The Korean daily media headlines and humor
Thursday, November 16, 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
What’s ticking in Korea today? Here is a quick roundup of important news stories from the major Korean news media today:
Dividend payouts to foreigners soar 20 pct this year
South Korean listed firms' dividend payouts to foreign investors jumped more than 20 percent in the first nine months of the year due mainly to increased earnings, central bank data showed Thursday.
Local listed companies paid foreign investors US$14.09 billion in dividends in the January-September period, up 20.5 percent from a year earlier, according to the data from the Bank of Korea. This is a record high for the first three quarters of any year, with the growth rate ranking as the highest since the 53.2 percent increase recorded in 2005.
Finance minister vows to ease cost burden of higher minimum wage
South Korea's finance minister said Wednesday that the government will make efforts to reduce increasing labor costs that small businesses would suffer due to the government-led hike in minimum wage.
President Moon Jae-in has pledged to increase the minimum wage to 10,000 won (US$8.98) by 2020, as part of his efforts to narrow the income gap and boost private consumption, which may then stimulate the economy.As a first step, the government earlier decided to raise the minimum wage by 16.4 percent to 7,530 won per hour next year, marking its biggest jump in nearly two decades.
Samsung briefly halts smartphone production in wake of quake
Samsung Electronics Co. briefly halted operations of its smartphone production line and had all workers evacuate after a 5.4-magnitude earthquake hit the nearby port city of Pohang on Wednesday. The quake occurred at around 2:29 p.m. some 9 kilometers north of Pohang, according to the Korea Meteorological Administration. Samsung's factory is located in Gumi, just north of Pohang. The tech company suspended the operations for 30 minutes and had the 6,500 staff leave the building immediately, it said.
U.S. Chamber of Commerce members want 'full' implementation of KORUS
A senior U.S. Chamber of Commerce official called on the governments of South Korea and the United States to "fully and faithfully" implement their open trade agreement for the mutual benefit of all sides.
The Korea-U.S. free trade agreement (FTA), referred to as KORUS, went into effect on March 15, 2012, with the two sides starting the process of modifying the pact. The talks recently began after U.S. President Donald Trump called KORUS "a horrible deal," citing a large U.S. trade imbalance with South Korea.
KAI receives maintenance order of F-16 jets from U.S. Air Force
The Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) has received maintenance order of the U.S Air Force's F-16 (Fighting Falcon) jets, proving its global aerospace MRO (Maintenance, Repair & Overhaul) capabilities.
KAI announced on October 31 that it has concluded a US$48.8 million contract with the U.S. Air Force with regard to the maintenance and structural augmentation of about 90 units of F-16 fighter jets that the American Pacific Air Force operates. The contract commences in October 2017 and ends in September 2022.
57 Injured, 1,536 Displaced by Pohang Quakes
Reports of damage are flooding in following a series of powerful earthquakes that jolted the southeastern city of Pohang on Wednesday afternoon. The nation's central disasters safety relief headquarters said that as of 6 a.m. Thursday, the quakes injured 57 people and displaced one-thousand-536. Ten of the injured people are receiving treatment at hospital, with no fatalities reported yet. The displaced people are taking shelter at 27 locations around the city, including a gymnasium.
Gov't to Consider Designating Pohang Disaster Area
Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon says that the government will consider designating quake-hit Pohang City as a special disaster area after assessing the damage.Kim made the remark on Thursday after a news briefing on South Korea's signing of a currency swap deal with Canada. The minister said that the government will provide financial support for Pohang people to sustain their businesses and use its reserve funds if necessary.
College Entrance Exam Postponed 1 Week due to Earthquake
South Korea has postponed an annual college entrance exam for one week due to safety concerns following a five-point-four magnitude earthquake that hit the southeastern region on Wednesday. The Education Ministry announced the measure on Wednesday evening in a reversal of its earlier decision to conduct the College Scholastic Ability Test(CSAT) despite the quake. A ministry official said the CSAT for the 2018 academic year, originally scheduled for Thursday, will be conducted on November 23rd.
Trump: We have to denuclearize N. Korea
U.S. President Donald Trump declared Wednesday that he will not accept a North Korea with nuclear weapons and will continue to put "maximum pressure" on the regime.Trump returned from a 12-day Asia trip Tuesday and made the remark in a televised statement that detailed the purported successes of his tour."I called on every nation, including China and Russia, to unite in isolating the North Korean regime, cutting off all ties of trade and commerce until it stops its dangerous provocation," he said of his speech before South Korea's National Assembly last week. "We have to denuclearize North Korea."
U.S. unlikely to seek S. Korea's permission to strike N. Korea: ex-negotiator
The United States is unlikely to seek South Korea's permission should it decide to strike North Korea, a former U.S. nuclear negotiator said Wednesday.Speaking at a forum, Robert Gallucci, who brokered the 1994 nuclear freeze deal with North Korea, said he delivered that view to President Moon Jae-in when they met in Seoul last month."It is completely understandable that the South Korean president and South Korean Assembly people and South Korean people would like ... to be consulted about any decision the United States would take, which would cause retaliation by the North against the South," he said.
Trump says he discussed military options for N.K. in S. Korea
U.S. President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he discussed military options against North Korea during his visit to South Korea last week."I discussed with the U.S. and South Korean military leaders both military options and readiness to respond to North Korean provocation or offensive actions," he said at a White House news conference a day after returning from his 12-day trip to Asia.
The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
Earthquake strikes southeastern Korea
The government on Wednesday rolled out emergency response measures following the 5.4-magnitude earthquake that struck the southeastern industrial city of Pohang, North Gyeongsang Province. The quake occurred at around 2:29 p.m. some 9 kilometers north of Pohang and a series of aftershocks followed, the Korea Meteorological Administration said. A quake that struck South Korea last year at magnitude 5.8 in the nearby city of Gyeongju is the only stronger one on record. The initial quake, the second largest on record in South Korea, was followed by a 4.6-magnitude quake at about 4:49 p.m.
Suneung postponed amid quake fears
South Korea’s Education Ministry confirmed Wednesday that the national entrance examination, or suneung, will be delayed to Nov. 23, due to a possible aftershock in the quake-hit Pohang area. It is the first time that the multi-subject standardized test, equivalent to the US’ SAT, has ever been postponed since it was introduced in 1994.
S. Korea, Canada agree on currency swap deal
South Korea and Canada clinched a standing bilateral currency swap deal that will help expand financial exchanges between the two countries, Seoul's central bank said Thursday.Bank of Korea Governor Lee Ju-yeol and his Canadian counterpart Stephen S. Poloz signed the agreement at a ceremony at the Bank of Canada's head office in Ottawa, on Wednesday, according to the BOK. The liquidity swap arrangement does not stipulate any ceilings. "The arrangement allows for the provision of liquidity in each jurisdiction to support domestic financial stability should market conditions warrant," the BOK said in a statement.
The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
Powerful earthquakes strike Pohang; tremors felt across the country
A series of powerful earthquakes struck the southeastern city of Pohang, Wednesday, shaking many parts of the country, including Seoul nearly 300 kilometers away. The first major quake ― 5.4 in magnitude ― struck Pohang at 2:29 p. m. , the Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA) said. The epicenter was measured about nine kilometers north of Pohang and nine kilometers beneath the surface. The quake was followed by aftershocks of lesser intensity, including a 3.6-magnitude one at 3:09 p.m. When a 4.6-magnitude quake occurred 8 kilometers north of the city at 4:49 p.m. , residents across South Gyeongsang Province feared whether the tremors had yet to end. Fire departments in Changwon city 130 kilometers away from Pohang received dozens of calls from worried citizens.
College entrance exam delayed on quake
The education ministry said Wednesday the college scholastic aptitude test (CSAT), which was set to take place today, will be postponed for a week due to the 5.4 magnitude quake that jolted the city of Pohang.
This is the first time the test has been delayed due to a natural phenomenon since it began being administered in 1993."We have decided to hold the CSAT on Nov. 23 considering the safety of students, as well as fairness in administrating the test," Deputy Prime Minister and Education Minister Kim Sang-kon said in a briefing at the Seoul Government Complex.
China's special envoy to visit North Korea this week
A special envoy of Chinese President Xi Jinping will visit North Korea this week, the Chinese and North Korean state media reported Wednesday."Song Tao, head of the International Liaison Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, will soon visit the Democratic People's Republic of Korea as a special envoy of Xi Jinping," the North's Koren Central News Agency said.
DongA Ilbo (http://english.donga.com)
China to send special envoy to North Korea
A high-level Chinese diplomat’s visit to North Korea for the first time in two years is drawing much attention towards whether this would serve as an opportunity to thaw the tense relationship between Beijing and Pyongyang. Song Tao, who heads the Communist Party of China’s external affairs department, is scheduled to leave for North Korea on Friday, as a special envoy of Chinese President Xi Jinping, to inform the North of the results of the 19th Communist Party Congress last month, China’s state-run Xinhua news agency reported. North Korea's Korean Central News Agency has confirmed that a special envoy of President Xi will visit North Korea soon.
‘S. Korean soldiers responded well,’ says the UN Command
It is reported that Gen. Kim Un-yong, South Korean commander of the Third Army, has played an important role in transferring a North Korean soldier shot during his defection process through the Joint Security Area (JSA), or a truce village of Panmunjom, to Dr. Lee Guk-jong at Ajou University Hospital in Suwon, Gyeonggi Province. The defecting soldier sustained more than five gun wounds, including those in his shoulders, thigh and stomach, and was in critical condition. It was indeed a matter of urgency in which his life or death depends on the initial medical treatment.
Hyundai Motor Group to build a research hub in Silicon Valley
Hyundai Motor Group plans to open the Open Innovation Center in the United States in order to engage in joint research activities with cutting-edge start-ups in Silicon Valley. Hyundai has recently come up with series of strategies to expand its global partnership, and its investment in Silicon Valley seems to be at the forefront of Hyundai’s efforts. All eyes are now on whether Hyundai will turn its global expansion into actual profits.
Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
Most Koreans Say Asian Financial Crisis Was Worst Hardship
Six out of every 10 Koreans believe that the most difficult period for their country was the 1997 Asian financial crisis, according to a survey. The state-run Korea Development Institute last month polled 1,000 adults to mark the 20th anniversary of the crisis, and 57.4 percent said it was the worst economic hardship the country has suffered. Next were the era of low growth that started in 2010 (26.6 percent) and the global financial crisis of 2008 (5.2 percent). Also, 59.7 percent of respondents said the Asian crisis had a negative impact on their lives, while 39.7 percent said they or their family suffered job losses or bankruptcies and 64.4 percent said they were psychologically impacted. Negative experiences were more commonly cited by those who were then university students (68.9 percent) and self-employed (67.2 percent).
N.Korea Fired 40 Shots at Fleeing Soldier
North Korean soldiers fired around 40 rounds from their AK-47 assault rifles at a soldier who fled to South Korea on Monday, but South Korean soldiers did nothing in response. The UN Command is investigating whether any North Korean troops crossed over the military demarcation line, which is under its control, during the chase. Under the rules of engagement, South Korean troops are required to fire warning shots if North Korean soldiers shoot their weapons across the MDL.
Appellate Court Upholds Choi Soon-sil's 1st Jail Sentence
An appeals court on Tuesday sentenced ex-president Park Geun-hye's confidante Choi Soon-sil to three years in jail on charges of abusing her close ties to Park to solicit academic favors for her daughter.
The ruling only upholds a lower court decision on one of many criminal charges she still faces alongside her old crony. Choi Kyung-hee, the former Ewha Womans University president who arranged the favors, was sentenced to two years behind bars, while sentences for other university officials implicated in the scandal were also upheld.
HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
President Moon’s repair of relations with China is highlight of productive trip
After completing his eight-day tour of three countries in Southeast Asia, South Korean President Moon Jae-in held a press conference in Manila, Philippines, on Nov. 14 at which he expressed with satisfaction that the visit “was quite productive and rewarding.” Moon secured the support of each country for his New Southern Policy, which sets out to greatly strengthen South Korea’s relations with ASEAN (the Association of Southeast Asian Nations), and he widened the horizon of foreign policy through bilateral interaction with individual countries on the sidelines of this multilateral diplomatic event.
Three US aircraft carriers conduct military exercises in vicinity of Northern Limit Line
A US nuclear-powered aircraft carrier advanced to within 92 km of the Northern Limit Line (NLL) in the East Sea on Nov. 13 for military exercises. North Korea sent a written message of strong protest to the UN in response.The US announced the maneuvers by the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76), one of three aircraft carriers, to the South Korean press that day. While the US military did not disclose its location, it reportedly engaged in exercises at a location 92 km south of the NLL and 92 km northeast of Ulleung Island. This was the first-ever report of a US nuclear-powered aircraft carrier traveling as far north as the vicinity of the NLL. The other aircraft carriers participating in the exercises were the USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) and the USS Nimitz (CVN-68). Rear Admiral Marc Dalton, Commander of Carrier Strike Group 5, said the US military would conduct joint exercises with the three aircraft carriers at every available opportunity.
North Korean defector remains on life support following surgery
A North Korean soldier who defected through the Joint Security Area (JSA) at Panmunjeom on Nov. 18 originally attempted to cross south in a military jeep. Details also emerged of a hair-trigger situation as the North Korean military fired some 40 rounds with handguns and AK assault rifles.“Initial surgery was carried out [on the defector] between 5:30 pm and 11:03 pm yesterday at Ajou University Hospital in Suwon, and five handgun and Ak-47 bullets were removed,” a Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) official said at a Nov. 14 press briefing. The armistice agreement forbids the carrying of automatic weapons besides pistols at the JSA in Panmunjeom.
JoongAng Ilbo (http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/)
Major earthquake hits Pohang, CSAT delayed
A 5.4-magnitude earthquake shook the city of Pohang in North Gyeongsang Wednesday afternoon, the second strongest ever for Korea, followed within hours by a 4.6-magnitude aftershock. The Ministry of Education announced that the CSAT (College Scholastic Ability Test), originally scheduled to take place today, will be delayed one week. “A 5.4-magnitude earthquake hit a point some 9 kilometers [5.6 miles] north of Buk District in Pohang at 2:29 p.m.,” said the Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA). “A 4.6-magnitude quake hit a point 8 kilometers north of Buk District at 4:49 p.m.”
Thaad row with China hasn’t been settled yet
The row between Seoul and Beijing over U.S. deployment of an antimissile system in Korea and China’s unofficial economic retaliation will only end for good when the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (Thaad) battery is removed from the peninsula, a senior official of Chinese Foreign Ministry told the JoongAng Ilbo Tuesday. “The Thaad agreement announced by the foreign ministries of Korea and China on Oct. 31 is just the first step to resolve the problem,” he said. “The final step will be the complete withdrawal of the Thaad system.”
Moon’s new jobs campaign stumbled in Oct.
Last month, 297,000 new jobs were added when compared to a year ago, a 1 percent increase. However, this was a drop from the 314,000 jobs created in September. The unemployment rate for young people also remained relatively high. The figures were disappointing for the Moon Jae-in administration, which has promised more jobs, especially for the young.
The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Moon Jae-in's Balanced Foreign Relations
President Moon Jae-in began to mention "balanced foreign relations," South Korea's most difficult diplomatic task. What lied at the center of the president's recent diplomatic schedule including the sealing of conflicts over the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system with China, U.S. President Donald Trump's visit to South Korea, the summit with China, and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit, was "balanced foreign relations." Considering that at one time, the government had seemed so devoted to the U.S. triggering criticism that South Korea was "crawling between the legs of the United States," the latest change is clearly significant.
NK Soldier Charged Toward the JSA in a Military Vehicle, While Soldiers in Pursuit Fired 40 Shots
On November 14, it was confirmed that the North Korean soldier who defected to South Korea on November 13 through the Joint Security Area (JSA) in Panmunjom had approached the North Korean post near the JSA in a military jeep. The soldier charged toward the Military Demarcation Line (MDL), but when the vehicle fell into a drainage ditch, he abandoned the car and ran toward the South. North Korean soldiers who pursued him fired over forty shots, leading to a highly explosive situation at the JSA.
Citizens Clash over the Erection of a Park Chung-hee Statue
Citizens clashed over a statue of former President Park Chung-hee at the President Park Chung-hee Memorial Museum and Library. People for and against the statue condemned each other, tossing names, such as "reds" and "pro-Japanese collaborators," back and forth and even engaging in a physical fight. In the process, some people were arrested by the police.
The Korea Economic Daily (http://english.hankyung.com/)
Tourism and Duty-free Industries Hopeful about Improving Korea-China Relations
AsKorea and China are set to improve their relationship that was rocked by thecontroversy over the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-ballisticmissile system, Korea's tourism and duty-free shopping industries are raisingtheir hopes of better days. Thetourism industry believes that the Chinese government's group tour ban to Koreawould be relaxed soon. A travel agency in Hebei posted an Internet ad recentlyfor a group tour program to Korea in November at the price of 1,480 yuan(US$223). China's largest online travel agency Ctrip also put out group tourprograms to Korea for the first time in seven months.
Gov't Decides to Give $8 Mil. Aid to North Korea...Timing to Be Announced Later
The government has decided to give support to North Korea worth US$8 million in programs helping its vulnerable people including children and pregnant women indirectly through international organizations. It, however, has not decided when to start sending money and exactly how. This is interpreted as a choice to deflect criticism that it is undertaking an aid project at a time when North Korea is causing an international storm by launching a series of missile tests.
Korea's MBI to Establish EV Plant in Vietnam
MBI, a Korean manufacturer specializing in making transmissions, will build an electric car plant in Hanoi, Vietnam, jointly with local firm N&G Group. The two companies will invest a total of US$1 billion for the next seven years.The companies said on September 21 that the heads of the two companies signed an agreement to establish a joint venture called Viko Motors in South Hanoi next month. Earlier in June this year, MBI was promised by the Vietnamese government and the Hanoi city government for a 20-year free land lease, high-tech investment incentive, preferential tariffs, and designation of MBI-held patented technologies as Vietnamese standards.
AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)
S. Korea launches pilot project for in-vehicle payment system
An in-vehicle payment system will be introduced in South Korea to mobile wallets to dashboards under a pilot "connected car commerce" project led by KT, a leading telecom company which has tried to develop software and networks related to connected cars. KT and its sister company Smartro involved in integrated electronic banking agreed to form a consortium with BC Card, Lotte Card, and E1, an energy company which distributes liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).
Students express frustration over delayed college entrance exam
A 5.4-magnitude earthquake which hit the southeastern port city of Pohang shattered the hearts of many students who have studied hard for years as education authorities fearing aftershocks put off a nationwide college entrance exam for their safety. After careful consideration, the education ministry pushed back the College Scholastic Aptitude Test by a week to November 23, although the quake did not cause any severe damage outside Pohang. Some 593,000 students were to take the test on Thursday at 1,180 schools. "I've been preparing for this exam for almost 10 years. I am so angry and I will not study anymore until the exam," Jeong Taek-geun, a student in the central city of Daejeon, told Aju News.
Dozens of parasitic worms removed from defector's intestines: doctor
Along with bullets, dozens of parasitic worms, including a 27-centimeter-long roundworm, have been removed from the intestines of a North Korean soldier who defected through a border truce village this week, a doctor said. The soldier aboard a helicopter was rushed to Ajou University Hospital in Suwon south of Seoul for treatment of multiple gunshot wounds to his solder, abdomen and thigh after he defected Monday through the truce village of Panmunjom in the middle of the demilitarized zone (DMZ) which bisects the Korean peninsula.
Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
NY regulator mulling fine on Korean banks for AML violation
South Korean banking operations in New York could face a barrage of punitive and remedial actions from the U.S. state regulator for incompliance with state and federal anti-money laundering regulations.
According to multiple sources on Wall Street, the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) is deliberating fining NongHyup Bank’s New York branch within the year.
Hyundai Motor opens mobility, robot tech innovation center in Silicon Valley
South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Group on Wednesday opened an innovation center in Silicon Valley, California, accelerating its efforts to move ahead of its rivals in the race to develop mobility, artificial intelligence (AI), and robot technologies. According to Hyundai Motor Group that owns the country’s two largest automakers Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Motors Corp., Hyundai Cradle will be an open innovation center that pursues innovation in future core technologies such as AI, mobility and connected services, autonomous driving, smart cities, and robotics. In particular, the new center will aim to provide groundwork in creating new businesses focusing on boosting synergy between robotics and future mobility convergence.
Daewoong Pharma unveils its largest drug production facility in S. Korea
South Korea’s Daewoong Pharmaceutical Co. is set to embark on medicine production at its newest and largest factory in the country that is expected to serve as its global manufacturing base.
The company on Wednesday unveiled its new manufacturing facility in Cheongju, North Chungcheong Province, designed mainly to produce drugs for export.
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