead the way in creating good jobs by announcing plans to “usher in an era of zero irregular work in the public sector during my term” during a May 12 visit to the Incheon International Airport Corporation.
In addition to government irregular employment policy, the statement could also been seen as announcing that the methods of assessing public institution management are in for a qualitative change.
After hearing, mandatory recall issued for 240,000 more Hyundai and Kia vehicles
In the end, a mandatory recall order was given to Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors, which had resisted the recall recommended by South Korea’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport. This was the first time the South Korean government has forced a local automaker to issue a recall, instead of the automaker undertaking the recall voluntarily. With a recall of 240,000 vehicles added to the 170,000 vehicles already recalled because of the Theta 2 engine, Hyundai and Kia have suffered a major blow to their quality control and their corporate reputations.
China invites South Korean government delegation to Belt and Road Summit
President Moon Jae-in has decided to send a government delegation led by Minjoo Party lawmaker Park Byeong-seok to China’s Belt and Road Summit. The envoy’s visit to China signals the restoration of South Korea and China’s diplomatic channels, which had been all but severed by the dispute over the THAAD missile defense system. “The envoy is being sent in line with a request made by Chinese President Xi Jinping during a phone call with President Moon Jae-in yesterday,” said Yoon Young-chan, Senior Secretary to the President for Public Relations, during a press briefing at the Blue House on May 12. Previously, China had not invited South Korea to the forum because of the impeachment and the THAAD dispute.
North missile test is ‘grave threat,’ says Moon Jae-in
North Korea fired a ballistic missile early Sunday morning that flew about 700 kilometers (435 miles) before landing in the East Sea, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement on Sunday.
The missile launch was the first since President Moon Jae-in was inaugurated last Wednesday, replacing impeached leader Park Geun-hye, who is jailed awaiting a corruption trial. It came just hours before China, North Korea’s greatest ally, kicked off a two-day economic forum highlighting President Xi Jinping’s so-called Belt and Road Initiative, which focuses on connectivity and cooperation mainly between China and the rest of Eurasia.
President makes more appointments to Blue House
President Moon Jae-in on Sunday named former three-term lawmaker Jun Byung-hun as his senior secretary for political affairs, who coordinates policy issues between the presidential office and the National Assembly, a daunting job given the current parliamentary landscape. The newly elected president also appointed former Seoul city government official Ha Seung-chang as senior secretary for social innovation and Kim Su-hyun, a veteran of the Roh Moo-hyun administration, as senior secretary for social affairs.
SK invests in self-driving car tech
Another Korean conglomerate has taken a deeper interest in autonomous vehicles, following the leads of Hyundai Motor, Samsung and Naver. SK Telecom is teaming up with U.S.-based Nvidia to develop core technology for self-driving cars, according to the leading Korean mobile carrier Sunday. Based in California, Nvidia developed the world’s first graphics processing unit, which can manipulate computer graphics and process images, including 3-D images. The company manufactures high-tech GPUs for autonomous vehicles based on its technology in deep learning and artificial intelligence.
LIG Nex1 contributes to flood relief in Colombia
On March 31, LIG Nex1 delivered $20,000 to the Colombian Embassy in Seoul to support recovery efforts in the southwestern region of Putumayo after heavy rains caused severe flooding and landslides. The disaster led to the deaths of 262 people, including 43 children, and damaged the homes of some 500 families. The president of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos, declared a state of emergency. As a defense contractor, LIG Nex1 has focused its charitable activities on veterans. The company has established a partnership with Seoul National Cemetery, hired veterans to its workforce, improved dormitories for children of veterans and offered scholarships to children of military service members who have died on duty.
First Step Toward Peace on the Korean Peninsula: President Moon Calls U.S., Chinese and Japanese State Leaders
President Moon Jae-in spoke with U.S. President Donald Trump, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe over the phone on May 10-11 and exchanged views on key diplomatic and security issues. Moon confirmed the basic position of the other countries on North Korea's nuclear program, the ROK-US alliance, the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system, and the South Korea-Japan agreement on the comfort women and pledged cooperation on North Korea's nuclear issue.
A President Who Understands Lesbians
Many people are now willingly giving advice and making suggestions hoping that the nineteenth president, Moon Jae-in will successfully lead this nation. At such a time, I recall a manifesto-like poem by Zoe Leonard, a feminist artist and an activist for minority rights, "I Want a President." I hope that President Moon Jae-in has read this poem and tries to understand its meaning. Zoe Leonard wrote this poem in support of Eileen Myles, a female candidate who ran in the 1992 U.S. presidential election, which turned out to be a race among three alpha males뾉eorge Bush, Bill Clinton and Ross Perot. The poem begins with Leonard's wish, "I want a dyke for president."
The Korea Economic Daily (http://english.hankyung.com/)
North Korea's Kim Jong-un Tests South's "Moonshine" Policy
North Korea fired a ballistic missile only four days after South Korean President Moon Jae-in took office on May 10. Mr. Moon called a National Security Council meeting 41 minutes after the launch. In the meeting, he said, "The latest provocation by the north is in violation of the United Nations Security Council resolution and a serious challenge to peace and security of the Korean Peninsula." He added, "Even though my government leaves a possibility of dialog with the regime, we will respond sternly so that the north won't misjudge our intentions."
All Top 3 Convenience Stores Set to Sell Craft Beers
Korea's top-three convenience store chains have jumped into a draft beer war as GS25 and 7Eleven recently decided to sell draft beers in their stores after CU began doing so since last month. These moves are in response to the rising number of beer drinkers who drink alone at home. According to industry sources on May 14, GS25 will start selling freshly brewed craft beer from Goose Island, a Chicago-based craft beer supplier, from late this month. Established in 1988, Goose Island is one of the craft beer pioneers and enjoys popularity for its Honker's Ale and other five Classic lines, as well as the high-end beers like Juliet, Gillian, and Sofie. GS2 will start selling Honker's Ale, 312 Urban Wheat Ale, and Goose IPA only for the time being.
Korea's Youth Jobless Rate Continues to Rise
Among major countries worldwide, Korea turned out to be the only country where youth jobless rate increased in the first quarter of this year. In contrast to the worsening of the youth jobless rate in Korea, those of the United States, Europe, and Japan marked an improvement. Only four countries, including Korea, saw their youth jobless rate worsen compared to a quarter ago, among OECD countries. According to OECD on May 14, Korea's jobless rate for those aged from 15 to 24 stood at 10.0 percent in the first quarter of this year, up 0.1 percentage point from 9.9 percent in the fourth quarter of last year.
Half of Listed Firms See Share Prices Down Despite Sky-high KOSPI
Abouta half of listed companies in Korea saw their share prices decline this year.Despite the benchmark KOSPI exceeding the 2,300 level and the KOSDAQ indexrenewing its annual high, more than 45 percent of those listed in the Koreanstock market suffered a decline in their share prices. Inother words, four out of ten Korean listed companies saw their stock prices declinethis year. In particular, the share prices of these companies were higher inthe KOSDAQ market, which is favored mainly by individual investors than atKOSPI market.
Korea's Cosmetics Firms Speed up Efforts to Ease China Risk
Korea'scosmetics exports for the period from April 1 to 20 suffered a negative year-on-yeargrowth of 2.6 percent, according to the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Energyon May 14. This was the first time for the nation's cosmetics exports to recorda negative year-on-year growth since January 2012. Theministry blamed the negative growth on the sharp decline of 5.6 percent in thenation's cosmetics shipments to China. In contrast, Korea's cosmetics shipmentsto other countries, including the United States, Japan and the ASEAN registereda double-digit growth of 62.1 percent, 38.7 percent, and 13.6 percent,respectively.
AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)
N. Korea test-fires ballistic missiles days after inauguration of new liberal government in Seoul
In an apparent bid to test the will of a new South Korean government, North Korea test-fired a ballistic missile into the sea Sunday in its first military provocation since President Moon Jae-in took office in Seoul just days ago. Moon chaired an emergency meeting of the National Security Council in the unground bunker of the presidential office and condemned the North's missile launch as a clear violation of UN resolutions and a grave threat to regional and international security.
NY Police Officers show great Kindness to Homeless Man
The city of Rome is a cozy little town located in north-central New York state. The town made headlines all over the news with Rome Police Department's acts of kindness to a homeless man named Bobby. According to the Facebook post on Rome PD's page, the officers had "some interactions with a man down on his luck, Bobby" and found out "he'd love a haircut and warm shower". The officers made Bobby's wish come true and some more on April 25. He was able to get "a haircut, a shave, a shower, and a whole new wardrobe of donated clothing."
Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
LG Elec shares extend rally on expectations for smartphone biz recovery
Shares of South Korean electronics giant LG Electronics Inc. hit its highest level in four years on Friday amid growing expectations for a long-awaited turnaround in the company’s mobile and communication (MC) division that has logged losses since 2015, eating away at the company’s overall profits. On Friday, shares of LG Electronics listed in Korea’s main bourse Kospi climbed 1.75 percent, or 1,400 won, from the previous trading day to end at 81,200 won, the highest since June 3, 2013 when they ended at 81,300 won.
S. Korea’s Hyundai and Kia forced to recall 238,000 cars
South Korea’s transport ministry has ordered Hyundai Motor Co. and its affiliate Kia Motors Corp. to recall 238,000 vehicles after concluding their 12 models have defects including faulty canisters and loose wheel nuts. It is the first mandatory recall order made by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport after Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors had raised an objection to the government recall order issued last month. The ministry held a hearing session on May 8 but rejected their objection. A total of five defects were confirmed in 12 models made by the two automakers.
Netmarble’s market cap hit $12 bn, taking crown in S. Korean game industry
South Korean mobile game company Netmarble Games Corp. debuted on Friday in the market’s second largest-ever initial public offering (IPO) became the nation’s largest game developer with its market value reaching 13.7 trillion won ($12 billion). Netmarble Games made its much-awaited debut on Seoul’s main bourse Kospi on Friday with its IPO price set at 157,000 won apiece and raised 2.7 trillion won. Its market capitalization after the IPO hit 13.7 trillion won, beating its rival NCSoft Corp. worth 7.7 trillion won. Its shares ended Friday at 162,000 won, 3.2 percent higher than IPO price.
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