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Headlines, August 31, 2018

Friday, August 31, 2018

Round-up of important news from major Korean dailies today and from international media:

The Korea Post media (www.koreapost.com) in English, (www.koreapost.co.kr) in Korean.
Moon urges local governments' efforts to create jobs
President Moon Jae-in on Thursday urged local governments to step up their own efforts to create more jobs while promising increased support from the central government. "The people's concerns are growing due to a drop in recent job indicators. Many regions are also facing difficulties from the fallout of restructuring. Creating jobs, especially good jobs, is the current issue facing both the central and local governments," the president said in a meeting with the heads of 17 provincial and metropolitan city governments.

Users of Galaxy S7 complain about boot loop after OS update
A number of South Korean users of Samsung Electronics Co.'s Galaxy S7 raised issue with their smartphones suffering from a boot loop after updating to Android 8.0 Oreo, industry sources in Seoul said Friday. An insider at Samsung Electronics said it is currently carrying out a probe to check if the error is being caused by the update or due to other reasons.

Samsung, LG promote 8K TVs, built-in appliances at IFA
Samsung Electronics Co. and LG Electronics Inc. on Friday showcased their latest achievements in the field of 8K TVs and built-in home appliances, reflecting their commitment to penetrate deeper into top-of-the-line luxury products. For this year's Internationale Funkausstellung (IFA) Berlin, which runs through next Wednesday, Samsung Electronics focused on promoting its new QLED 8K TV.
KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)
'N. Korea Told Pompeo Not to Come Without Things to Offer in Secret Letter'
North Korea's senior official Kim Yong-chol reportedly told U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo not to visit Pyongyang unless he is willing to offer something. Reuters quoted a senior U.S. official on Thursday as saying that the letter to Pompeo said that North Korea believed the U.S. was not doing enough. Reuters said that the letter convinced U.S. officials to distrust the North's commitment to its denuclearization and to lose hope for positive results from Pompeo's planned trip.

S. Korea's Industrial Output Up 0.5% in July
South Korea's industrial output posted growth but facility investment decreased for the fifth consecutive month in July. According to data from Statistics Korea on Friday, the country's overall industrial output increased point-five percent in July on-month. The figure has been fluctuating, increasing point-three percent in May and slipping point-seven percent the next month. It then posted growth last month.

Extra Parliamentary Session Ends without Passing Major Deregulation Bills
This month’s extra parliamentary session has failed to pass bills on easing Internet-only banks' ownership cap and other key deregulation measures. During August’s final plenary session at the National Assembly on Thursday, the negotiation blocs discussed a special bill aimed at raising nonfinancial firms' ownership limit for web-only banks from the current 4 percent, however, they failed to narrow differences and put it to a vote.
Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)
N. Korea wants to continue talks with U.S.: Amb. Cho
North Korea remains determined to maintain the momentum of dialogue with the United States despite a recent hiccup, South Korea's top envoy in Washington said Thursday. Ambassador Cho Yoon-je dismissed a view that Pyongyang and Washington are shifting back to a confrontation after months of diplomatic engagement. "North Korea's intention of maintaining dialogue momentum is certain," he told South Korea's Washington, D.C. correspondents.

U.S. extends travel ban on N. Korea
The U.S. government said Thursday it has decided to keep a ban on its nationals traveling to North Korea amid what officials in Washington describe as a "slow and tough" denuclearization process. "The safety and security of U.S. citizens overseas is one of our highest priorities," the Department of State said in a statement. "The travel warning for North Korea remains in place." It "strongly" warned U.S. citizens not to travel to North Korea," citing "continued concerns about the threat of arrest and long-term detention" of them there.

Parties fail to agree on key bills on easing regulations
Rival parties failed Thursday to narrow their differences about bills on easing Internet-only banks' ownership cap and other key deregulation measures. The bill aimed at raising nonfinancial firms' ownership limit for web-only banks from the current 4 percent is one of the most contentious issues pending at the ongoing extraordinary session of the National Assembly.
The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
Moon replaces five ministers in first reshuffle
President Moon Jae-in on Thursday nominated five new ministers, including ministers of defense and education, and four vice minister-level officials, carrying out his first Cabinet reshuffle since taking office. For the post of Minister of National Defense, Moon tapped Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Jeong Kyeong-doo, who built his career in the Air Force. Jeong is to replace Song Young-moo, a former Navy admiral who has been at the center of numerous controversies during his term in office.

Trump sends mixed signals on military drills, blames China
US President Donald Trump on Wednesday reaffirmed his decision to suspend joint military exercises with South Korea, but also warned he could “instantly” resume the drills, and they could be “far bigger than ever before,” both appeasing and pressuring North Korea amid the stalled denuclearization talks. Without directly taking aim at North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, Trump blamed China -- North Korea’s biggest ally, currently engaged in an intensifying trade dispute with the US -- for a lack of progress on North Korea’s denuclearization.

UNC rejects two Koreas’ request to test-run cross-border railway
The United Nations Command declined the two Koreas’ request to test-run a train on a cross-border railway last week, sources said Thursday, fueling speculation that the US might be reluctant to support inter-Korean projects amid stalled denuclearization talks with North Korea. A test operation of a train connecting the South’s capital of Seoul to the North’s Shinuiju, which lies on the border with China, was initially planned for Aug. 22-27 as part of the Koreas’ joint field survey on modernizing cross-border railways, according to the Unification Ministry.
The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
President asks governors, mayors to help create jobs
President Moon Jae-in called for help from regional governments in creating jobs, Thursday, as the job crisis is weighing on his presidency. "The central government has so far issued guidance on job creation businesses to local governments, but this top-down approach can only generate limited outcomes," Moon said during a meeting with mayors and governors at Cheong Wa Dae.

Army develops 'virtual' drill systems
The Army has developed a series of head-mounted devices for firing and command exercises by incorporating 3D imaging technologies ― such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). The military held a demonstration ceremony Thursday to celebrate the development of the virtual gunnery and battle command exercise ― powered by the two emerging technologies. According to the Army, a group of 16 researchers started developing the virtual training platforms in July last year following an investment of 3.2 billion won ($2.88 million). The Army plans to introduce the systems for reserve forces and active duty soldiers by the end of this year.

Korean vets' chairman gets standing ovation at American Legion convention
Retired South Korean General Kim Jin-ho praised the soldiers who fought in the Korean War, as well as U.S. President Donald Trump for helping bring regional security to the divided Korean Peninsula, at a national convention for American veterans Tuesday. The Chairman of the Korean Veterans Association spoke at the 100th National Convention of the American Legion at the Minneapolis Convention Center in Minnesota.
Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
University Grads Learn Technical Skills for Tough Job Market
Record youth unemployment is prompting a growing number of university graduates to learn practical skills like welding to boost their chances of landing any kind of job. Of the 8,662 new students Korea Polytechnic University admitted into its two-year degree program this year, 1,334 had already attended other universities. In 2015, only 455 out of its 9,323 new students came from other universities, so the proportion increased threefold. In KPU's one-year certificate program, 27 percent of new students are university graduates.

Chinese Spy Jet Buzzes Korea's Air Identification Zone Again
A Chinese military reconnaissance jet flew into Korea's air defense identification zone again without warning on Wednesday. It flew to an area about 96 km east of Gangneung on the east coast before turning back. The incursion came only a few hours after U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis hinted at resuming joint military drills with South Korea and was the fifth such incident this year. According to the Joint Chiefs of Staff here, the Chinese Y-9 spy aircraft flew into Korea's ADIZ from southwest of Ieo Island around 7:37 a.m. without identifying itself as protocol requires.

UAE Official to Visit Seoul to Prepare for Summit
Presidential chief of staff Im Jong-seok on Wednesday spoke with a senior adviser to the ruler of the UAE amid a fresh flare-up in a spat with the emirates over a secretive military deal. Im spoke on the phone with Khaldoon Al Mubarak, a senior adviser to the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan. They talked for 25 minutes to "discuss Khaldoon's visit to prepare for a visit by Crown Prince Mohammed to Korea," according to Cheong Wa Dae.
HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
South Korean government takes no concrete stance on Mattis’s comments
After US Secretary of Defense James Mattis reportedly said that South Korea and the US have no plans to suspend any more of their joint military exercises, South Korea’s defense and foreign policy officials are keeping a close eye on the background and motivations of Mattis’s remarks. “Secretary Mattis’s remarks appear to be in line with our previous agreement with the US in regard to suspending the joint military exercises, and no additional agreement has been reached,” South Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Aug. 29.

Japan held secret meeting with North Korea in Vietnam after Singapore summit, report says
Japan appears to have had a top-secret meeting with North Korea in Vietnam last July following a North Korea-US summit on June 12 in Singapore. Citing anonymous sources, the Washington Post reported on Aug. 28 that Japanese Cabinet Intelligence and Research Office chief Shigeru Kitamura had a secret meeting in Vietnam last month with Kim Song-hye, head of the united front tactical office in the North Korean United Front Department. The newspaper also reported that US officials “expressed irritation” over Japan’s failure to provide prior notification about the encounter.

UN Command blocks inspection plans for inter-Korean railway
Plans for a South Korean train to travel to Sinuiju for a joint South and North Korean inspection of railway conditions in the North were reportedly put on ice after the UN Command refused to grant permission. The South Korean government’s position is that the project in question does not represent an area subject to UN or US sanctions against North Korea. Critics have been vocal in proclaiming that Washington’s interference in inter-Korean cooperation efforts to implement the terms of the Apr. 27 Panmunjeom Declaration have reached the point of infringing on sovereignty. The commander of the UN Command also serves as US Forces Korea commander.
The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)
Korean scientists lead researches for super-fast battery recharging technology
Battery is always a problem when using a smartphone. It would be nice to have a high-capacity battery but it is heavier and takes longer to recharge. Latest smartphone models and tablet computers last about seven to eight hours in continuous use on a single charge. Electric cars can run 200 to 300 kilometers on a single charge. But the current battery technology has reached its limit. In order to further enhance recharging, a new battery technology is required. First, scientists and engineers are conducting research projects to further improve the existing battery technology.

'Local governments should lead job creation,' Moon says
South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who is embarking on generating jobs day after day since the employment shock, invited the heads of seventeen provinces and cities to the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae to create jobs. Under the title "Jobs in the Republic of Korea, Local Governments will Participate in its Creation," President Moon held the first meeting with heads of cities and provinces for some two hours from 11:00 a.m. on Thursday.

LG ‘Signature Kitchen Suite’ makes its debut in European market
LG Electronics will officially launch its ultra-premium built-in kitchen appliances brand "Signature Kitchen Suite" in the European market and expand its dominance in the European home appliances sector. “We will increase our market share in Europe’s competitive built-in kitchen appliances market by equipping ourselves with innovative functions, design where the spirit of masters can be felt as well as distinguishing smart service,” said Song Dae-hyeon, chief of the H&A headquarters of LG Electronics, in Berlin on Thursday (local time).
JoongAng Ilbo (http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/)
Moon shuffles cabinet for first time in 15 months
The Blue House carried out its first major cabinet reshuffle on Thursday since taking power 15 months ago, changing the heads of five ministries. They are the Education Ministry; Defense Ministry; Trade, Energy and Industry Ministry; Employment and Labor Ministry; and Gender Equality and Family Ministry. President Moon Jae-in also made four vice-ministerial appointments in Thursday’s reshuffle.

Heating up of real estate worries government
The Blue House, government and ruling Democratic Party have agreed on the need to cool off the real estate market, which recently became stimulated by Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon’s announcement of major development projects in Yeouido, western Seoul, and Yongsan, in central Seoul - which he backtracked on later. Lee Hae-chan, in his first meeting with senior officials from the Blue House and government since being elected leader of the Democratic Party, suggested raising the comprehensive real estate tax.

U.S. lifts steel quotas on Korea
U.S. President Donald Trump signed a proclamation relieving Korea of steel export quotas to the United States only five months after their implementation. Citing a statement by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Trump signed proclamations relieving Korea, Brazil and Argentina from steel quotas and Argentina from an aluminum quota, Reuters reported on Wednesday. Quota relief is permitted if U.S.-produced steel cannot fulfill demand in the country.
The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Jang Ha-sung, "Deteriorating Indicators Show We Need to Accelerate Income-Driven Growth"
On August 26, Jang Ha-sung, chief of policy at Cheong Wa Dae said, "The recent employment and household income indicators are telling us to accelerate the implementation of income-driven growth policies, not to abandon them." He further asked, "If we don't promote income-driven growth policies, are you telling us we should return to past policies?" As for the recent concerns triggered by the employment and income distribution indicators, Jang said, "As an official overseeing state affairs, I would like to apologize to the people first," but he refused the request by conservatives for the government to abandon its drive for income-driven growth.

Court Rules for Samsung C&T to Compensate Damages Caused by Company’s Interference with Union Activities
The court ruled that Samsung C&T, which hired a security firm to block labor union activities and laid off employees involved in the establishment of the union, should compensate the union members for damages. According to the legal circle on August 23, Civil Department 14 (Chief judge Gang Hwa-seok) of the Seoul Eastern District Court sided in favor of the plaintiff in a lawsuit for compensation filed by Jo Jang-hee, vice-chairman of the Samsung union--a branch of the Gyeonggi chapter of the Korean Metal Workers' Union--against Samsung C&T on August 22. The court ordered Samsung C&T to pay Jo 50 million won; Bak Won-wu, head of the union, 7 million won; and Baek Seung-jin, the secretary-general 2 million won.

"Take Care, Mother," Cried the Two Daughters from North Korea
"Mother, take good care of yourself." When Han Shin-ja (99), a mother from South Korea boarded a bus to return home after the reunion of separated families, her two daughters from the North, Kim Kyong-sil (72) and Kim Kyong-yong (71) tapped the window and cried, "Mother." Han, tears also flowing from her eyes, got up from her seat and said, "Don't cry. Take care." The mother and daughters spoke mouthing the words, because they couldn't hear each other over the bus window. When the daughters made an effort to look into the bus window, which was too high for their height, officials and reporters from the two Koreas held them up. The mother and daughters, who met after 67 years, placed their palms against the window and waved the photographs that they had exchanged as they said their goodbyes once again.
AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)
Husband sentenced to life for killing wife with lethal dose of nicotine

A 22-year-old man was sentenced to life for killing her 19-year-old wife with a lethal dose of nicotine during their honeymoon in Japan in a crime aimed at getting her death benefit worth 150 million won ($135,257). The man was arrested in March for killing his wife in Osaka on April 25 last year. He was found guilty of using a crude liquid of nicotine for his murder and reported to Japanese police that his wife committed suicide.

Samsung confident of releasing true QLED TV ahead of rivals
Samsung Electronics is confident of becoming the world's first to commercialize true self-emitting quantum dot LED (QLED) TVs ahead of rivals, admitting a high price would be the biggest challenge. Samsung promotes LCD TVs enhanced with a quantum dot film layer between the LCD panel and the LED backlight. Quantum dot LCD is a short-term strategy before moving to self-emitting QLED displays which will replace the passive color filters in front of liquid crystal pixels with a quantum dot color filter.

S. Korean web service firm Kakao to start AI-based medical big data business
Kakao, the operator of South Korea's most popular smartphone messenger app, took an adventurous step into the emerging market of healthcare artificial intelligence (AI) by launching a joint venture involving Hyundai Heavy Industries. Kakao Investment, the venture capital investment subsidiary of Kakao, said in a statement on Wednesday that it established a joint venture with Hyundai Heavy Industries Holdings, the shipbuilding group's holding company, and Asan Medical Center, a general hospital renowned for cancer treatment.
Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
Philip Morris reasserts safety of IQOS vs traditional cigarettes

Philip Morris Korea Inc. on Tuesday reasserted the safety of its popular heat-not-burn cigarette IQOS by revealing the findings of its test on mice that were exposed to its heated tobacco product less than three months after it defended its smokeless cigarette with another clinical test result in June. In a press conference in central Seoul on Tuesday, the foreign tobacco major unveiled the results of its latest study on the effect of steam from its smokeless tobacco product IQOS on cancer occurrence.

IKEA to officially launch online shop in Korea on Sep 1
Swedish home furnishing giant IKEA is accelerating its expansion in South Korea by adding IKEA Korea online shopping mall on top of the plan to open its third offline store less than four years since it first entered the country. The Korean unit of IKEA, IKEA Korea, said Wednesday it will officially launch an online store on Sept. 1 to allow Korean consumers to buy their flat-pack furniture and other home furnishing accessories with a few simple mouse clicks instead of waiting in a long queue at cash tills.

Doosan Infracore opens distribution center in Germany
Doosan Infracore Co., a South Korean maker of construction heavy machineries, has opened an engine parts distribution center (PDC) in Germany to better serve European clients. The new engine PDC located in Halle, a city near Leipzig in eastern Germany, will service 4,600 engine parts to become its second overseas PDC after an earlier opening in the United States.
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.com bfp@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
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.

Lee Kyung-sik  edt@koreapost.com

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