The Korean daily media headlines and humor
The Korean daily media headlines and humor
  • Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2018.02.12 17:30
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The Korean daily media headlines and humor

Monday, February 12, 2018

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


Lee Kyung-sik


Korea Post Media


Says Ambassador Alexander Timonin of the Russian Federation in Seoul

Korea is our largest economic partner in Asia-Pacific with $18.9 bil. in turnover’

By Publisher Lee Kyung-sik with Reporters Kim Jung-mi, Sua Kim, Won Hwi

“The Republic of Korea is our large economic partner in the Asia-Pacific region and in 2017 our bilateral trade turnover amounted to 18.9 billion dollars, having increased by 41.4% as compared to 2016.” This statement was made by Ambassador Alexander A. Timonin of the Russian Federation in Seoul at a reception he and Madam Natalia Timonin hosted at the Grand Hall of the Embassy of the Russian Federation in Seoul on Feb. 6, 2018 in celebration of the Russian Diplomatic Service Day.

Ambassador Timonin then stated that the key areas of mutually beneficial economic cooperation with the Republic of Korea was the implementation of large-scale investment projects in the European part of the Russian Federation, as well as the creation of new industries in Siberia and the Russian Far East with the active use of advantages for foreign business within the Territory of Advanced Development and the Free Port of Vladivostok.

(For further details, visit:


Round-up of important news stories from major Korean dailies today:

The Korea Post media ( in English, ( in Korean.

N.K. says high-level delegation made 'meaningful' S. Korea trip for better ties

North Korea's state media said Monday its high-level delegation has made a "meaningful" trip to South Korea that improved stalled inter-Korean relations.The North's delegation led by its ceremonial head of state Kim Yong-nam returned home late Sunday after a three-day visit to the South for the PyeongChang Winter Olympics. Kim Yo-jong, the younger sister of the North's leader Kim Jong-un, delivered her brother's letter to President Moon Jae-in, which includes an invitation to Pyongyang at an early date."The latest trip by the high-level delegation served as an important occasion in improving relations between North and South Korea, and setting up an environment for peace on the Korean Peninsula," the state-run radio station reported.

Men's hockey players wary of Olympic pressure after watching women's loss

While the joint Korean women's hockey team was taking a beating against Switzerland at the PyeongChang Winter Olympics on Saturday, their male brethren was taking note.The unified team fell 8-0 to Switzerland, and head coach Sarah Murray and her players blamed the huge loss on nerves. After all, this was a young team -- 22 years old on average, the youngest in the tournament -- playing in its first Olympics.And members of the men's team who watched it unfold on television said first-game jitters could get to them too.

Pence says he and his 'friend' Moon reaffirmed commitment against N.K. nukes

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said he and his "friend," South Korean President Moon Jae-in, reaffirmed their commitment to denuclearizing North Korea.Pence met with Moon in South Korea last week when he led the U.S. delegation to the opening ceremony of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics.

"Honored to watch talented American & Korean athletes face off side-by-side with my friend, President Moon," the vice president tweeted shortly after leaving the country Saturday. "He & I both reaffirmed our commitment to the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. S. Korea stands shoulder-to-shoulder with the U.S & our allies."

Court to rule Tuesday on Park's friend in influence-peddling scandal

A Seoul court is scheduled to deliver its verdict this week on a woman at the center of a corruption scandal that led to the removal of former President Park Geun-hye from office early last year.The Seoul Central District Court will rule on Choi Soon-sil, Park's longtime friend and confidante, on Tuesday over 18 counts of corruption, including abuse of power, coercion and bribery.

She was indicted in November 2016 and has been under presentencing detention for forcing 50 business conglomerates to pay a combined 77.4 billion won (US$71.2 million) to two nonprofit foundations she allegedly controlled. She is accused of meddling in various state affairs, even though she held no official position or authority in the Park government, whose five-year term ended a year short following the Constitutional Court's ruling on Park's ousting last March.

Host wastes little time winning first gold; joint Korean hockey team falters

Host South Korea wasted little time picking up its first gold medal of these PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games, as short track speed skater Lim Hyo-jun won the men's 1,500-meter title.Lim crossed the finish line in an Olympic record time of 2:10.485 at Gangneung Ice Arena in Gangneung, the sub-host city of all ice events, on the first day of the competition on Saturday.This is Lim's first Olympics.Sjinkie Knegt of the Netherlands took the silver medal and Semen Elistratov of Olympic Athletes from Russia (OAR) finished third."I can't believe this. It's a big competition," said the 21-year old South Korean. "I stood at the top of the podium, but I didn't make it by myself. Coaches and other teammates trained hard together. I want to thank them all."



N. Korean High-level Delegation Returns Home after Olympic Tour

North Korea's high-level delegation returned home Sunday night after its three-day trip to South Korea. The 22-member delegation, including North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's sister Kim Yo-jong and the North's ceremonial head of state Kim Yong-nam, departed on a North Korean plane from Incheon International Airport at around 10:24 p.m.The delegation wrapped up its trip after attending the second and final concert of the North's Samjiyon Orchestra in Seoul, which started at 7 p.m. at the National Theater of Korea. President Moon Jae-in watched the concert along with Kim Yo-jong, Kim Yong-nam and head of the art troupe Hyon Song-wol, a North Korean pop icon.

NBC Sports Apologizes to Koreans for 'Insensitive' Comment

United States television network NBC Sports has apologized for insensitive remarks made by its correspondent relating to South Korea during the PyeongChang Winter Games' opening ceremony.​NBC Asian correspondent Joshua Cooper Ramo said on Friday during the Parade of Nations march by Japanese athletes at the opening ceremony that Japan is a country that occupied Korea from 1910 to 1945, but "every Korean" will tell you that Japan is a cultural, technological and economic example that has been so important to their own transformation.​The U.S. broadcaster came under fire after the correspondent made the comment as many Koreans in the United States and other viewers criticized the remark.The broadcaster issued an apology on Saturday for its incorrect and insensitive comment by its correspondent, which angered many South Koreans.

S. Korea's National Debt Per Capita Tops 13 Million Won

South Korea's per capita national debt has surpassed 13 million won.

The National Assembly Budget Office said on Sunday that as of Saturday, the national debt stood at 671-point-five trillion won, up four-point-six trillion won from late last year. The national debt increased two-point-two times from 2008, when it marked 309 trillion won.The nation's per capita national debt also increased two-point-one times over the period to exceed 13 million won. ​The budget office estimated the national debt will increase to 708-point-two trillion won by the end of this year, based on the size of the country's budget for 2018. It said that the national debt is growing by one-point-31 million won every second.


Yonhap (

S. Korea to seek investor protection measures in FTA talks with China

South Korea's trade ministry said Monday it will seek ways to better protect investor rights from arbitrary regulations when holding talks with China to expand the scope of the two countries' free trade agreement (FTA) to the service and investment sector.The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy said it will push for the FTA talks in a way that creates new business opportunities for local companies in the tourism, culture, legal and medical industries. South Korea and China implemented the FTA focused on lowering tariffs on goods in December 2015 and are set to engage in talks to include the service and investment sectors. "We will pave the way for Korean companies to enter the rapidly growing Chinese service market and push for establishing effective investor protection measures for local companies that invest in China," the ministry said in a report submitted to the National Assembly.

Short tracker takes aim at 1st gold

South Korean short track speed skating star Choi Min-jeong will take aim at her first Olympic gold medal in the women's 500 meters on Tuesday.Choi will begin her quest in the quarterfinals at Gangneung Ice Arena in Gangneung, with the final scheduled for later in the evening should Choi reach that deep.South Korea has long been a short track powerhouse with 21 Olympic gold medals, but no victories in the women's 500m. Choi, who set an Olympic record with 42.870 in Saturday's heats, will look to end the drought.

LG's OLED TV sales exceed 14,000 units in Jan.

LG Electronics Inc. said Monday its domestic sales of high-end organic light-emitting diode (OLED) TVs surpassed the 14,000 unit mark last month.The sales figure means that the South Korean tech giant sold one OLED TV every three minutes last month.In comparison, LG Electronics sold about 5,000 units of OLED TVs in January 2017.The growth of OLED TVs was driven by sales of large-sized TVs, including 65-inch models, the company said.LG said its 55-inch OLED TVs are currently priced between 2.39 million won (US$2,200) and 3.09 million won, down from 15 million won in 2013.

LG Electronics has been promoting OLED TVs, which boast improved resolution by having each pixel on the screen emit light. Such products are capable of expressing complete black and vivid colors compared with LCD products, which need backlights.


The Korea Herald (

NK leader's sister wraps up whirlwind Olympics tour

North Korea’s high-level delegation, including the sister of the North Korean leader, wrapped-up its three-day trip in South Korea on Sunday, after extending an invitation to President Moon Jae-in for a summit in Pyongyang. The 22-member delegation led by the country’s ceremonial head of state Kim Yong-nam, headed off to Incheon International Airport to board a flight back to North Korea. The delegation made the return flight via the same private jet that brought them here on Friday -- provided by North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

Can allies present united front to NK’s proposal of inter-Korea talk?

With North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un having invited President Moon Jae-in to Pyongyang for a summit, the focus is now on how South Korea can coordinate with the United States to leverage the initiative as an opportunity for denuclearization talks. The allies appeared to agree that North Korea should make progress on denuclearization before a summit can be held. Moon said he would accept the summit meeting under the right conditions, suggesting Pyongyang should do more to open direct US-North Korea talks on denuclearization.However, challenges loom large as the allies may clash over the approaches to achieving the goal of denuclearization, analysts said, as Moon may face a tough choice between going along with Trump‘s “maximum pressure” campaign and engaging with the North to ease cross-border tensions after the Olympics.

North Korean troupe packs something extra for Seoul performance

As North Korea’s Samjiyon Orchestra neared the end of its Seoul performance on Sunday, its leader Hyon Song-wol stepped on to the stage and grabbed the microphone. “I’ve crossed the inter-Korean borders twice to come here to the South. It pained me to realize that the distance between Pyongyang and Seoul is so close but it feels so far away,” Hyon said as she announced that she will sing a song herself. “I’ve caught a cold in Gangneung and am in terrible condition, but as I’m the leader (of Samjiyon), I ask for a particularly big round of applause.”


The Korea Times (

It's not Olympics but Polympics

Different from the case of NBC, the U.S. main Olympic broadcaster which mistook the host city, PyeongChang, as being in North Korea, there is a conspicuous reason that the quadrennial event in the South Korean city is not what is expected of a typical Olympics.It deserves to be called "Polympics" with a capital P standing for politics of a complicated brand ― with fierce, divisive, unifying and confusing elements ― which may reset the existing order on the Korean Peninsula and affect the global one, as well.

The fierce element was made in plain sight when South Korea put all it had on the line and persuaded the United States and by extension Japan to delay the annual ROK-U.S. military drills that would have occurred during the Olympics. U.S. President Donald Trump reluctantly conceded to the combination of pleas and threats by President Moon Jae-in to delay the drills until after the PyeongChang Games.

Korean-Canadian caught for botched Molotov cocktail attack on US embassy in Seoul

A Korean-Canadian man has been arrested for a botched Molotov cocktail attack on the U.S. embassy in Seoul, police said Monday. The man, in his 30s, reportedly told police the attack was to punish the United States, which "has bullied South Korea and me." He is known to have a mental disorder.

According to Jongno Police Station, which is in charge of the embassy's external security, the man lit a handmade Molotov cocktail just outside the barbed wire fence encircling the embassy and was about to throw the fire bomb over the fence at 7 p.m. Sunday.But he accidently dropped the Molotov cocktail into a bag filled with nine other Molotov cocktails, and set them all alight. He threw away the burning bag and fled, but was caught by police who rushed to the scene.

South Korean FM vows 'creative diplomacy' to keep peace after Olympics

South Korea's top diplomat promised to pull through new diplomatic challenges actively and creatively Monday after North Korea invited the South's president to an inter-Korean summit."There is a new diplomatic situation waiting for the foreign ministry after the PyeongChang Olympics," Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha told the newly appointed heads of overseas missions. "We need to muster all the power of our ministry to turn things around and move them forward."


Chosun Ilbo (

Kim Jong-un's Sister Invites Moon to Pyongyang

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's sister Yo-jong on Saturday delivered an invitation to Pyongyang from her brother to President Moon Jae-in. Moon met with Kim Yo-jong for about two hours and 40 minutes at Cheong Wa Dae. Moon was quoted as saying, "Let's create the conditions to make it possible." Over lunch, Moon also said, "U.S.-North Korean dialogue must be held soon in order for inter-Korean relations to progress."

N.Korean Ship Returns Without Refueling

The Mangyongbong-92, a North Korean ship that had transported an orchestra to South Korea for performances marking the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, left Mukho port in Gangwon Province on Saturday without taking on any fuel supplies. The day before its departure, the North withdrew an earlier request for fuel to the South Korean government, according to the Unification Ministry. The North made the request right after the ship's arrival on Feb. 6. The ministry had originally intended to provide fuel for the ship as it did during the Busan Asian Games in 2002 but changed its mind after it was pointed out that this could violate international sanctions against the North.

N.Korean Apparatchik Hyon Song-wol Sings Finale at Seoul Concert

A North Korean delegation led by leader Kim Jong-un's sister Yo-jong had dinner with Cheong Wa Dae chief of staff Im Jong-seok on Sunday before watching the North's Samjiyeon Orchestra perform in Seoul. Kim Yo-jong sat next to President Moon Jae-in during the performance in what was their fourth meeting during her three-day visit. The orchestra performed a medley of songs, with bandleader-cum-apparatchik Hyon Song-wol taking the stage to sing the finale. After Hyon's song ended, Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon jumped to his feet and shouted "encore!" Seo-hyun of girl band Girls' Generation unexpectedly appeared and joined the North Korean performers in singing "Our Hope is Unification," which drew thunderous applause. Seo and one of the North Korean singers embraced.


HanKyoReh Shinmun (

Rousing standing ovation greets Korean athletes during joint entrance at Pyeongchang Olympics

Waves of lights from candle-shaped lanterns swept through the stands as the strains of the traditional song "Arirang" played. It was an expression of the desire for peace and of mutual respect.The more than 180 members of the unified group of athletes from South Korea and North Korea were the last to enter Pyeongchang's Olympic Stadium in the Parade of Nations on Feb. 9, and as they marched in, all 35,000 spectators who filled the stands rose to their feet, welcoming them with applause and cheers. Entering behind the Unified Peninsula Flag, carried by South Korea's bobsledder Won Yun-jong and North Korean hockey player Hwang Chung-gum, the joint team of athletes responded by waving their hands at the crowds in the stands.

Spectacular scenes from the Pyeongchang Olympics opening ceremony

The Pyeongchang Olympics opened in dazzling fashion, with a variety of artistic performances that expressed the themes of unification of peace on the Korean Peninsula. K-pop singers performed a rendition of John Lennon’s song, “Imagine,” and a light show with the theme of “A Future for Everyone” lit up the cold night sky above the stadium. There was the also the entrance of Olympic athletes from the 92 participating countries, including a joint entrance of South and North Korean athletes under the Unification Flag. There were also 1,218 drones that were used as part of the ceremony to assist with the visual effects.

A controversy from which lessons can be learned - on all sides

Over the weekend, a controversy erupted in political and media circles over a Hankyoreh editorial that appeared on the newspaper’s English edition website. The editorial in question referenced an article from that day’s Korean version of the newspaper in which Matthew Pottinger, the White House National Security Council’s senior director for Asian affairs, reportedly said that a US strike on North Korea might be beneficial to President Trump in the midterm Congressional elections. This quote was picked up by the Wall Street Journal’s Seoul correspondent, Jonathan Cheng, whose Twitter post about it set off a firestorm, particularly after it was noticed by White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders.


JoongAng Ilbo (

Kim’s summit invite puts Moon in a tough spot

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s invitation to South Korean President Moon Jae-in for a summit in Pyongyang - relayed on Saturday by Kim’s sister - represents an olive branch to Seoul after a year of escalating tensions and could be a breakthrough in Moon’s North Korea policy that values dialogue with the reclusive state. But it will also put Moon’s arbitration ability to the test as he finds himself caught between his desire to engage with Kim Jong-un and the United States’ continued stance that North Korea ought to face tougher pressure and harsher sanctions. Losing either side could lead to catastrophic consequences, analysts say. “By now, the United States will be cautiously gauging whether the improvement of North-South relations will be helpful in getting North Korea to denuclearize,” said Kim Yong-hyun, a professor of North Korean studies at Dongguk University in Seoul.

Pohang wakes up to another powerful quake

After a 4.6-magnitude earthquake shook the North Gyeongsang city of Pohang on Sunday morning, the same city that was hit by the 5.4-magnitude quake just three months ago, experts warned that stronger quakes may be coming to the region as the faults shift underground.“The aftershocks following the quake in November have increased this month and Pohang was hit by the strongest aftershock ever on Sunday,” Hong Tae-kyung, professor of earth system sciences at Yonsei University in western Seoul, told the JoongAng Ilbo. “My analysis is that the seismic stress seems to be growing over time and as the stratum isn’t able to hold up the stress, the city is being hit by stronger and stronger aftershocks.

KITA spotlights eight job-creating sectors

Eight emerging industries, including robots and electric cars, generated $73.6 billion in sales from exports and around 415,000 jobs last year, a report from the Korea International Trade Association said Sunday.

These eight are among 12 “new industries” selected by the government in late 2016 to lead the so-called fourth industrial revolution. From the list, the trade promotion agency selected eight for which export figures are available: electric cars, robots, bio health, aerospace, new energy sources, advanced materials, OLED displays and semiconductors.


The KyungHyang Shinmun (

Politicians Support "Me Too": Justice Party Releases an Apology

The "Me Too" movement is spreading to the political circle. A progressive party voluntarily released a sexual assault incident that had occurred within the party and vowed to prevent recurrence, while the ruling Minjoo Party of Korea decided to educate its lawmakers on sexual awareness.On February 8, Justice Party leader Lee Jeong-mi held a press conference at the National Assembly and announced, "Many incidents of sexual assault had occurred within the Justice Party, which aims to achieve gender equality," and explained that the party ended up forcing the victim to suffer secondary damages in the process of handling a sexual assault case in the party. She added that the party suspended the person responsible for the incident from her position.

What the Relatively Small-Scale Military Parade in North Korea Signifies

On the morning of February 8, North Korea displayed a military parade celebrating the 70th anniversary of its military at Kim Il-sung Square. The parade time was shorter than last year, and so was its scale. North Korea did not invite the foreign press, and they broadcast a recording of the parade instead of airing it live on TV. This was in contrast with how North Korea had invited 130 members of the foreign press at the military parade on April 15, 2017, the 105th anniversary of the birthday of Kim Il-sung. Last year, the Korean Central TV broadcast the event live.However, North Korea disclosed Hwasong-14 and Hwasong-15, intercontinental ballistic missiles and strategic weapons capable of hitting the U.S. mainland.

North Korea's Kim Yo-jong Is Coming to PyeongChang: Will She Be KIm Jong-un's Messenger?

Kim Yo-jong (photo), the deputy director of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea and the younger sister of Kim Jong-un, chairman of the Workers' Party of Korea will join the senior-level delegation of North Korea, scheduled to visit South Korea on February 9-11 to attend the PyeongChang Winter Olympics. On February 7, the Ministry of Unification announced that North Korea informed them of the names of the high-level delegation led by Kim Yong-nam, chairman of the Supreme People's Assembly. The list included Kim Yo-jong; Choe Hwi, vice chairman of the Workers' Party of Korea; and Ri Son-kwon, chairman of the Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Fatherland. Choe also serves as the chairman of the National Sports Guidance Committee, and Ri is North Korea's chief delegate in the senior-level talks with South Korea. This day, North Korea also sent a list of assistants to the delegation comprised of sixteen guides including Ri Taek-gon and Kim Song-hye and three members of the press.


AJU Business Daily (

Seohyun captures audience with emotional performance with N. Koreans

It was a highly emotional night that highlighted the sadness and deep resentment of Korean people split by the superpowers after decades of brutal colonial rule by Japan.There was no political theme and all participants including South Korean President Moon Jae-in, North Korea's ceremonial head of state Kim Yong-nam and Kim Yo-jong, the young sister of Pyongyang's authoritarian ruler Kim Jong-un could not suppress their passion to sing together for unification. The grand finale of the concert Sunday night at the National Theater of Korea in Seoul came when Seohyun, a member of South Korea's popular K-pop girl band Girls' Generation, made a surprise appearance on stage after North Korea's 140-member art troupe who mesmerized a South Korean audience with rare performances of traditional and modern music.

S. Korean spy agency accuses N. Korean hackers of stealing virtual money

North Korean hackers are suspected of having launched a cyber attack on South Korean virtual money exchanges to steal cryptocurrencies and at least one exchange suffered a substantial damage last year, the South's main spy agency said Monday in a report to parliament.The National Intelligence Service (NIS) told a parliamentary intelligence committee that North Korean hackers have attacked cryptocurrency exchanges, according to Kim Byung-ki, a ruling Democratic Party legislator who participated in the committee's closed session.NIS officials were quoted as saying that in one attack last year, North Korean hackers sent hacking e-mails to an unnamed virtual currency in South Korea to steal passwords of clients and took away virtual money worth tens of billions won by using the technology of a famous security company to neutralize vaccines.

S. Korea unveils space program plan to send probe to Moon in 2030

South Korea unveiled a revised space program Monday to launch an indigenous three-stage rocket in 2020 and send an unmanned probe to the Moon by 2030 despite slow progress in the development of space technologies and lack of experience.Initially, South Korea had planned to complete the development of a two-stage test rocket by 2017, but the test launch has been delayed due to technical glitches. There has been slow progress in the country's space program as other countries are reluctant to transfer core technologies.Under a fresh roadmap presented by the Ministry of Science and Technology, South Korea plans to send an unmanned orbital probe to the Moon by 2020 and land an unmanned lunar probe to the surface of the Moon by 2030.South Korea's space technology is far behind leading countries, Lee Young-ho, a deputy director at the ministry's policy-making department, told Aju News. "Because no country wants to share core technologies related to space traveling, we have to gain experience and teach ourselves."


Maeil Business News Korea (

Hyundai Heavy posts $316 mn loss in Q4

South Korea’s largest shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries Co. finished the fourth quarter of 2017 in the red, hit by a strong won and higher prices of steel plate supplies. According to its regulatory filing on Friday, the company posted an operating loss of 342.2 billion won ($316.1 million) in the quarter ended December. Sales were down 32.9 percent on year to 3.39 trillion won.

For the full 2017, its operating profit on a consolidated basis plunged 96.3 percent on year to 14.6 billion won. Sales fell 30.6 percent to 15.5 trillion won. Net loss totaled 93.4 billion won. The conglomerate spun off non-shipbuilding units last year, delivering poorer figures in the income statement, but improvement in the balance sheet.

HMM forms consortium with largest shippers to bolster services to Latin America

South Korea’s leading container carrier Hyundai Merchant Marine Co. (HMM) has established a consortium with Switzerland’s Mediterranean Shipping Co., Germany’s Hapag-Lloyd and Japan’s Ocean Network Express (ONE), a joint venture of three Japanese container carriers, to reorganize its services connecting Asia to the West Coast of Latin America. The consortium will begin servicing three routes passing Korea, China, Japan, Taiwan, Mexico, Peru, Chile and Colombia in early April after ironing out detailed plans next month. An official from HMM said that it will work hard to strengthen its presence in the Asia to Latin America routes and raise profitability.

Korea’s top 4 banks cut nearly 2,400 workers in the past 7 mos

South Korean banks streamlined payroll despite record earnings last year as they reduce brick-and-mortar operation and focus more on automated and digital services. The country’s top four lenders KB Kookmin, Shinhan, KEB Hana, and Woori Bank shed about 2,400 employees through voluntary early retirement incentives from the second half of last year to January. Severance payout reached 1.04 trillion won ($960.7 million). As many as 1,011 employees opted for early retirement from Woori Bank in July alone, compared with annual average of 300 in the previous year and in the first half of 2017. Payroll was reduced to 14,356 from 15,649 in 2016. The bank compensated 178 billion won to early retirees, up 68.5 percent from a year earlier.


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