UPDATE : 2018.9.26 WED 10:44
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Headlines, July 6, 2018

Friday, July 6, 2018

Round-up of important news from major Korean, international dailies, other news sources today:

The Korea Post media (www.koreapost.com) in English, (www.koreapost.co.kr) in Korean.
S. Korea vows stepped up efforts to accelerate Moon's Berlin peace initiative
South Korea will continue to push for President Moon Jae-in's peace initiative that seeks to peacefully and completely denuclearize the Korean Peninsula by removing any reasons for North Korea to possess nuclear weapons, the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae said Friday. The renewed pledge came one year after the South Korean president unveiled the so-called "Berlin Initiative" while attending the Group of 20 summit in the German capital.

Samsung's operating profit up 5.19 pct in Q2
Samsung Electronics Co. said Friday its second-quarter operating profit advanced 5.19 percent from a year earlier, but it failed to post record-breaking earnings apparently due to weaker-than-expected smartphone sales. Operating profit for the three-month period came to 14.8 trillion won (US$13.2 billion), compared with 14.07 trillion won reported a year earlier, the company said in its earnings guidance report. Sales came to 58 trillion won, down 4.92 percent on-year.

S. Korean bizmen to again seek gov't approval to visit N. Korea
South Korean businessmen who operated factories at the now-shuttered joint industrial complex in North Korea will again ask the government to allow them to visit the park to inspect their facilities, their representative said Friday. "We have decided to ask the government again next week," said Shin Han-yong, the head of a private task force that speaks on behalf of more than 120 South Korean companies. "We hope for a prompt resumption of the factory park."
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KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)
Pompeo Vows to Work toward 'Final, Fully Verified Denuclearization'

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has reaffirmed his commitment to the "final, fully verified denuclearization" of North Korea, as he left for Pyongyang for nuclear talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Pompeo boarded a plane at Joint Base Andrews just outside of Washington on Thursday on his first trip to Pyongyang since his visit last month to prepare for the historic summit between Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump.

Court Rejects Arrest Warrant for Korean Air Chief
A Seoul court has refused to issue an arrest warrant for Korean Air and Hanjin Group Chairman Cho Yang-ho on embezzlement, tax evasion and other charges. The Seoul Southern District Court on early Friday denied the writ against Cho, saying that it is difficult to acknowledge the need to place the suspect in detention, given that the accusations are disputable and the court needs to guarantee his right to defense.

Gov't Increases Housing Assistance for Newlyweds, Youth
The Moon Jae-in administration plans to provide housing service assistance for more than one-point-six million households made up of newlyweds and young people before the end of its term. The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport and the Ministry of the Interior and Safety on Thursday announced a set of measures to relieve the financial burden of housing costs for the newly married and the younger generation.
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Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)
Trump voices hope in Kim's commitment to denuclearize
U.S. President Donald Trump expressed hope Thursday that North Korea will take the path to denuclearization, saying he believes leader Kim Jong-un wants a different future for his country. Trump spoke to reporters aboard Air Force One en route to a Montana rally as U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was flying to Pyongyang to hammer out details of a nuclear disarmament deal struck by Trump and Kim last month.

Visitors to foreign-only casinos dip in 2017 on THAAD fallout
The number of visitors to foreigners-only casinos in South Korea fell for a third year in 2017 due mainly to the fallout of a Sino-Korean row over a missile defense system, government data showed Friday. The 16 casinos reserved for foreigners attracted 2.22 million visitors last year, down 6.2 percent from the previous year, according to the data from the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. It marks the third consecutive year that the number of visitors to foreigners-only casinos has declined on an on-year basis.

Number of 'offshore funds' top 1,000 mark
The number of foreign-managed overseas investment funds registered with South Korea has topped the 1,000 mark as more local investors set their sights on markets abroad in search of higher returns, the financial regulator said Friday. A total of 1,040 "offshore" funds were registered with the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) as of the end of April, up from 969 last year and an all-time high.
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The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
Challenges loom large for Pompeo in Pyongyang

With US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo heading to Pyongyang to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, how much progress they can make on denuclearization remains the most pressing question amid persistent doubts over Kim’s pledge to completely abandon the country’s nuclear program. Pompeo was set to arrive in Pyongyang on Friday and continue ongoing denuclearization negotiations with North Korea. It is Pompeo’s third known trip to North Korea and the first one since last month’s US-North Korea summit in Singapore.

US import curbs to deal heavy blow on S. Korean economy: report
The looming US import curbs including tariffs and quotas on South Korean goods are expected to take a toll on Korea’s economic indicators, a report showed Thursday. In the wake of regulatory measures starting this year on steel, washing machines and solar cells, Seoul is likely to see some $2.5 billion cut in exports and 16,000 potential job losses here and abroad.

Seoul to support single parents, common-law couples to boost chronically low birthrate
Seoul on Thursday introduced a set of measures to boost the country’s chronically low birthrate, including more support programs for single parents and infertility treatment coverage for common-law couples. The measures reflect the Moon Jae-in government’s espousal of diverse forms of families, in a country where single parenthood and common-law marriages are still often stigmatized.
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The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
Is NK leader facing setback due to military?

Speculation is rising that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is facing a setback in his plan to focus on economic development by giving up his country's nuclear weapons, due to opposition from hardliners in the military. After some U.S. media reports, citing intelligence sources, claimed the North was secretly continuing its nuclear activities, suspicions emerged that the hardliners who are against denuclearization were behind this. These have arisen as the denuclearization negotiations between the U.S. and North Korea have been stalled for weeks.

USFK to drastically layoff Korean employees
Hundreds of Koreans working on U.S. military bases are on the verge of losing their jobs, as most of these are being merged and relocated to the new headquarters of the U.S. Forces Korea (USFK). Last week, Camp Humphreys officially opened, replacing Yongsan Garrison in central Seoul, and will be home to more than half of the 28,500 U.S. troops stationed in Korea. Most U.S. forces located in the northern part of Gyeonggi Province, including the 2nd Infantry Division (2ID) at Camp Casey in Dongducheon, are scheduled to move to Pyeongtaek by the end of the year or early next year.

Vatican archbishop visits inter-Korean border
The Vatican's top diplomat on Thursday voiced optimism for ongoing diplomacy to foster a lasting peace on the peninsula, saying "many good things" will be achieved despite challenges down the road. Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, the Vatican's secretary for relations with states, delivered a message of hope for Koreans, as he toured the Joint Security Area (JSA) close to the heavily fortified inter-Korean border.
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Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
More Businesses Move Factories Overseas

A growing number of businesses are cutting back on domestic investment and moving their factories overseas. Overseas investment by Korean businesses accounted for only 10 percent of corporate spending in the early 2000s but now exceeds 30 percent. The trend shows just how much the environment for domestic investment has deteriorated.

Rising Oil Prices Fuel Inflationary Pressure
Rising international oil prices have led to a surge in the prices of related products and other manufactured goods, increasing the financial burden on households. Statistics Korea said Tuesday that consumer prices in June grew 1.5 percent compared to a year ago, mainly due to rising oil prices. Prices of petroleum products rose 10 percent, the steepest growth in a year and two months. The price of Dubai crude jumped 37 percent on-year in June to US$73.4 a barrel, pushing prices of manufactured goods up 1.8 percent and transportation up 4.1 percent.

Korea's Online Shopping Market Flourishes
Korea's online shopping market is forecast to reach some W190 trillion in 2022, twice as big as last year's W78 trillion (US$1=W1,117). According to a report by the Korea Information Society Development Institute on Wednesday, the online shopping market grew at an average of 19.4 percent annually over the last five years. At that rate, it is expected to surpass W100 trillion next year and reach W189.8 trillion in 2022.
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HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
Moon launches committee to commemorate 100th anniversary of Mar. 1 Movement

On July 3, South Korean President Moon Jae-in launched the Presidential Committee to Commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the Mar. 1 Movement and the Establishment of the Provisional Government of the Republic of Korea, reflecting his strong desire to identify the independence movement and justice-minded citizens as the mainstream of the Republic of Korea. He also made clear that he intends for next year, which marks the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the provisional government, to be a turning point in establishing a peace regime on the Korean Peninsula.

Religious leaders call for South Koreans to embrace Yemeni asylum seekers
Protestant ministers are drawing attention for their efforts actively calling for reflection from Christians on the issue of Yemeni refugees, sending the message that exclusion of the asylum seekers is “not the will of God” amid claims that organized opposition to Yemeni refugees from some conservative Christian groups has helped foster a wider climate of anti-refugee sentiment in South Korea. With these efforts, calls to heed a humanist message and overcome the “Islamophobia” fostered by megachurches and others are now echoing from within the church.

Financial expert suggests trust fund support for NK’s early development
Export-Import Bank of Korea director Eun Sung-soo (pictured) said the international community could apply the “Palestinian example” of trust fund support for North Korea’s early development funding prior to its admission to international financial institutions. In a talk with reporters for the second half of 2018 at the Korea Federation of Banks in Seoul’s Myeong-dong neighborhood on July 3, Eun fielded questions on the “scale and methods” of financial support for North Korea’s development.
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The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)
N. Korea waivers expenses for returning U.S. troop remains
As North Korea will likely repatriate the remains of U.S. troops killed during the 1950-1953 Korean War in synch with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s planned visit to Pyongyang on Friday, Pyongyang has informed Washington that it would not charge the repatriation expenses as it did in the past. According to multiple sources on North Korea, the North did not demand that Washington pay for the repatriation while negotiating with the United States over returning the remains of some 200 U.S. troops killed in action.

A mid-summer night palace tour to operate from Friday
Suwon City of Gyeonggi Province announced on Wednesday that it will operate “a mid-summer night’s palace,” a night-time tour where people can enjoy the night scenery of Suwon Hwaseong, from Friday to September 1. A bicycle taxi will take people to famous places of Suwon Hwaweong, with the driver telling people interesting history and culture and helping people take pictures when they get off at places of their choice.

A forum is created to recover cultural homogeneity with N. Korea
An inter-Korean commission for theatre exchange has been founded. The Seoul Drama Association announced Wednesday that the new commission will replace the Inter-Korean Commission for the Promotion of Theatre Exchange, which was founded in December last year. The commission is headed by Lee Hae-sung, who leaders the Theatre Company Gorae. Members of the advisory committee include playwright Noh Kyung-sik, director Chae Seung-hoon, playwright Oh Tae-young, and professor Kim Jung-soo of the Institute of Unification Education.
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JoongAng Ilbo (http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/)
Bakery franchises join the battle against plastic cups, bags

Korean bakeries and franchises are joining the global campaign to fight plastic pollution. Earlier this week, Korea’s biggest bakery brands announced they would introduce eco-friendly measures to reduce plastic bag and cup consumption in celebration of the ninth International Plastic Bag Free Day. Paris Baguette and Tous Les Jours signed a voluntary agreement Monday with the Ministry of Environment and the Korea Federation for Environmental Movement to dramatically reduce their use of plastic bags.

U.S. stance on timetable for North keeps altering
The U.S. State Department said Tuesday it wouldn’t “provide a timeline” for North Korea to complete its denuclearization, an apparent rebuke of John Bolton’s remarks earlier that the North could finish the process “within a year.” “In terms of a timeline, I know some individuals have given timelines,” said Heather Nauert, the spokeswoman of the State Department at a press briefing Tuesday, apparently referring to Bolton, the U.S. national security adviser.

Asiana chief defends change in supplier
Kumho Asiana Group Chairman Park Sam-koo rebutted claims that the company changed its in-flight meal supplier in exchange for a 160 billion won ($143 million) investment in the group’s holding company. Park’s comments came during a hastily arranged press conference Wednesday to apologize for the recent no-meal debacle that ultimately led to the apparent suicide of the CEO of a subcontractor.
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The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Pro-Moon "Owl Gathering" Highlighted: Raising an Alarm on Factionalism

Voices warn of factionalism in the Democratic Party of Korea as the party prepares to elect its next leader in the August 25 party congress some fifty days away. After the last presidential election, the Democratic Party became a "pro-Moon" party, fully supporting President Moon Jae-in, but some people argue that the party may see a return of the division between pro-Moon and non-Moon members at the party congress. Some candidates claim they are pro-Moon fueling such concerns.

Supreme Court Justice Candidates: A Lawyer and Two Judges Including a Woman
Attorney Kim Seon-soo (57, 17th class of the Judicial Research and Training Institute); Lee Dong-won (55, 17th class), chief judge of the Jeju District Court; and Noh Jeong-hee (54, 19th class), director of the Court Library have been recommended as candidates to replace Supreme Court justices Ko Young-han, Kim Chang-suk and Kim Shin, who will retire on August 2. Kim is a labor and human rights lawyer who had kept away from public office, and Lee and Noh are judges who did not graduate from Seoul National University and who have no experience of working at the National Court Administration.

Current 9th Graders Can Apply to Both Autonomous Private High Schools and General High Schools
The Constitutional Court accepted the request for a provisional injunction to suspend the enforcement of the Enforcement Decree of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which was amended to have students choose and apply to either an autonomous private high school or a general high school. Therefore, students currently in the ninth grade will probably be able to apply to both autonomous private schools and general schools in the late admissions process. In this case, confusion can occur when a student is accepted by both an autonomous private high school and a general high school, so it is likely for the government to return to the existing method of having students first apply to an autonomous high school in the early admissions process.
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AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)
S. Korea's top web portal introduces new voices synthesis technology
Naver, South Korea's top web portal service, boasted about its new AI-based voice synthesis technology claiming it requires a smaller number of sample voices than that of Google's. The voice synthesis technology is seen as vital for the Fourth Industrial Revolution along with AI and big data. Google introduced Duplex, an AI-based voice synthesis engine which can carry out natural conversations by mimicking the human voice.

Security experts warn against malicious emails disguised as government documents
Security experts accused a hacking group Wednesday of launching a cyber attack with malicious emails disguised as a South Korean government document, targeting North Korea-related organizations, as the two Koreas are set to resume the reunions of separated families. The attack coincided with a process to confirm the whereabouts of South Koreans wanted by their North Korean relatives for family reunions. The two Koreas agreed to hold reunions involving 100 families from each side from August 20-26 at the North's Mount Kumgang resort.

Korean Air pilots and employees sue group boss and son
Unionized Korean Air pilots, employees and activists joined forces to file complaints with prosecutors Wednesday, accusing Hanjin Group chairman Cho Yang-ho and his son of taking private interests through the unfair transfer of trademark rights. They demanded an investigation of Korean Air president Cho won-tae, 42, and his father for a breach of trust, insisting the country's top flag carrier has paid some 136.4 billion won ($122 million) in trademark royalties to Hanjin KAL since the airline transferred its trademark rights to the group's holding company in 2013.
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Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
FDI commitment in S. Korea surge to a record high in H1
Foreign direct investment to South Korea in the first six months of this year hit an all-time high thanks to Chinese investors’ insatiable appetite for Korean businesses and active merger and acquisition deals in the retail and food industries. If the current trend continues, Asia’s fourth-largest economy is expected to attract $20 billion or more in annual foreign direct investment for a fourth year in a row in 2018.

Hyundai Motor invests in Australian car-sharing firm Car Next Door
South Korea’s top automaker Hyundai Motor Co. has joined hands with an Australian car-sharing firm to develop a smartphone application that utilizes cutting-edge Internet of Things (IoT) technology to provide consumers with more convenient car-sharing service. Hyundai Motor said on Wednesday that it has invested in Car Next Door and entered into mutual partnership to introduce mobility service of a new concept in 2020 utilizing cutting-edge information communications technology.

Renault Samsung contributes more to foster Korean automotive component startups
Renault Samsung Motors Co., the South Korean unit of French carmaker Renault S.A., Wednesday said it will contribute 15 billion won ($13.4 million) to a public-private investment program aimed to foster car component industry. The carmaker said it will work together with the Ministry of Small and Medium-Sized Ventures and Enterprises and other stakeholders to raise the fund and support SMEs to continue technology development.
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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.cn kf@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 Herald www.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.com lithuania@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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Lee Kyung-sik  edt@koreapost.com

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