The Korean daily media headlines and humor
Monday, June 26, 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:
Very Respectfully Yours
Korea Post Media
An exclusive interview with Ambassador Rodolfo Solano Quiros of Costa Rica in Seoul
‘President Moon Jae well known in Costa Rica amid high expectations
of increased bilateral cooperation, exchanges’
Ambassador Rodolfo Solano Quiros of Costa Rica in Seoul said that President Moon Jae-in is very well known in Costa Rica for his active involvement in the promotion of relations and cooperation between Korea and Costa on various occasions, especially in the course of the official state visit of the late former President Roh Moo-hyun to Costa Rica in 2005.
Speaking at an exclusive interview with The Korea Post media on June 22, 2017 conducted by Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of the media, Ambassador Solano Quiros stated that there was much room for substantially increased cooperation and exchange between the two countries in the economic, trade and various other areas. For further details, please visit: www.koreapost.com.
Thank you, Madam, the photo really does justice to you!
And I am sure that our readers would greatly appreciate seeing our Who’s Who among the Spouses of the Ambassadors!
Also, Excellency, do a favor to the Madam, and introduce her wonderful picture to the readers of The Korea Post media!
What’s ticking in Korea today? Here is a quick roundup of important news stories from the major Korean news media today:
Confirmation Hearings Scheduled for Six Cabinet Nominees This Week
The National Assembly will hold confirmation hearings for President Moon Jae-in’s picks for six Cabinet members this week. National Tax Service Director nominee Han Seung-hee will face the parliamentary confirmation committee on Monday followed by Defense Minister nominee Song Young-moo and Agriculture Minister nominee Kim Yung-rok on Wednesday. Hearings for Kim Sang-kon, nominee for education minister and deputy prime minister for social affairs, and Unification Minister nominee Cho Myoung-gyon are scheduled for Thursday. The hearing for Labor Minister nominee Cho Dae-yop will follow on Friday.
'Moon, Trump Should Narrow Differences on N. Korea in the Summit'
United States experts on Korea affairs have suggested that President Moon Jae-in and U.S. President Donald Trump narrow their differences on North Korea and build ties in the upcoming summit.
Ken Gause, a research analyst at CNA, a nonprofit research organization in the United States said that the relations between Seoul and Washington are at a critical point due to their new leaders’ different policies on Pyongyang. Gause said that in order to maintain their alliance, Moon and Trump should put their heads together to decide on what issues they will focus on at the summit. Robert Manning, a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, a Washington-based think tank, said that the summit is an important meeting that would define the relations of the two allies.
Nation Marks 67th Anniversary of Korean War
A ceremony to commemorate the 67th anniversary of the start of the Korean War was held at Jamsil Gymnasium in southern Seoul Sunday morning. The event was attended by some five-thousand people including government officials, military commanders, Korean War veterans and citizens. At the ceremony, Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon said that the government will ensure that those who dedicated themselves to the country will receive respectful treatment.
U.S. senators call on Trump to use summit with S. Korea to find way to quicken full THAAD deployment
A bipartisan group of U.S. senators have called on President Donald Trump to use the upcoming summit with South Korea President Moon Jae-in to reaffirm the firmness of the alliance and to expedite a full deployment of the THAAD missile defense system. A total of 18 senators, led by Sens. Cory Gardner (R-CO) and Bob Menendez (D-NJ), made the request in a joint letter to Trump on Friday. The letter came after a separate group of 19 senators introduced a resolution welcoming Moon's visit. The resolution and the letter underscore the high interest the United States has in Moon's summit with Trump set for Thursday and Friday. "We ask you to offer a firm assurance to President Moon that the bonds of our historic alliance are unbreakable and that the U.S. is fully committed to our defense treaty obligations with South Korea," the letter said, according to a full text released by Gardner's office.
S. Korean Ryu So-yeon captures 2nd LPGA win of 2017
South Korean golfer Ryu So-yeon has picked up her second LPGA win of the season in Arkansas. The world No. 3 claimed the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship at Pinnacle Country Club in Rogers, Arkansas, on Sunday (local time) with a three-round total of 18-under 195. Ryu shot a two-under 69 in the final round to set a tournament record in relation to par, and beat fellow South Korean Amy Yang and Moriya Jutanugarn of Thailand by two strokes.
Moon's rating falls for 2nd straight week amid disputes over personnel choices
President Moon Jae-in's approval rating dropped last week for the second consecutive week amid disputes over his personnel choices and his policy adviser's security remarks, a survey showed Monday. In the survey conducted from last Monday through Friday by local pollster Realmeter, Moon's support was tallied at 74.2 percent, down 1.4 percentage points from a week earlier. Those who disapproved of his job performance made up 18.6 percent, up 1.2 percentage points, while 7.1 percent said they were unsure or refused to answer. Last week, opposition parties criticized Moon's special adviser Moon Chung-in's remarks over the idea of downsizing South Korea-U.S. military exercises in return for North Korea's nuclear freeze. The Yonsei University professor later said the idea was from his "scholarly belief."
The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
Trump, fury, misunderstanding drive THAAD protest
On Saturday afternoon, thousands of South Koreans took to the streets to protest against the deployment of a US anti-missile system here, struggling to penetrate thick lines of police and besiege the US Embassy in downtown Seoul. An estimated 3,000 people chanted in unison “Retract the deployment of THAAD” and “THAAD out. Peace in.” Some were carrying placards reading “Koreans Hate THAAD” or “No THAAD, No Trump.” They were accusing Washington of “forcing” Seoul to station a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense battery here, which they say caters only to US interests while driving a wedge between South Korea and China.
9 dead, 28 missing after tourist boat sinks in Colombia
Nine people were dead and 28 missing after a tourist ferry packed with around 170 passengers for the holiday weekend capsized Sunday on a reservoir near the Colombian city of Medellin, officials said. A major rescue effort involving Colombia's air force and firefighters from nearby cities was looking for survivors at the Guatape reservoir where the four-story El Almirante boat sank. As it went down, a flotilla of recreational boats and jet skis rushed to the scene to pull people from the vessel and deliver them safely to the shore, avoiding an even deadlier tragedy.
Strong scientific research underpins biotech boom in San Diego
What if we could simply take a protein-control pill to get in sync with our circadian rhythm, curing the dreaded symptoms of jet lag once and for all? How about reversing the natural aging process -- literally becoming younger -- via genetic modification processes? These are just some scenarios that could one day become a reality through ongoing research at the Salk Institute of Biological Studies in San Diego, California, one of the key players underpinning the city’s booming biotechnology sector. Founded in 1960 by Jonas Salk, the developer of the world’s first polio vaccine, the Salk Institute is one of the city’s most influential life sciences research bodies, alongside the Scripps Research Institute and the University of California, San Diego.
The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
FTC chief mulls punishment on Google, Facebook
The Korean government is considering punitive measures against Google and Facebook for their alleged unfair business practices here, Fair Trade Commission (FTC) Chairman Kim Sang-jo said Sunday.
Kim accused the U.S. tech giants of stifling competition and monopolizing customer information by using their dominant market power. "They do not pay any costs for sweeping data and using local network systems — established by taxpayers' money here," Kim said.
Thai students 'molested, exploited' during internships in South Korea
The Thai government is investigating claims that eight students from the Southeast Asian country were sexually harassed and exploited during internships in South Korea. The Chiangrai College of Agriculture and Technology has also set up a fact-finding committee. Thailand's English daily The Nation reported the allegations on June 16. The students -- five males and three females -- started their internships at an unidentified farm here "a few months ago," according to the report. It said the students, aged 16-22, filed a joint complaint with the Thai embassy in Seoul and the Thai government's complaints center early this month.
Sanctions-only approach cannot change North Korea
A sanctions-only approach will not resolve the issue of North Korea's nuclear program, and both pressure and dialogue should be applied at the same time, experts on the Korea issue said. With South Korean President Moon Jae-in set to have a summit with U.S. President Donald Trump from June 29 to 30, they said Moon's step-by-step approach and attempts for talks and negotiations may produce more chances to move the issue forward. Ken E. Gause, director of the International Affairs Group at CNA, a nonprofit research and analysis organization based in Arlington, Va., said a balanced strategy between pressure and engagement can lead to traction.
Hanjin builds highest skyscraper in West Coast
Hanjin Group has built up a new landmark in the West Coast of the U.S., by recreating an old hotel located in central Los Angeles. The city also welcomed an investment over 1 trillion won with tax exemption, and was named as a new best practice for bilateral economic cooperation as the two nation leaders will meet on Wednesday. Hanjin Group announced it has held an opening ceremony for the "Wilshire Grand Center" located between Wilshire and Figueroa boulevards on Friday. The event participants included Hanjin Group Chairman Cho Yang-ho, Korean Air CEO Cho Won-tae, and AC Martin CEO Chris Martin.
N.K. rejects Moon’s offer for single team for Olympics in 2 hours
President Moon Jae-in proposed to North Korea that the two Koreas form a single team for the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea. President Moon expressed his strong commitment to seek resumption of inter-Korean dialogue through sports exchange while at the same time joining international sanctions against the Stalinist country. However, Pyongyang effectively rejected Moon’s offer in just two hours.
Park Tae-hwan tops 200-meter freestyle at Sette Colli Trophy in Rome
Expectations are high, as possibilities of the "two-horse carriage" is about to be realized in the Korean men's freestyle swimming. Park Tae-hwan beat competitive contenders and grabbed his second gold medal at an international swimming event before the FINA World Aquatics Championships to be held in Budapest in July. On Sunday, Park finished first at the 200-meter freestlye race at Sette Colli Trophy held at Stadio del Nuoto in Rome, with the time of 1:46:89. He was way ahead of the British Nicholas Granger (1:48:30) and Duncan Scott (1:48:47).
Overturned oil tanker explodes in Pakistan, killing 123
An overturned oil tanker exploded on Sunday on a highway in Pakistan, leaving at least 135 people dead and injuring more than 130. The explosion came as nearby villagers rushed to the scene in an attempt to collect leaking fuel, increasing casualties. According to CNN and Pakistan's Geo TV, the oil tanker turned over and fell off the road, as the driver lost control and crashed on the highway outside Bahawalpur in eastern Pakistan. Highway police could not stop villagers racing to collect the leaking fule with pots in their hands when the fire erupted. The fire soon spread to six other vehicles and 75 motorcycles. Witnesses said some of the villagers who rushed to the scene were smoking.
Half of Single Households Are Fathers Living Alone
Some 60 percent of the one-person households in Korea are actually married people with children, according to Statistics Korea on Tuesday, and four in 10 are over 50. This is due to a growing number of fathers living apart from their wives and children because they work somewhere else and senior citizens living alone after their spouses die. There are 5.28 million one-person households in Korea, 169,000 more than last year, accounting for a whopping 27.8 percent of total households as of 2016. But 59.1 percent or 3.12 million are in fact married people.
Men Still Earn Vastly More Than Women
Employed Koreans earn W3.29 million a month on average, but men make 1.7 times more money than women and staff in big businesses 1.8 times more than in small firms, according to a survey of 1,500 salaried workers by Statistics Korea on Thursday (US$1=W1,143). The median income amounts to only W2.41 million a month, but the average salary is W880,000 higher the medium income because of a small number of ultra-high earners. Baek Woong-ki at the state-run Korea Development Institute said, "As technology develops rapidly, managers and skilled workers reap most of the profits, while unskilled workers are left out."
Monsoon Season to Start Later Than Usual
The summer's first monsoon rains will fall in Jeju on Saturday, the Korea Meteorological Administration said on Thursday. This is four to five days later than normal. For the past 30 years, seasonal rainfall has started on the southern resort island on or around June 19-20. "The seasonal rain front is blocked from moving north by the North Pacific anticyclone, which is expanding to the east and west due to cold air in the upper atmosphere over the Korean Peninsula," a KMA official said. "This will likely delay this year's rainy season in the southern and central regions as well."
First citizens’ tribunal coming from Vietnam War victims of South Korean soldiers
Nguyen Thi Thanh recalls memories from over 50 years ago as she answered questions from South Korean attorneys in the conference room of a hotel in Da Nang, Vietnam, on the morning of June 3. She was asked, “After killing your aunt, did [the South Korean troops] all leave the village together?”, and said, “They stabbed my aunt, set fire to the body and burned the house down, and then they immediately left the village. My brother and I just managed to escape to a neighbor’s house. He crawled and I walked.”
President Moon to implement blind hiring to root out credentialism
The instructions given by President Moon Jae-in during a meeting with his senior secretaries and aides on June 22 for the public sector to start implementing blind hiring and employment quotas for talented people outside the Seoul area reflect his conviction about the need to address academic discrimination and the mistreatment of people from the countryside, Blue House officials said. Moon’s conviction about reforming the excessive emphasis placed on such regionalism and credentialism, these officials explained, developed as he experienced for himself the discrimination and disrespect faced by graduates of lesser-known universities from the provinces while he did legal work in the provinces despite having passed the bar exam and completing his studies at the Judicial Research and Training Institute with high marks.
Did the Trump administration change its North Korea policy?
“The US is ramping up its conditions for resuming dialogue with North Korea to mean denuclearization.” In the space of a week, this claim is already being treated as rock-solid truth. It’s also being cited as major evidence that the Moon Jae-in and Donald Trump administrations are out of sync in their North Korea policies. But while it’s not exactly “fake news,” it’s not very close to the truth either. It all started with a press briefing by US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert on June 15. Speaking at a commemorative ceremony for the 17th anniversary of the South-North Joint Declaration of June 15, 2000, Moon had said dialogue would be conditional on Pyongyang halting its nuclear testing and missile launches, and a question was asked about whether the Trump administration supported this.
Moon uses sports event to address North
President Moon Jae-in renewed calls for warmer ties with Pyongyang in his remarks at the World Taekwondo Championships in Muju County, North Jeolla on Saturday, inviting North Korea to participate in the PyeongChang Winter Olympics next year to “fulfill the Olympic spirit of harmony and promote world peace.” Moon’s latest outreach to Pyongyang came as a 36-member demonstration team from the International Taekwondo Federation (ITF), which included 32 North Korean nationals, touched down at Gimpo International Airport last Friday to participate in the World Taekwondo’s (formerly World Taekwondo Federation) World Taekwondo Championships.
FTC reviews Google and Facebook’s market dominance
The Korean Fair Trade Commission, under the new leadership of former civic activist Kim Sang-jo, seems to be targeting major global IT companies - Google and Facebook - in regard to collecting information that are considered key elements of the so-called fourth industrial revolution technologies. In his interview with Yonhap, Kim said the antitrust agency is “reviewing” whether there has been any monopolizing of information or violation of related antitrust regulations using the companies’ dominant influence in the market.
Anti-Thaad protesters surround U.S. Embassy
The U.S. Embassy in central Seoul was, for the first time in Korean history, briefly surrounded by protesters on Saturday afternoon, as they demanded the withdrawal of the U.S. military’s advanced antimissile system, deployed in the country earlier this year. The protest against the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (Thaad) system was the first major anti-U.S. rally since President Moon Jae-in took office in May. The event also came on the eve of Moon’s trip to Washington this week to hold his first summit with U.S. President Donald Trump.
‘Green’ is the new black in global fashion trends
Upcycling, or transforming recycled goods into a new product of higher quality, is a rising trend in the global retail industry. Zurich-based Freitag, who started making bags out of truck tarpaulins in 1993, is considered the creator of the movement. The upcycling movement among outdoor and sportswear brands in Korea was particularly active this month as World Environment Day falls on June 5 every year. These products are not only eco-friendly, but cater to consumers that seek functionality and good design.
The KyungHyangShinmoon (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Concerns of Conflicts Between South Korea and the U.S. Shake South Korean Government's Plans Against North Korea's Nuclear Program
The Moon Jae-in government's plans on North Korea's nuclear program are shaking from the start due to excessive concerns of conflicts with the U.S. and due to opposition from the conservatives. Some question whether the government will be able to properly discuss its two-step approach, from freezing current developments to discussions on denuclearization, with the U.S. In an interview with CBS, a U.S. broadcasting company on June 20, President Moon said that he had never mentioned scaling back the ROK-US joint military exercises during his election campaign. His words aimed to weaken the impact of the "Washington statement" made by his special adviser for unification, foreign affairs and security Moon Chung-in, a professor at Yonsei University.
"Neglected Procedures While Rushing the Placement of the THAAD System" President Moon Questions the Legitimacy of the Missile System
In an interview with Reuters, a British news agency, on June 22, President Moon Jae-in released the details of how the previous government rushed to place the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system sooner than planned and raised an issue with the procedures. He also demanded that China withdraw the measures taken in retaliation against the placement of the THAAD missiles. It appears the president is struggling to find a solution to the THAAD issue between the U.S. and China.
Freezing Nuclear Developments and Denuclearization
President Moon Jae-in personally shared his plans to resolve issues with North Korea including its nuclear program, for the first time in interviews with the U.S. media, such as CBS and the Washington Post released on June 21. And now all eyes are on the bilateral discussions at the South Korea-U.S. summit scheduled in Washington D.C. on June 29. Whether or not the Moon Jae-in government will be able to form a consensus with the Donald Trump administration on the direction for resolving North Korea‘s nuclear issue is expected to be the key topic at the upcoming summit.
The Korea Economic Daily (http://english.hankyung.com/)
No. of Vulnerable Households Unable to Pay back Debts Rises to 1.26 Mil.
A study said the number of vulnerable households that may be unable to pay back their debts has increased to 1.26 million. Of these, the number of high-risk families is in excess of 300,000. If short-term interest rates go up, the number may increase rapidly. In the "June 2017 Financial Stability Report" submitted by the Bank of Korea to the National Assembly on June 22, the figure rose from 1,097,000 at the end of March 2015 to 1,263,000 as of the end of March last year. This is an increase by 166,000 within a year. The balance of debt assumed by these households also bloated to 186.7 trillion won from 157.1 trillion won.
Internet-of-Things Tires Will Tell You When to Replace Them by 2020
Only three years from now in 2020, an era will open in which trillions of sensors are connected with each other so that devices can exchange data freely without human intervention. Automobile tires will also come equipped with sensors and tell the driver when to replace the tires depending on the degree of their wear and tear. George Bailey, managing director of the Center for Global Enterprise's Digital Supply Chain Institute, said on June 22 in a keynote speech in the 2017 Digital Business Forum held jointly with the Korea Economic Daily and A.T. Kearney at the Grand InterContinental Seoul Parnas, "Goodyear is now trying a new experiment in which marketing executives are playing the role of managing supply chains. The company is developing a system by which it finds out tire replacement cycles through sensors and uses the information for marketing purposes."
Hynix-Toshiba Alliance Would Reshape NAND Landscape
Back in the 1980s, Toshiba, one of front-runners among Japan's semiconductor companies, dominated the global market together with NEC and Hitachi. Although it washed its hands from DRAM chips in 2001 due to challenge posed by Korean chip makers, Toshiba still has industry-leading technologies in NAND flash chips. In contrast, SK Hynix has a weakness in the NAND area. This is why the share of NANDs in its memory chip business remained low at 25 percent last year, far lower than Samsung Electronics' 40 percent.
AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)
Dad bikes 14,000 miles to listen to his late daughter's heart beat one last time
Bill Connor received the heartbreaking yet best Father's Day gift he could ever ask for. He got to hear his late daughter's heart beat one last time. Connor lost his daughter Abigail in a freak accident that happened during a winter break vacation in Cancun, Mexico. Abigail and her brother "were found unconscious, face down" in the resort's pool. Unfortunately, she didn't pull through. Abigail was only 20 years old. Connor described his late daughter as a "Beautiful girl. Fun. Funny." She was in her junior year at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater majoring in Public Relations.
First cargo of US shale gas to arrive next month
The state-run Korea Gas Corp. (KOGAS) said Monday that the first cargo of US shale gas will arrive here next month. In 2012, KOGAS signed a deal with the Texas-based Cheniere to bring in 2.8 million tons of LNG annually for 20 years starting this year. The import of US shale gas is expected to curb potential pressure on South Korea from the US to reduce its trade surplus, KOGAS said. US President Donald Trump has dropped out of the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership sought after by his predecessor Barack Obama. For South Korea, Trump has vowed to fix or scrap the bilateral free trade deal, even calling it "horrible." He said that the deal has caused a massive trade deficit reaching 28 billion US dollars for the United States.
Six inmates got sentences reduced for saving guard's life
Six inmates got their sentences reduced after saving a life of a deputy who collapsed on duty in Polk County, Georgia. The guard collapsed while supervising a work detail at a cemetery with the inmates. The guard and six convicts got to know each other after working together for seven hours a day, five days a week according to WXIA-TV. June 19 was a hot and humid day in Georgia. The deputy who was dressed in the full gear including a bulletproof vest collapsed and the inmates came to his aid immediately. They removed his vest to ease his breathing and cooled him off. They then used his phone to call 911.
Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
Samsung Electronics to open home appliance factory in South Carolina, U.S.
South Korea’s electronics giant Samsung Electronics Co. will open its first U.S home appliance plant in Newberry, South Carolina, a move responding to U.S. President Donald Trump’s verbal threats of high import tariffs and a promise of benefits to companies helping his slogan of “Buy America and Hire America.” According to a high-level inside source on Thursday (local time in the U.S.), Samsung Electronics has decided to build its first home appliance plant in Newberry, South Carolina, the U.S. and it will make the official announcement on the site selection next week, at the earliest.
Ssangyong Cement Industrial takes over Daehan Cement
South Korea’s leading cement manufacturer Ssangyong Cement Industrial Co. acquired a full stake in Daehan Cement Co., the country’s largest blast-furnace slag cement producer at 265.0 billion won ($232.8 million). Ssangyong Cement Industrial said on Friday that it inked an agreement with local private equity fund Hahn & Company on purchasing a 100 percent stake, or 1,215,565 common shares, in Daehan Cement held by the private equity at 265.0 billion won. The deal also entitles the cement manufacturer to take over Daehan Slag Co. in which Daehan Cement owns a full stake. Daehan Cement produces slag cement that is used for making concrete pavement, structures and foundations. It posted nearly 240 billion won in sales and 47 billion won in earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) last year.
Korean Air partners with Delta through joint venture
South Korea’s flag carrier Korean Air Lines Co. signed a joint venture agreement with the world’s largest carrier Delta Air Lines Inc. on Friday, a move that is expected to help them not only strengthen their presence in Asia-Pacific routes but also beat back the growing threat from low-cost carriers (LCCs) in the long-haul market. The joint venture agreement - which was signed on Friday (local time) at Wilshire Grand Center in Downtown Los Angeles in California, the United States - will allow the two carriers to promote joint operations in about 24 Asia-Pacific routes connecting major destinations in Asia, possibly including Korea, Japan, and Hong Kong, and in the United States and to share costs and revenue. With the agreement, Korean Air and Delta Air are expected to have broader access to about 290 cities in the Americas and 80 cities in Asia that are currently operated by the two carriers.
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