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The Korean daily media headlines and humor

Monday, November 20, 2017

Your Excellency:

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

Very Respectfully Yours

/s/

Lee Kyung-sik

Publisher-Chairman

Korea Post Media

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Ambassadors and their family members are invited to show off the traditional costumes of their country at a prestigious Hanbok show

At Seoul Plaza Hotel on Thursday December 12

The Daehan News and The Korea Post media co-host the 6th Annual Hanbok Festival on the theme of “Faithfulness to the Nation, the Family and the World” at the Diamond Hall on the 22nd floor of the Seoul Plaza Hotel on Dec. 7, 2017. This year, unlike in the past, the Festival was expanded to include the traditional National Costumes of all the different countries of the world diplomatically represented in Korea. In this regard, all the Embassies of the world in Seoul are cordially invited to represent their country at the Festival with their wonderful traditional costumes. (See relevant photos at the end of this letter.)

The costumes of all the different countries modeled by the members of the embassies will be covered by all the five media outlets of The Korea Post (3 in English and 2 in the Korean-language) following the end of the Festival.

In principle, the Ambassadors, Madams and their children are invited to introduce their traditional national costumes. However, they may be represented by their deputies if necessary.

The representative of each participating country is presented with a prestigious plaque of citation in memory of the occasion.

A detailed schedule of the Festival is as follows:

1800 hours, Thursday 7 December 2017: Presentation of Seodo (Korea’s Western Province) folk songs. Photo session for group photographs

1800-1820 hours: National anthem, declaration of ceremony open, welcome address and congratulatory addresses.

18:20-1850 hours: Presentation of performing art

1850-1940 hours: Dinner amidst with presentation of performing art numbers

1940-2010 hours: Fashion parades of Korean and international costumes.

2010-2030 hours: Presentation of citations and memorial gifts.

2030 hours: Declaration of the close of the Festival.

(For further details and inquiries concerning participation, please call Ms. Sua Kim (010-7584-5873, English) or Ms. Kim Jung-mi (010-3388-1682, Korean).

Participants in the 4th Hanbok Fashion Contest

Photo shows models wearing the costume of an ancient Korean dynasty King (left) and Queen at the 5th annual Hanbok Fashion Show.

(For more pictures, please visit:

http://www.koreapost.com/news/articleView.html?idxno=5448)

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Chairperson of Seoul Garden Club and doyenne of Korean Tea Culture Association

Mrs. Okcal hosts luncheon for spouses of ambassadors, noted Korean women leaders

Mrs. Pinar Okcal, spouse of the ambassador of Turkey in Seoul, hosted a luncheon at her residence in Seongbuk-dong, Seoul on June 9, 2017 for the leaders and members of the Seoul Garden Club.

The meeting was attended by the spouses of the ambassadors and leaders of the Club, including Chairperson Mrs. Kim Chong-sook of the Seoul Garden Club, and Korea’s traditional tea culture doyenne, Madam Myung Won Kim Mi-hee, who is the chairperson of the Myung Won Cultural Foundation. Among the other ladies present at the meeting were spouses of some of the ambassadors. They were Mrs. Konul Teymurova (spouse of the ambassador of Azerbaijan, concurrently the doyenne of the Association of the Spouses of the Ambassadors in Seoul), Mrs. Maria Leonor Roura Seminario (spouse of the ambassador of Ecuador), Mrs. Sarah Bile (spouse of the ambassador of Cote D'ivoire0, Mrs. Maria Claudia Latorre Mejia (spouse of the ambassador of Colombia), Mrs. Nehal Hanna (spouse of the ambassador of Egypt), Mrs. Ayako Nagamine (spouse of the ambassador of Japan), Mrs. Rina Okumura-Vaivara (spouse of the ambassador of Latvia), Mrs. Olga Wilfrida Centurion De Silvero (spouxe of the ambassador of Paraguay), Mrs. Ndeye Asiiatou Faye Ndiaye (spouse of the ambassador of Senegal), Mrs. Zhanna Baigaziyeva (spouse of the ambassador of Kazakhstan), and Mrs. Marina Nobre Quinteiro (spouse of the ambassador of Portugal).

(For further details and more pictures please scroll down to the bottom.)

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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:


The Korea Post media (www.koreapost.com) in English, (www.koreapost.co.kr) in Korean.

Ex-U.S. Navy officer calls for N.K. naval blockade

A naval blockade may be the best feasible option to dismantle North Korea's nuclear weapons program, according to a former U.S. Navy officer. Retired Lt. Cmdr. Gregory Keeley made the argument in a recent contribution to The Hill, saying there is a history of successful naval blockades that forced the adversary into submission."The Trump administration seemingly has only two potential responses, both of them bad," he wrote. "Option one is direct kinetic military action to halt Kim's development of nuclear capabilities. The second is to learn to live with a nuclear-armed despotic regime."

Business indices for renewable energy worsen

Key business indices for renewable energy, including investment and domestic demand, have backtracked over the past few years, data showed Monday, a challenge to the government policy to pursue non-nuclear power sources. The data provided in a 2016 survey by the New Renewable Energy Center of the Korea Energy Management Corp. showed that six of the seven indices fell last year from the previous year. Investment in renewable energy, for instance, fell 13.6 percent to 688 billion won (US$625.73 million). Local demand dropped 17.3 percent to 4.11 trillion won, and the number of companies 14.4 percent to 405. Exports also shrank, down 13 percent to 3.54 trillion won, while the number of people employed in the industry decreased 10.9 percent to 14,412.

Two 3 magnitude aftershocks hit S. Korea's southeast

Two aftershocks in the mid-3 magnitude range have rattled South Korea's southeastern city of Pohang, including the second strongest in the series of secondary shocks that followed after a 5.4 magnitude quake hit the region last week.A 3.6 magnitude tremor came at around 6 a.m. Monday, only hours after a 3.5 magnitude aftershock shook the same coastal city in North Gyeongsang Province, according to the Korea Meteorological Administration.

Mrs. Okcal hosts luncheon for spouses of ambassadors, noted Korean women leaders

Mrs. Pinar Okcal, spouse of the ambassador of Turkey in Seoul, hosted a luncheon at her residence in Seongbuk-dong, Seoul on June 9, 2017 for the leaders and members of the Seoul Garden Club. The meeting was attended by the spouses of the ambassadors and leaders of the Club, including Chairperson Mrs. Kim Chong-sook of the Seoul Garden Club, and Korea’s traditional tea culture doyenne, Madam Myung Won Kim Mi-hee, who is the chairperson of the Myung Won Cultural Foundation.

S. Korea's instant meals market at 2.2 tln won in 2016

The South Korean market for instant meals reached 2.2 trillion won (US$2 billion) last year mainly on the back of increased sales of ready to eat meals, a report showed Sunday. According to the report by the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs and the Korea Agro-Fisheries and Food Trade Corporation, the local market for home meal replacement (HMR) products jumped 34.8 percent on-year in 2016.

Among the HMR products, refrigerated meal boxes accounted for 58.7 percent followed by frozen food at 36.4 percent, the report showed.

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KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)

3.6 Magnitude Aftershock Hits Pohang Monday Morning

A three-point-six magnitude aftershock struck the southeastern city of Pohang in North Gyeongsang Province on Monday morning. The Korea Meteorological Administration said that the shock occurred eleven kilometers north of the city's Buk district at 6:05 a.m. with a depth of 12 kilometers. Another aftershock with a magnitude of three-point-five hit the area about six hours earlier at 11:45 p.m. Sunday. Monday’s quake is the second most powerful aftershock since a five-point-four magnitude earthquake rattled the city last Wednesday.

Gochang Bird Flu Case Confirmed Highly Pathogenic

The government says that a case of bird flu detected in North Jeolla Province has been confirmed to be highly pathogenic. The Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs said Sunday that the avian influenza(AI) detected Saturday from ducks at a poultry farm in Gochang County tested positive for the highly-pathogenic strain of H5N6. The ministry raised the AI alert to the highest level as of Monday midnight, issuing a 48-hour travel ban for all poultry farms across the nation. The H5N6 strain is the same type that hit the country from November last year to February this year, resulting in the culling of some 38 million birds.

Investment by S. Korea's 30 Biz Groups Jumps 43%

Investments by South Korea's top 30 business groups jumped over 40 percent this year.CEO Score, a corporate research firm, said on Sunday that combined investment by 261 firms affiliated with the 30 business groups came to 57-point-eight trillion won in the first three quarters of the year, up 42-point-six percent year-on-year.The total excludes funds allocated for various research and development projects undertaken by businesses. Samsung Group invested about 20 trillion won, accounting for a third of all investments made. SK came in second at about ten-point-one trillion won, followed by LG group at seven-point-seven trillion won.

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Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)

Russia's top envoy on N. Korean nuke to visit Seoul this week

Russia's top envoy on North Korean nuclear issues will visit South Korea this week and hold talks with officials on the subject, sources said Monday. Vice Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov, who is Russia's top negotiator on North Korea's nuclear weapons program, is scheduled to arrive in Seoul on Sunday for a three-day visit to attend a Russia-related event here, according to the diplomatic sources. During the visit, the Russian diplomat will also meet with his South Korean counterpart Lee Do-hoon, the special representative for Korean Peninsula peace and security affairs, as well as with Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Yoon Soon-gu, the sources said.

Int'l community closely watching possible meeting between N.K. leader, Chinese envoy

The international community is closely monitoring the possible meeting between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and a special Chinese envoy, currently in Pyongyang, diplomatic observers said Sunday.

Song Tao, the special envoy of Chinese President Xi Jinping, is visiting the isolated nation to inform Pyongyang of the outcome of the Communist Party of China's recent party congress. At the congress, Xi secured a second five-year term as head of the country's ruling party. The North's ruling party newspaper, the Rodong Sinmun, reported Sunday that the party hosted a banquet Saturday evening for the head of China's international liaison office. It, however, didn't elaborate on what was discussed over the dinner table or if he would be able to meet Kim.

Ex-U.S. Navy officer calls for N.K. naval blockade

A naval blockade may be the best feasible option to dismantle North Korea's nuclear weapons program, according to a former U.S. Navy officer. Retired Lt. Cmdr. Gregory Keeley made the argument in a recent contribution to The Hill, saying there is a history of successful naval blockades that forced the adversary into submission."The Trump administration seemingly has only two potential responses, both of them bad," he wrote. "Option one is direct kinetic military action to halt Kim's development of nuclear capabilities. The second is to learn to live with a nuclear-armed despotic regime."

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The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)

China poaching Korean battery experts

Korean battery firms are on alert over Chinese companies’ aggressive moves to poach researchers and engineers from Korea, one of the leading nations in developing and producing electric vehicle batteries, according to sources on Sunday. Chinese automakers have been luring experts from Korean battery firms, including Samsung SDI, LG Chem and SK Innovation, with high salaries and compensation. They are offering jobs both in open and private recruitment processes. A recruiting firm with knowledge about the Korean battery industry is making contact with Korean engineers for Chinese companies. Around 30 to 40 percent of the key battery experts in Korea may be subject to the recruitment,” a Korean news media report quoted a source as saying.

Suspected bird flu case confirmed to be highly pathogenic

The South Korean government said Sunday that a suspected bird flu case was confirmed to be highly pathogenic and then imposed a travel ban to prevent the further spread of the animal virus. The avian influenza, discovered on a poultry farm with 12,000 ducks in Gochang, some 300 kilometers southwest of Seoul, tested positive as a highly pathogenic strain of H5N6, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

Government speeds up earthquake preparedness after Pohang

A 5.4 magnitude earthquake and a series of aftershocks that struck off the southeastern city of Pohang, North Gyeongsang Province, last week had damaged some 2,000 private homes and injured dozens as of Sunday, according to the Ministry of Interior and Safety. A total of 1,118 people have been displaced and are living in 13 temporary shelters, according to the ministry’s morning briefing, while some 20,000 from the military, police and fire departments and public volunteers have mobilized for restoration work. So far 82 people have been treated for injuries at hospitals. Of them, 15 remain hospitalized.

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The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)

Chinese envoy's visit to North Korea raises hope for dialogue

A Chinese special envoy's visit to North Korea is raising cautious hopes for resumption of dialogue on the North's nuclear and missile issues. Chinese diplomats including Song Tao, the special envoy of Chinese President Xi Jinping, arrived in Pyongyang Friday to inform the North of the outcome of the recent 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), according to the North's state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), Saturday. Xi entered his second five-year term at the congress held last month.

Ex-NIS chief summoned for 2nd time

Lee Byeong-ho, the only person who avoided arrest among three former spy agency chiefs over allegation they gave "bribes" to former President Park Geun-hye with the agency's "special funding," was questioned for a second time, Sunday.The Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office summoned Lee in less than two days after the Seoul Central District court rejected its request to issue an arrest warrant. The remaining two _ Nam Jae-joon and Lee Byung-kee _ were arrested following the court-issued arrest warrant. The three are suspected of paying 4 billion won ($3.6 million) of the agency's special funds to Park's former presidential secretaries _ Ahn Bong-geun, Lee Jae-man and Jeong Ho-seong.

Pohang quakes damage some 2,000 houses, 227 schools

Some 2,000 houses have been damaged by a series of earthquakes as strong as 5.4 magnitude that hit the southeastern city of Pohang last week, the Ministry of Interior and Safety said Sunday. According to the ministry's National Disaster and Safety Control Center, 2,165 private properties have been reported to have been affected as of 5 a.m. Sunday by the earthquakes, of which 1,988 are private houses. The most frequent damage was done to roofs, with 1,789 cases being filed. The number of houses almost destroyed stood at 52, while those seriously damaged was 157. Ninety shops and 77 factories have been damaged.

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DongA Ilbo (http://english.donga.com)

Officially licensed padding booms up PyeongChang Olympics

A line of some 1,500 people was formed on Saturday morning from the main entrance of the Lotte Department Store located at Jung-gu, Seoul to the Euljiro 1-ga Station of subway line 2. The early winter temperature of Seoul, which fell below to minus 4 degrees Celsius in the morning, did not stop people from lining up. Around 9:00 a.m., the staff of the department store handed out 700 ticket numbers. “The person who received the first ticket number arrived at the department store at 2:00 a.m.,” said a Lotte Department Store official.

Seoul in talks with Washington to expand information sharing

It is reported on Sunday that Seoul is in talks with the U.S. State Department to expand and strengthen information sharing on North Korea. The South Korean government intends to exchange human intelligence (HUMINT) of its competitive edge with the U.S. imagery intelligence (IMNT) and communication intelligence (COMINT).The United States has provided South Korea with a limited scope of images and communication intelligence collected through its reconnaissance assets such as surveillance satellites of the U.S. forces in Korea and the U2 high-altitude reconnaissance aircraft, according to a diplomatic source.

Seoul homes cost 100 million won higher than Tokyo homes

The median housing price of Seoul has turned out to be 100 million won higher than that of Tokyo, Japan, and it takes five more years for Seoulites to purchase a house, compared to Tokyo residents.Rep. Park Kwang-on’s office of the Minjoo Party and the National Assembly Research Service reported Sunday that the median price of a Seoul house stood at 434.85 million won, highest in Korea, and 124.97 million won higher than Tokyo’s 398.9 million won (based on exchange rate as of Sunday). The median housing price of Seoul was similar to those of New York (437.36 million won) and Washington D.C. (432.85 million won), but was lower than London’s 638 million won. The median price is the value in the middle when housing prices are listed from lowest to highest. Most median prices are lower than the average.

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Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)

Japan Mulls Shelter for N.Korean Refugees in Kyushu

Japan is considering building a temporary shelter for North Korean refugees in Kyushu in case of a war on the Korean Peninsula, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported last week. The Japanese government also plans to step up patrols along the coasts to prevent North Korean agents from entering and to take North Korean boat people to port before determining if they are genuine refugees. "Kyushu is the most likely location for the facility," the daily wrote. Tokyo believes that if the U.S. launches military strikes on North Korea, "tens of thousands of evacuees could reach the Japanese coast by wooden boats and other means," the daily said.

Missing Ferry Disaster Victims' Families Abandon Hope

The families of five victims of the 2014 ferry disaster have given up hope that the remains of their loved ones will ever be found. Six family members of the missing victims made a deep bow in Mokpo, South Jeolla Province on Thursday, the 1,311th day since the ferry sank, to express their gratitude to people who supported and encouraged them."We're grief-stricken, but decided to hold our loved ones in our hearts," one of them said.

N.Korean Defector May Have Been Driver

The UN Command which oversees the Joint Security Area in the border truce village of Panmunjom is releasing CCTV video footage of a North Korean soldier's dramatic defection on Thursday. The UN Military Armistice Commission analyzed footage captured on CCTV and investigated the events after interviewing the commander of the South Korean side of the border security unit. The footage is expected to show whether bullets fired by North Korean troops after the fleeing soldier flew across the border and why South Korean soldiers did not return fire.

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HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)

Asian-American judges work to build international solidarity on comfort women issue

Lillian Sing and Julie Tang are judges in the American state of California. They retired from their positions after serving for 30 and 26 years, respectively. Tang submitted her resignation in 2014, and Sing in 2015. Sing is also the first Asian-American female judge in Northern California. “I didn’t want to leave my position as judge. I love working as a judge. [Quitting my job] was a big sacrifice for me,” Sing said. In the US, federal judges are appointed for life, but state judges serve on renewable six-year contracts.

Trump’s arms dealing will be legacy of his visit to Asia

The most striking thing US President Donald Trump said during his three-day visit to Japan was his boasting about US weaponry. He made the above remarks at a Nov. 6 press conference in Tokyo, responding as if on cue to a question about Japan’s decision not to shoot down North Korean missiles passing through their skies in August and September. He blithely and simplistically suggested that the solution lay not in comprehensive security policies for the sake of allies South Korea and Japan, but purely in buying more US weapons. Through his Asia trip, Trump’s focus was entirely on how many more US-made items – including weapons – he could sell to northeast Asian states.

Two-thirds of Korean public opposed to installation of Park Chung-hee statue at memorial library

Amid ongoing controversy over the President Park Chung-hee Memorial Foundation’s installment of a statue of Park Chung-hee on the site of the Park Chung-hee Memorial Library, located in the Sangam neighborhood of Seoul’s Mapo District, a recent public opinion poll shows that two out of three South Koreans are opposed to constructing the statue. On Nov. 16, polling organization Real Meter published the results of a survey it carried out on 511 people on Nov. 15 at the request of the TBS television and radio network. The survey, which had a sample error of ±4.3% and a confidence of 95%, found that 66.5% of respondents were opposed to building a statue (50.7% very much opposed, 15.8% somewhat opposed), which was more than two times greater than the 30.1% who supported it (16.3% very much in favor, 13.8% somewhat in favor).

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JoongAng Ilbo (http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/)

Xi Jinping sends a top envoy, gift to Kim Jong-un

Chinese President Xi Jinping’s special envoy to Pyongyang, Song Tao, met with a series of North Korean officials over the weekend to discuss the situation on the Korean Peninsula, and much attention was fixed on whether the diplomat would meet leader Kim Jong-un. Song’s trip to Pyongyang follows U.S. President Donald Trump and President Xi’s bilateral talks earlier this month and speculation that they may have reached some sort of breakthrough on an approach to the North Korean nuclear crisis. Trump fueled the speculation by tweeting Thursday, “China is sending an Envoy and Delegation to North Korea - A big move, we’ll see what happens!”

Pohang tallies mounting costs of its big quake

At least 3,300 structures in Pohang and neighboring cities were damaged by the 5.4-magnitude earthquake that rattled the southeastern port city last week, local authorities announced Sunday, up from nearly 1,470 counted the day before, as safety officials find more cracks and rubble throughout the Gyeongsang region. By 11 a.m. Sunday, the National Disaster and Safety Control, which is run by the Ministry of Interior and Safety, said 2,832 private establishments and 557 public ones were affected by the quake. Of the private facilities, 2,628 were houses, most of which reported damage to their roofs. Many of the public facilities that were damaged were schools that developed cracks. A total of 227 schools were affected, 110 of which were elementary schools.

Instant meals’ now a part of Korean daily life

As the number of people living alone rises and more women work, the so-called “instant meal” industry continues to grow. According to a study by the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs and the Korea Agro-Fisheries and Food Trade Corporation on Sunday, the home meal replacement (HMR) market expanded 34.8 percent last year compared to 2015 to reach 2.2 trillion won ($2 billion).

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The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)

The Ground in Pohang Shifted 6.5 cm: Have Earthquakes Become a Regular Issue in the Southeast?

Have the faults in the southeast region of the Korean Peninsula awakened from a deep sleep? Powerful earthquakes struck the region two years in a row. According to the unmanned detection system of the Korea Forest Service, the soil layer shifted 6.5 centimeters in an hour due to the earthquake on November 15. Pier 1 at Pohang New Port sank almost 7 cm. Experts are busy discussing the Gyeongju earthquake last year and the Pohang earthquake on November 15. Some argue that the stress that had been accumulating for a long time has begun to erupt; others claim these earthquakes are the result of the Great East Japan Earthquake; and still others argue that we are now entering an era of stronger earthquakes throughout the world.

A Chilly Prosecution Service and a Cold Cheong Wa Dae Pushed Jun to the Edge

On November 16, the Cheong Wa Dae senior secretary for political affairs, Jun Byung-hun (59) stepped down. As the prosecutors' investigation narrowed its focus, Jun decided that remaining in his current position would not help the state administration of President Moon Jae-in. However, the disgraceful resignation of the first senior secretary for political affairs, a key position with actual power, will leave a scar on Cheong Wa Dae, which had stressed morality. This could also leave a blow on President Moon's drive to eradicate long-established irregularities.

Pohang Earthquake Shakes the Nation, CSAT Postponed for the First Time

On the afternoon of November 15, a strong earthquake occurred in Pohang, Gyeongsangbuk-do. This was the second strongest earthquake following the one in Gyeongju in September 2016. However, the epicenter was shallower than that of the Gyeongju earthquake, thus stronger vibrations could be felt farther away. Due to cracks running through some school buildings in Pohang where students were scheduled to take their College Scholastic Ability Test (CSAT), the 2018 CSAT, which was to be held on November 16, has been pushed back a week. This is the first time since the CSAT was introduced in 1993 that the test has been postponed due to unexpected factors.

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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.

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.

Oil Refiners See Good Times ahead due to Rising Oil Prices

International oil prices have hit a record high in seven months as they went up over US$50 a barrel. The domestic oil refining sector raised its hopes of improving their profitability in the third quarter after suffering poor results for two consecutive quarters. The spot price for Dubai crude as compiled by the Korea National Oil Corp. was $53.64 a barrel on September 16, up by 7 cents from the previous day. This is the highest level since February this year when the figure was $54.39.

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AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)

State rights watchdog urges schools to lift ban on mobile phone use

South Korea's state human rights watchdog urged elementary, middle and high schools to stop collecting mobile phones from students before the start of classroom hours, saying it breaches constitutional basic rights to freedom of communication.The recommendation Friday from the National Human Rights Commission followed a petition by an unidentified middle school student in Gyeonggi Province who challenged a campus by-law restricting the use of mobile phones.

Pyongyang on 'aggressive' schedule to build first operational SLBM submarine

New satellite imagery showed North Korea is on an "aggressive" schedule to build and deploy its first operational ballistic missile submarine, according to 38 North, the website of a U.S. research institute.

At its Sinpo naval base, North Korea has developed a submarine-launched ballistic missile and an SLBM submarine. Sinpo has been closely watched following the North's two ICBM tests in July. Earlier satellite imagery has revealed the continued movement of components in its parts yards."The continued movement of parts and components into and out of the parts yards adjacent to the construction halls indicates an ongoing shipbuilding program," 38 North said.

Northern California fire victim kills self in ruins on his home

Santa Rosa, California - It has been nearly a month since one of the deadliest fire in the history of California swept the wine country and other counties in Northern California. The fire took 43 lives and injured over 180 people. It destroyed approximately 8,900 buildings. Many people and businesses lost their livelihoods, families, and friends. A few videos emerged showing the ruins of residential areas, parks, and businesses. Some expressed their gratitude for having their lives saved and others said they felt so lost because they had to basically start from ground zero.

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Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)

Korean won hit year’s new high against U.S. dollar

The South Korean currency extended its rally against the U.S. dollar to hit a new high for this year during the session for a second consecutive day on Friday on growing expectations for the local economy partly due to easing geopolitical risk on the Korean peninsula. On Friday, the Korean won closed at 1,097.5 won against the U.S. dollar, gaining 3.9 won from the previous trading session. The local currency jumped to 1,093 won during the session, which was the highest for this year, after it opened at 1,097 won, the highest since September 2016.

Korea’s top 30 groups invested $53 bn in Jan-Sep 2017

South Korea’s top 30 conglomerates invested nearly 58 trillion won ($53 billion) in January-September this year, up 42.6 percent from the same period last year, led mainly by global memory chip giant Samsung Electronics’ heavy capital investment amid strong global demand for semiconductors. According to Seoul-based corporate evaluation website CEO Score on Sunday, capital expenditures of 261 companies affiliated to Korea’s 30 largest business groups in January-September period are estimated at 57.8 trillion won, up 42.6 percent from a year earlier. CEO Score compiled the data based on the quarterly reports filed by individual companies and the total figure does not include research and development spending.

iPhone X pre-orders sell out faster than iPhone 8 in S. Korea

Apple Inc.’s most expensive smartphone, the iPhone X whose first batch of shipments to South Korea were only about half of the iPhone 8 series, sold out within minutes on the first day of pre-orders in the country, significantly faster than the predecessor. SK Telecom Co., the country’s leading mobile carrier, said on Friday that the first batch of the iPhone X priced at 1.55 million won ($1,412) sold out in three minutes after it started taking pre-order online while the second batch in less than two minutes. It is significantly faster than the iPhone 7 series that sold out in 20 minutes in the first round and in one hour in the second round. The iPhone 8 series that began sales three weeks ago received tepid reception in Korea and stocks for its pre-orders lasted for a longer time.

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What’s ticking around the world at this second?

See what the world media around the world have to report:

USA Today www.usatoday.com aallman@gannett.com

The New York Times www.nytimes.com inytletters@nytimes.com

Wall Street Journal www.wsj.com support@wsj.com,service@wsj-asia.com

Financial Times www.ft.com ean@ft.com

The Times www.thetimes.co.uk help@timesplus.co.uk

The Sun www.thesun.co.uk talkback@the-sun.co.uk

Chinese People's Daily www.people.com.cnkf@people.cn

China Daily www.chinadaily.com.cn circulation@chinadaily.com.cn

GwangmyeongDaily www.gmw.cn webmaster@gmw.cn

Japan's Yomiuri www.yomiuri.co.jp japannews@yomiuri.com

Asahi www.asahi.com customer-support@asahi.com

Mainichi www.mainichi.jp

Le Monde www.ilemonde.com

Italy LaRepubblica www.quotidiano.repubblica.it vittorio.zucconi@gmail.com

Germany Frankfurter AllgemeineZeitung www.faz.net anzeigen.ausland@faz.de

SüddeutscheZeitung www.sueddeutsche.de forum@sueddeutsche.de

Australia Brisbane Times www.brisbanetimes.com.au syndication@fairfaxmedia.com.au

Sydney Morning Heraldwww.smh.com.au

Colombia Reports http://colombiareports.com

Bogota Free Planet http://bogotafreeplanet.combfp@bogotafreeplanet.com

El Universal http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/english

Andes http://www.andes.info.ec/en

Ecuador Times http://www.ecuadortimes.net

The Jordan Times https://www.jordantimes.com

LSM.lv http://www.lsm.lv/en

The Baltic Times http://www.baltictimes.comlithuania@baltictimes.com, estonia@baltictimes.com, editor@baltictimes.com

El Pais http://elpais.com/elpais/inenglish.html

Philippine Daily Inquirer https://www.inquirer.net

Daily News Hungary http://dailynewshungary.com

Budapest Times http://budapesttimes.hu

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The Korea Post is running video clips from the different embassies.

Azerbaijan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OR8CBpcQ4WM

Sri Lanka: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hByX92Y2aGY&t=22s

Morocco: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfFmp2sVvSE

And many other countries.

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Chairperson of Seoul Garden Club and doyenne of Korean Tea Culture Association

Mrs. Okcal hosts luncheon for spouses of ambassadors, noted Korean women leaders

Mrs. Pinar Okcal, spouse of the ambassador of Turkey in Seoul, hosted a luncheon at her residence in Seongbuk-dong, Seoul on June 9, 2017 for the leaders and members of the Seoul Garden Club.

The meeting was attended by the spouses of the ambassadors and leaders of the Club, including Chairperson Mrs. Kim Chong-sook of the Seoul Garden Club, and Korea’s traditional tea culture doyenne, Madam Myung Won Kim Mi-hee, who is the chairperson of the Myung Won Cultural Foundation. Among the other ladies present at the meeting were spouses of some of the ambassadors. They were Mrs. Konul Teymurova (spouse of the ambassador of Azerbaijan, concurrently the doyenne of the Association of the Spouses of the Ambassadors in Seoul), Mrs. Maria Leonor Roura Seminario (spouse of the ambassador of Ecuador), Mrs. Sarah Bile (spouse of the ambassador of Cote D'ivoire0, Mrs. Maria Claudia Latorre Mejia (spouse of the ambassador of Colombia), Mrs. Nehal Hanna (spouse of the ambassador of Egypt), Mrs. Ayako Nagamine (spouse of the ambassador of Japan), Mrs. Rina Okumura-Vaivara (spouse of the ambassador of Latvia), Mrs. Olga Wilfrida Centurion De Silvero (spouxe of the ambassador of Paraguay), Mrs. Ndeye Asiiatou Faye Ndiaye (spouse of the ambassador of Senegal), Mrs. Zhanna Baigaziyeva (spouse of the ambassador of Kazakhstan), and Mrs. Marina Nobre Quinteiro (spouse of the ambassador of Portugal).

From the media, Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of The Korea Post attended the meeting with his Reporter/photographer Kim Sung-min. It was a truly rare occasion to learn various aspects of the culture and art of Turkey, which included presentation of a video on modern art of Turkey.

To the Korean eyes, there were some revelations regarding flowers such as roses and tulips. According to the explanations of Mrs. Okcal, Turkish roses were a symbol of love and had a long history of curative, culinary and spiritual urses.

The slides shown to the participants included ‘Gui’ blossoming throughout the Turkish land and a target cultural studies for generations. The roses were also used in Turkey for the production of oils and perfumes as well as jams and sweets. There were rose water and rose oil. The next item of interest was Turkish tulips. Slides were shown, which included Lale, Tulip motives and an Istambul Tulip Festival.

Tulips, according to Mrs. Okcal, were widely used at the ancient palaces in Turkey for ornaments, clothes, carpets and rugs.

Seated in the front row are Mrs. Pinar Okcal, spouse of the ambassador of Turkey in Seoul flanked on the left by Chairperson Mrs. Kim Chong-sook of the Seoul Garden Club and on the right by Korean tea culture doyenne, Madam Myung Won Kim Mi-hee, who is the chairperson of the Myung Won Cultural Foundation.

In the rear row, from right, are Mrs. Marina Nobre Quinteiro (spouse of the ambassador of Portugal), Mrs. Zhanna Baigaziyeva (spouse of the ambassador of Kazakhstan), Mrs. Ndeye Asiiatou Faye Ndiaye (spouse of the ambassador of Senegal), Mrs. Olga Wilfrida Centurion De Silvero (spouxe of the ambassador of Paraguay), Mrs. Rina Okumura-Vaivara (spouse of the ambassador of Latvia), Mrs. Konul Teymurova (spouse of the ambassador of Azerbaijan, concurrently the doyenne of the Association of the Spouses of the Ambassadors in Seoul), Mrs. Ayako Nagamine (spouse of the ambassador of Japan), Mrs. Nehal Hanna (spouse of the ambassador of Egypt), Mrs. Maria Claudia Latorre Mejia (spouse of the ambassador of Colombia), Mrs. Sarah Bile (spouse of the ambassador of Cote D'ivoire, Mrs. Maria Leonor Roura Seminario (spouse of the ambassador of Ecuador). At far left is Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of The Korea Post (owning and operating 3 English and 2 Korean news media organizations)

Mrs. Pinar Okcal, spouse of the ambassador of Turkey (right), receives a basket of flowers from Chairperson Mrs. Kim Chong-sook of the Seoul Garden Club.

Turkish plates on display at the residence of Ambassador and Mrs. Okcal were ‘rare art pieces’ in the eyes of Publisher Lee of The Korea Post whose range of coverage included pottery while he was the Cultural Editor of The Korea Herald, Korea’s leading English daily founded in 1953.

Mrs. Okcal (right) watches as the guests pick up their favorite foods from the spread of traditional Turkish cuisine and beverage.

Traditional Turkish dessert “Lokum”

Lee Kyung-sik  edt@koeapost.com

<저작권자 © 코리아포스트, 무단 전재 및 재배포 금지>

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