The Korean daily media headlines and humor
Monday, June 12, 2017
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:
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What’s ticking in Korea today? Here is a quick roundup of important news stories from the major Korean news media today:
Pres. Moon Nominates 5 More Cabinet Ministers
President Moon Jae-in has nominated five new Cabinet ministers, including a new deputy premier and minister of education. Presidential spokesman Park Soo-hyun announced Sunday that Kim Sang-kon, a former superintendent of Gyeonggi Province Office of Education, has been tapped as the new education minister, who will double as a deputy prime minister. Song Young-moo, a former chief of naval operations and retired admiral, has been nominated to head the Defense Ministry. Ahn Kyong-whan, a professor emeritus of Seoul National University School of Law, has been tapped as the new justice minister while Kim Eun-kyung, a presidential secretary for sustainable development under former President Roh Moo-hyun, was named as the environment minister.
Pres. Moon to Give Address to Nation at National Assembly
President Moon Jae-in will give an address to the nation on Monday on the need to draw a supplementary budget for job creation. The presidential office said that Moon will deliver the address on state affairs at the National Assembly on Monday, his 34th day in office. The president is expected to urge parliament to pass the eleven-point-two trillion won extra budget plan, pointing at the country’s serious unemployment issue.
England Beats Venezuela to Win FIFA U-20 World Cup in S. Korea
England defeated Venezuela 1-0 to win the FIFA U-20 World Cup. At the final held at the Suwon World Cup Stadium on Sunday, forward Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored the winner in the first half, handing the European side its first ever title in the biennial football event. The South American team’s hopes for an equalizer were dashed when forward Adalberto Penaranda’s penalty kick in the 72nd minute was saved by English goalkeeper Freddie Woodman. England’s previous best in the U-20 World Cup was third place in 1993.
N. Korea on track for new missile test every 2.1 weeks: U.S. expert
North Korea could carry out a missile test every 2.1 weeks if the communist regime continues with such banned launches at the same pace it has done so far this year, a U.S. expert said. Troy Stangarone, senior director for congressional affairs at the Korea Economic Institute of America, came up with the statistical estimate after analyzing the number of North Korean missile launches since 2012 following North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's rise to power. "Since assuming leadership in North Korea, Kim Jong-un averaged 10.8 missile tests per year in the 2012-2016 period. Though, these numbers are driven up by the higher volume of tests in recent years," he said in an article posted on the KEI's The Peninsula website. In 2012 and 2013, North Korea conducted a total of eight missile tests, the expert said. If those initial years are excluded and only the more recent period where the rate of testing has increased are examined, the average is 15.3 tests per year in the 2014-2016 period, he said.
Belgian princess gets honorary citizenship from Seoul
Princess Astrid of Belgium will be granted an honorary citizenship from the city of Seoul, the city government said Monday. Princess Astrid arrived in Seoul on Saturday for a weeklong visit as a special envoy of the current monarch and her brother, King Philippe, with a group of 258 delegates to foster economic ties with South Korea. She will receive the certificate of honorary citizenship from Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon early Monday, according to the Seoul Metropolitan Government. The princess and the mayor will clinch an agreement aimed at boosting exchanges between Brussels and Seoul,
Dodgers' Ryu Hyun-jin hurt by long balls in shaky start
Hurt by long balls yet again, Ryu Hyun-jin of the Los Angeles Dodgers has barely avoided a loss in a shaky start. Ryu gave up three home runs against the Cincinnati Reds at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday (local time). Ryu was lifted for pinch hitter Franklin Gutierrez in the bottom fourth with the Dodgers trailing 4-2. The Dodgers' offense came alive after Ryu left the game and rallied for a 9-7 victory thanks to a six-run eighth. The four innings matched Ryu's shortest start of the season. He remained at 2-6 and has a 4.42 ERA after four earned runs in those four innings on six hits. He struck out five and walked none, while making 68 pitches, 49 of them for strikes.
The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
Moon nominates progressive ex-education superintendent for deputy PM
President Moon Jae-in on Sunday tapped a progressive former Gyeonggi Province education superintendent for the post of deputy prime minister and education minister. Along with Education Minister nominee Kim Sang-kon, the presidential office announced the nominations of four ministers, and four vice minister-level positions including that of the head of National Institute of Korean History. Other ministerial nominees include Ahn Kyong-whan for Ministry of Justice, Song Young-moo for Ministry of National Defense, Kim Eun-kyung for the Ministry of Environment, and Cho Dae-yop for the Ministry of Employment and Labor.
Can North Korea conduct first ICBM test within this year?
With North Korea successfully test-firing most of its advanced missiles revealed during the regime’s massive military parade on April 15, there is only one missile type left for the regime to finish its ultimate goal: an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of reaching the United States. Since the military parade, the North has launched a series of newly-introduced ballistic missiles with extended ranges, advanced engines and multiple platforms. Among them are the intermediate-range Hawsong 12, solid-fueled Pukguksong-2 and Scud-type missiles targeting US warships.
Moon to encourage job creation in first parliamentary speech
President Moon Jae-in is seeking to make a breakthrough in the stalled negotiations over his policy pledge for a supplementary budget for job creation and his appointment of Cabinet nominees this week.
On Monday, President Moon was to visit the National Assembly to give his first administrative policy speech to stress the need for 11.2 trillion won ($9.95 billion) to boost employment in the public sector. It will be the first time an incumbent president will address the parliament on a supplementary budget. The move comes as his pledge to create some 810,000 jobs in the public sector faces harsh criticism from the opposition parties.
UK's Theresa May pays heavy price for gamble
In the big book of political blunders, Theresa May's decision to hold a snap election to solidify her Brexit mandate will rank among the most memorable and the most unnecessary. The British prime minister was cruising along two months ago with a solid majority in Parliament and several years to run on her party's mandate. There was no need for her to put her position on the line, and she had said earlier that an election was not needed. But her party's huge lead in the opinion polls -- 20 percent in most cases -- made the prospect too tempting to pass up.
The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
KAIST 'most innovative university in Asia' for two straight years
The Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) has topped the "Asia-Pacific region's Most Innovative Universities" list for two consecutive years. Reuters announced the list after analyzing competencies of top 75 Asian universities from 2010 to 2015 in partnership with research firm Clarivate Analytics. Seoul National University came second, followed by Tokyo University, Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTEC) and Sungkyunkwan University. The list shows that Korean universities display high innovations among other Asian countries.
'Don't let racial discrimination continue in Korea'
An Indian student who ignited an online firestorm against a club in Seoul's multinational district of Itaewon with his experience of racial discrimination said it is sad that such discrimination still exists.
Kislay Kumar told The Korea Times that foreign residents here increasingly endured racial insults as part of their daily lives. The Sogang University student, who has lived here for two years, said the longer foreigners lived in Korea, the more pessimistic they became about combating racial discrimination."Many of my friends have experienced small or big discrimination in Korea," Kumar said. "But the worst thing is that such discrimination has become so common. Expats are so pessimistic (about fighting discrimination), especially those who have lived here a long time."
Major blackout hits Seoul, Gyeonggi
A major blackout hit southwestern Seoul, Sunday, inconveniencing more than 190,000 households in the capital and southern Gyeonggi Province. According to the Korea Electric Power Corp. (KEPCO) and local governments, the blackout happened at 12:53 a.m. following a malfunction at the Yeongseo power substation in Gwangmyeong, and lasted almost two hours. KEPCO said emergency crews finished work at 1:15 p.m. to restore power through the nearby Sinyangjae substation.
Thai workers sold illegal drugs, police say
Police have arrested four Thai workers on suspicion of selling illegal drugs to prostitutes. According to Gwangju Metropolitan Police Agency, the four sold 13 grams of meth worth 13 million won ($11,500) to women at "massage parlors" they contacted through a chatting app in April. The four are also suspected of taking the drugs. Police believe other people are involved.
Europe enjoys golden age of female politicians
Europe is now in the golden age of female politicians. From German Chancellor Angela Merkel, British Prime Minister Theresa May to female two tops, not a few opposition parties have appointed female politicians as their leaders. Some 32 percent of the UK’s politicians are female, which brings the nation to be ranked at 46th in the world. European nations are rapidly moving to strike a balance of male and female lawmakers at 50 to 50. Female lawmakers have already accounted for more than 40 percent in Sweden, Finland, Iceland and Spain, while latter half of 30 percent women are working as politician in countries such as Norway, Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands and Germany. The U.S. with congresswomen at 19.1 percent is ranked at 101 in the world.
Wristband vibrates 1 second after drowsy driving
A 45-passenger bus driver wearing sunglasses closed his eyes when the speedometer mark exceeds 50 kilometers per hour while driving on the road for comprehensive testing at the Korea Automotive Testing & Research Institute under the Korea Transportation Safety Authority in Hwaseong city on last Friday. A special micro camera is installed between the steering wheel and dashboard swiftly analyzed the driver’s face, and a warning message was sent with vibration on the watch shaped wristband worn by the driver. It all took a second after the driver closed his eyes.
LG Chem to exclusive supply desalination filters to Egyptian plants
LG Chem will exclusively supply reverse osmosis (RO) filters to the largest seawater desalination plants in Egypt. The company announced on Sunday that it has been selected as a sole supplier of RO filters to the desalination plants of 300,000 tons that Metito, a global water treatment company, is constructing in El Galalah and Port Said, Egypt. The total capacity could provide some one million people with fresh water every day. LG Chem will begin the supply of its products from the second half of this year.
Ostapenko becomes 'unseeded' WTA Champion at France Open
"Her life is like this: everything very fast. She hits fast, walks fast, talks fast."
It was an introduction made by 35-year-old coach Anabel Medina Garrigues of Latvian tennis player Jeļena Ostapenko (ranked 47th) who recently won the women's single at the 2017 France Open and is gaining wide attention as the new cinderella on the tennis courts. The 20-year-old won a losing game with the final score of 2-1 (4-6, 6-4, 6-3) to world's fourth-ranking Rumanian player Simona Halep at the finals held at Roland Garros on Sunday. As her coach said, Ostapenko is fast at everything once she makes up her mind.
Massive Numbers of Franchise Outlets Shut Down Every Year
The franchise craze seems to be headed for an ignoble end as the identikit outlets shut down left, right and center amid intense competition. According to the Fair Trade Commission, 41,699 franchise stores opened last year but 24,059 or the equivalent of more than half closed down. That boils down to 114 franchise outlets opening and 66 closing every day. The Chosun Ilbo tabulated the losses from store closures based on FTC data and found that more than W2 trillion is lost every year (US$1=W1,125).
Moon Enjoys Record Approval Ratings
President Moon Jae-in is enjoying the highest-ever approval rating of any Korean president in his or her first month in office. A Gallup Korea poll on Thursday put him at 84 percent. Supporters are impressed by his administration's transparency (18 percent), staff appointments (10 percent), overall performance (eight percent) and achievement of campaign pledges (seven percent). Moon beat the previous record of 83 percent garnered by Kim Young-sam in 1993. But a poll by Realmeter on Monday put Moon's approval rating at 78.1 percent, down six points from late May.
Seoul Sees Sharpest Rise in Apartment Prices in Korea
Apartment prices in Seoul grew at the fastest clip in the country in the first half of this year, surpassing even the booming southern port city of Busan. Until early May, Busan still had the highest growth in apartment prices, but Seoul apartment prices have grown at a faster pace since the election of President Moon Jae-in. According to property information service Real Estate 114 on Thursday, Seoul apartment prices had soared 2.04 percent as of June 2, compared to 1.89 percent in the first six months of last year.
South Korea says no fundamental changes coming to THAAD deployment
“The government has no intention to make fundamental changes to the content of our agreements made in terms of the South Korea-US alliance,” Blue House National Security Chief Chung Eui-yong said on June 9, in regard to the deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense system. “We as the government are keenly aware of the nuclear missile threat from North Korea and intend to handle the THAAD deployment in a principled manner,” Chung said at a briefing on the afternoon of June 9 at the Blue House. “The decision to deploy THAAD was made in order to protect South Korea and the US Forces Korea from a mounting threat from North Korea, so the decision will not be thought of lightly just because of an administration change. We will continue to consult closely with the US,” Chung added.
Rifts developing in US views on THAAD deployment in South Korea
There is a gradually increasing atmosphere of discomfort in the US in regard to the position South Korea’s new administration takes on the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense system. While the US administration has demonstrated a strong desire to understand South Korea’s position, a gap in opinions has been made evident by the public opposition of a few US lawmakers. When asked at a regular briefing on June 8 if the South Korean government’s decision to conduct an environmental impact assessment was a disappointment, US State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert said she would not characterize the situation that way, but that the circumstances surrounding THAAD were very important to the US government.
Can “Moonshine” bring an improvement to inter-Korean relations?
A new word has popped up in early predictions for President Moon Jae-in’s North Korea policy approach: “Moonshine.” The expectation is that Moon’s policy approach will follow along the lines of the Sunshine Policies of former Presidents Kim Dae-jung (1998-2003) and Roh Moo-hyun (2003-08). One month has passed since the new administration took office, but the “moonlight” in inter-Korean relations has remained faint. It’s not that the administration in Seoul has done nothing. Over the past weeks, it has cautiously looked for way to restore ties, granting approval several times for private groups to contact North Korea. Its aim is to get the ball rolling with inter-Korean relations at the levels of humanitarian assistance and private interchange.
Moon tabs reformists for education, justice, defense
President Moon Jae-in on Sunday confirmed his intention to overhaul the country’s education, justice and defense sectors by appointing as new ministers reformists with no ties to the respective ministries.
Moon nominated Kim Sang-kon, former head of the Gyeonggi Provincial Education Office, as the deputy prime minister for social affairs and education minister, said Park Soo-hyun, presidential spokesman. Ahn Kyong-whan, former chairman of the National Human Rights Commission, was named to head the Ministry of Justice. Former Navy Chief of Staff Song Young-moo was nominated to become the minister of national defense.
Blackout hits Gyeonggi and Seoul, lasting 20 minutes
Several areas in southern and western Seoul and the neighboring cities of Gwangmyeong and Siheung, both in Gyeonggi, were paralyzed by a sudden blackout Sunday afternoon that lasted for about 20 minutes due to a malfunction in the Yeongseo Electric Power Substation. No casualties were reported. Seoul’s fire authority said it responded to 54 calls from people trapped in elevators. Roughly 300,000 homes were affected in Gwangmyeong, Siheung, and the Seoul districts of Guro, Geumcheon and Gwanak.
Live-poultry exchanges banned for two weeks
The government is banning the distribution of all live poultry for the next two weeks in the hopes of preventing the avian flu outbreak, which has already affected 15 farms nationwide, from spreading further.
The Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs on Sunday has decided to step up its ban on live poultry exchanges to all the places that treat live birds, whether chickens or ducks, until June 25. On June 5, the government barred the buying and selling of poultry at traditional markets and restaurants that butcher the birds themselves.
LG Electronics creates robot, AI research centers
LG Electronics created research centers that will focus on developing technologies for artificial intelligence and robots earlier this month. The electronics company said on Sunday that it is preparing to take the lead in the global market ahead of the fourth industrial revolution. The AI Lab will build a platform that will study data that the company’s customers use, such as weather, and use the platform to improve its products, including smart home appliances, mobile phones, TVs and auto parts. The Advanced Robotics Lab will work on developing leading technologies for intelligent robots.
The KyungHyangShinmoon (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Despite a Stern Warning, the Possibility of Talks Not Given Up
President Moon chaired a National Security Council (NSC) meeting for the first time since his inauguration to take actions against the launch of land-to-ship missiles by North Korea on June 8, and sent a firm message to the North. While he reconfirmed the principle of driving ‘sanctions and dialogues at the same time,’ he also stressed that there will be firm actions to any North Korean military provocations. Since cruise missiles use jet engines, they are considered to be relatively less threatening compared to ballistic missiles that use rockets. That is why Cheong Wa Dae has not taken any action against the launch of cruise missiles with an NSC meeting chaired by the president
Failure by Taking Too Much Time Was a Lesson Learned from the Participatory Government: Appointments at a Lightening Speed
With the Moon Jae-in administration making some massive demotionary appointments of high-ranking prosecutors on June 8, the reshuffle of the prosecution initiated by the so-called ‘dinner with cash envelopes’ is advancing rapidly. Circles in and out of the prosecution interpret this as a sign of strong will by President Moon Jae-in: he is determined to not repeat the same failure to reform the prosecution as in the case of the participatory government, and he will start the reform based on an extensive shake-up of the organization.
"Vietnam War Veterans, Miners Sent to Germany, and Young Female Workers in Cheonggyecheon Are All Patriots"
President Moon Jae-in's speech on June 6 Memorial Day was an answer to the question, "What is patriotism?" President Moon answered by arguing that patriotism was not something "that existed only in the battlefield for independence and in defense of our homeland." He defined patriotism as "everything that made Korea what it is today." The Taegeukgi (South Korean flag), which was in the arms of the independence fighters, was also present on top of many plateaus during the Korean War, just as it had been present when the nation sent its miners and nurses to Germany and when the citizens fought for democracy in the May 18 Democratic Uprising and the June pro-democracy movement in 1987.
The Korea Economic Daily (http://english.hankyung.com/)
Naver Hits Record High...Market Cap Surpasses 30 Tril. Won
Naver has opened up an era of 30 trillion won in market value after hitting a record high on June 9. Some analysts predicted that the company's market capitalization may overtake that of Hyundai Motor (35,244.2 billion won) any time soon. The online portal's stock was closed at 960,000 won, up by 70,000 won (7.87%), hitting a record-high level. It has been eight months since it rose above the 900,000-won level after September 29 last year (903,000 won). On the day, foreign investors led the market by net-buying the shares worth 10,076 million won, continuing the rally for six consecutive trading days.
Gas Stations in Crisis...Due to Gov't-Supported Low-cost Filling Stations
The nation's gas stations are going out of business in droves due to excessive competition and increasingly declining oil prices. There are more "ghost" filling stations than ever before on major local roads. Many gasoline station owners complained about government-supported low-cost service stations for causing the current state of affairs. According to the Korea Oil Station Association, the number of petrol stations shrank to 12,010 as of the end of last year from 12,901 in 2011. Last year alone, 763 locations were closed for business while only 66 were opened for business.
Volvo Truck Korea Intends to Keep Top Position in the Future
Volvo Truck has kept its leading position in the Korean market for more than ten years since 2007. Last year, its sales figure was 2,600, far ahead of the runner-up MAN Truck (1,500). Kim Young-jae, president of Volvo Truck, said, "We have kept running for years thinking about customer service and nothing else." The company established a 24-hour customer call center in 2002, kicked off a fuel economy competition in 2007, and launched nighttime repair services (2016).
AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)
The Seoul Agreement on Climate Change
Korea has found itself facing a paradox that cannot be easily resolved as the Trump administration insists on going forward with the deployment of the THAAD anti-missile system in the face of overwhelming Chinese opposition. Yet the decision of Trump administration to leave the Paris Climate Accord has turned the world on its head and offers an opportunity for Korea to find common ground with China and to push forward as a world leader on environmental issues in a manner that will find great sympathy with a large number of Americans.
Israel Palestinians Blockade
A Palestinian protester aims his slingshot as he throws stones during clashes between Israeli troops and Palestinian protesters near the border, between Israel and The Gaza Strip, in the east Jabalia refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, 09 June 2017 (issued 10 June 2017). One Palestinian was shot dead by Israeli troops and four others were injured following a protest against the Israeli blockade.
Suspected North Korean drone found to have crashed across border
A suspected North Korean drone mounted with a surveillance camera was found to have crashed into a mountain, military authorities in Seoul said as the two Koreas were locked in brisk espionage activities along the heavily guarded border. Military investigators retrieved the drone Friday in the northeastern border town of Inje on the report from a local resident, the South's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said, adding the drone with a short tail wing was 1.8 meters long and 2.4 meters wide. An initial field investigation found that the drone is suspected of being sent by North Korea because it is similar to one retrieved in 2014 on the front-line island of Baengnyeong near the disputed Yellow Sea border, the JCS said. A 62-year-old man told Yonhap News Agency that he discovered the azure-painted drone during his walk Thursday in a mountainous area.
Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
Samsung Electronics to post all-time high quarterly OP in Q2
Samsung Electronics Co. is estimated to have posted all-time high operating income in the second quarter helped by rebound in memory chip and display markets as well as robust sales of its new flagship smartphone Galaxy S8. According to Seoul-based market data provider FnGuide Friday, the market consensus for the Korean tech giant’s operating profit in the April – June period is way above 12 trillion won ($10.67 billion) and little below 13 trillion won – 12.9 trillion won – and sales 58.2 trillion won.
S. Korea’s exports dip 12.2% in the first 10 days of June
South Korea’s exports dipped 12.2 percent in June on year snapping a seven-month-long winning streak to reach $12.2 billion in the first 10 days, according to the Korea Customs Service Sunday.
The country has posted seventh straight months of growth in outbound shipments from November to last month, which was the longest winning streak in five years and a half. Daily shipment also dropped 5.9 percent to $1.74 billion from $1.85 billion a year earlier.
S. Korea’s household debt ratio against GDP highest among emerging nations for 14 years
South Korea ranks the highest among emerging economies in the ratio of household debt against its gross domestic product (GDP) for the 14th consecutive year. According to the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) Sunday, Korea’s household debt amounted to 92.8 percent of its GDP last year, highest among 18 emerging nations. The unrespectable rank was followed by Malaysia with 70.3 percent, Thailand with 70.2 percent and Hong Kong with 67.7 percent.
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