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Headlines, February 1, 2019

The Korean daily media headlines and humor

Friday, February 1, 2019

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

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

U.S. envoy calls for full declaration of N. Korea's nuclear weapons program

Funeral begins for iconic former wartime sex slave. The funeral service for Kim Bok-dong, an iconic victim of wartime sexual slavery, began in a funeral hall located in a general hospital in western Seoul early Friday. Lee Yong-su, a surviving victim, bowed to pay her respects and bid a last farewell to her friend. Dozens of officials at the Korean Council for Justice and Remembrance (KCJR), a civic group representing the victims, also paid tribute.

S. Korean consumer prices rise 0.8 pct on-year in January

South Korea's consumer prices rose 0.8 percent in January from a year earlier on gains in agricultural products and the service sector, government data showed Friday. The reading represents a decline from the previous month's 1.3 percent on-year gain, according to figures released by Statistics Korea. From a month earlier, the index fell 0.1 percent.

U.S. envoy calls for full declaration of N. Korea's nuclear weapons program

The U.S. envoy for North Korea called on the regime Thursday to provide a full declaration of its nuclear and missile programs as a second bilateral summit appeared only weeks away. Special Representative Stephen Biegun, who is in charge of day-to-day negotiations with the North, said the declaration will be required to acknowledge complete denuclearization of the regime.

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

Trump: Date, Venue of N. Korea Summit to be Announced Next Week

U.S. President Donald Trump said Thursday that a date and venue for his second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will be announced early next week. Trump reaffirmed the plan to hold the summit in a meeting with reporters at the White House, saying that "tremendous" progress was made with North Korea. He said the summit will be held at the end of February at a certain location and that most people would know where the location is, apparently confirming media speculations that it will be Vietnam.

US, N. Korea to Hold Working-level Talks Next Week Ahead of Summit

North Korea and the U.S. will hold working-level talks next week to prepare for a second summit between their leaders. The U.S. State Department said Thursday that Special Representative for North Korea Stephen Biegun will travel to Seoul on Sunday for follow-up meetings with his North Korean counterpart, known to be the former ambassador to Spain, Kim Hyok-chol. The department said the two sides will discuss "next steps to advance the U.S. objective of the final fully verified denuclearization of North Korea," without revealing the date or location of the talks.

Third Food-and-Mouth Case Confirmed in Chungju

A third case of foot-and-mouth disease(FMD) was confirmed Thursday in Chungcheong Province, raising concerns over the spread of the animal disease just ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday. The Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs said cows at a beef farm in Chungju, North Chungcheong Province tested positive for the highly contagious animal disease. It is the third confirmed FMD case following two cases in Anseong, Gyeonggi Province earlier this week.

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

S. Korea's 3rd FMD case confirmed in central region

A third case of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) was confirmed Thursday in central South Korea, raising concerns over the spread of the highly contagious animal disease just ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday. The Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs said cows on a beef farm in Chungju, 147 kilometers south of Seoul, tested positive for FMD. The specific type of the virus will be released Friday, the ministry added.

S. Korea's export fall 5.8 pct in Jan.

South Korea's exports moved down 5.8 percent in January from a year earlier, government data showed Friday, due mainly to weaker performances by chips and petrochemical goods. Outbound shipments came to US$46.3 billion for January, down from $49.2 billion posted a year earlier, according to the data compiled by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy. Imports decreased 1.7 percent over the cited period to reach $45 billion, the ministry added.

President hails new car manufacturing venture as innovative way to create jobs

President Moon Jae-in on Thursday welcomed the launch of a joint venture by Hyundai Motor Group and a local government, calling it a new and innovative way to create jobs. "The growth of a company must lead to employment. The people must be able to have hopes and dreams for a better future through quality jobs and under the protection of social safety nets," the president said following a ceremony for the joint investment deal between the country's largest automaker and the city government of Gwangju.

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

Trump: Date, venue of 2nd NK summit to be announced next week

US President Donald Trump said Thursday that a date and venue for his second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will be announced next week. Speaking at the White House, he reaffirmed the plan to hold the meeting in late February and appeared to confirm reports the venue will be Vietnam.

Samsung’s chip windfall unlikely to last in 2019

The so-called “super cycle” in the semiconductor market in the past two years helped Samsung Electronics seal a new record in annual operating profit for the entire 2018 for the second straight year. But it may not be easy for the tech mogul to make it three in a row because of worsening market conditions this year.

S. Korea’s industrial output, investments mark 2-month fall in December

South Korea saw a decline in both production and investment, marking two consecutive months of downtrend amid slowing exports of key sectors, government data showed Thursday. The country’s industrial output fell 0.6 percent in December from a month earlier, reflecting the decreased exports of automobiles and semiconductors, according to data compiled and released by Statistics Korea.

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

Opposition parties zero in on President Moon

The opposition parties are stepping up their pressure on President Moon Jae-in after his long-time confidant, South Gyeongsang Province Governor Kim Kyoung-soo, was convicted of opinion rigging during the 2017 presidential race. Raising allegations of Moon's possible involvement, the main opposition Liberty Korea Party (LKP) held a party meeting near Cheong Wa Dae, Wednesday, to demand an explanation from the President.

Police search CARE office in euthanasia allegation probe

Police searched the office and eight other locations of the Coexistence of Animal Rights on Earth (CARE), Thursday, in their investigation into the animal rights group head's alleged euthanasia of hundreds of animals. Investigators from Jongno Police Station seized accounting books and other materials, and inspected animal shelters run by the group.

Trump to announce 2nd North Korean summit plan Tuesday

President Donald Trump said Thursday he will likely announce the site and date of a second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during the State of the Union address on Tuesday. ''They very much want the meeting,'' Trump told reporters, saying his administration has made ''tremendous progress'' toward reining in the North's nuclear ambitions. The summit is expected to take place around the end of February.

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

Korea Deploys 1st Aerial Refueling Tanker

Korea's first aerial refueling tanker was commissioned in a ceremony at Gimhae Air Base on Wednesday afternoon in the presence of Defense Minister Jeong Kyeong-doo. The KC-330 "Cygnus," bought from Europe's Airbus in November last year, was deployed warfare-ready after a series of tests here. The aerial tanker "will further boost the combat capabilities of the military to respond to threats in a rapidly changing security environment," Jeong said at the ceremony.

Netflix Users in Korea Surpass 1 Million

U.S. video-streaming provider Netflix has attracted more than a million users in Korea on their Android mobile devices alone, just three years after entering the market here. The number of Netflix users has increased by 200,000 to 300,000 every three month, and industry watchers forecast the company to become the No. 1 video-streaming provider in Korea soon. According market researcher Wiseapp on Wednesday, 1.27 million people used the Netflix app on their Android phones last month, a 3.7-fold increase from January 2018. If people who access Netflix on their PCs or iPhones are counted, the number is probably much higher.

South Gyeongsang Governor Jailed for Opinion-Rigging

South Gyeongsang Province Governor Kim Kyung-soo was sentenced to two years in jail on Wednesday for conspiring with a power blogger in online manipulation of public opinion ahead of the 2017 presidential election. The governor is a close confidante of President Moon Jae-in. The court said he played a "dominant" role in the opinion-rigging scandal.

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

Abe cites desire to avoid “war of words” as reason for omitting S. Korea in annual policy speech

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has stated that the decision to omit South Korea-Japan relations from his annual policy speech was made because he thought “it would be inappropriate to get involved in a war of words.” Abe’s statement came in response to the question “Why didn’t you mention Korea in the annual policy speech?” posed by Yuichiro Tamaki, leader of the Democratic Party for the People, in a plenary session of the Japanese House of Representatives on Jan. 30. In the address delivered at a regular session in the House of Representatives on Jan. 28, Abe’s only reference to South Korea was a remark about North Korea, in which he stated Tokyo would be “closely coordinating with the international community, in particular Washington and Seoul.”

US intelligence community says N. Korea unlikely to completely surrender nuclear weapons

The US intelligence community has acknowledged that while North Korean leader Kim Jong-un may be showing an openness to the possibility of denuclearization, it is unlikely that Kim will give up nuclear weapons entirely. Ahead of the second North Korea-US summit, this represents a reiteration of the US intelligence community’s evaluation from last year. Dan Coats, director of National Intelligence, a role that commands all 16 of the US Intelligence Agencies, CIA Director Gina Haspel, and NSA Director Paul Nakasone, among others, testified at a US Senate hearing on Jan. 29. The intelligence agency chiefs also released a report titled the “Worldwide Threat Assessment of the US Intelligence Community” containing such opinions.

N. Korea and US reportedly to hold working talks at Panmunjom around Feb. 4

North Korea and the US are reportedly planning to hold working-level talks at Panmunjom around Feb. 4 in order to deliberate the details of the second summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump, which is planned for the end of February. Reports indicate that the US has proposed holding the summit in Vietnam, but North Korea hasn’t yet made an official response. On Jan. 29, US political website Politico quoted a well-informed anonymous source as saying that US Special Representative for North Korea Stephen Biegun will apparently be meeting his counterparts at Panmunjom on Feb. 4. Multiple sources in South Korea confirmed that the US has proposed holding working-level talks at Panmunjom on Feb. 4. While North Korea hasn’t made its final response, these sources predicted that the talks would be held around that date, barring any major developments.

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The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)

Fed halts rate hike drive

The U.S. Federal Reserve Bank has sent a strong signal that it may halt its interest rate increases, the three-year drive to tighten monetary policy is nearing an end. As the Federal Open Market Committee’s statement used the word “patient” for the first time in four years, analysts say that the Fed intends to pre-emptively quell fears over a recession.

EU shows strong opposition to Brexit renegotiations

The leaders of the European Union have sharply criticized British Prime Minister Theresa May’s bid to renegotiate the Brexit deal. Britain is being denounced for making the meticulously drafted agreement among 28 countries null for political reasons.

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

Gwangju car factory plan signed

Hyundai Motor and the southwestern city of Gwangju reached a landmark deal on Thursday to build a joint venture plant capable of producing 100,000 cars per year - at much lower wages than at Hyundai’s other factories. The agreement follows very rocky negotiations since the automaker tentatively agreed to join the Gwangju-led project last June. The so-called Gwangju employment plan is considered a breakthrough for Hyundai Motor to get relief from high labor costs and expand production. For Gwangju, it will create many jobs.

KDB closer to selling troubled DSME to HHI

The main creditor of Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) tentatively agreed to sell a controlling stake in the troubled shipyard to Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) on Thursday in a deal that could be worth around 2 trillion won ($1.7 billion). But the Korea Development Bank (KDB), which holds a majority share of DSME, stressed that the deal is not complete and that Samsung Heavy Industries, the country’s third-largest shipbuilder, will be asked if it is interested in taking over DSME.

Samsung, LG see profits plummet in Q4

Samsung and LG Electronics both reported considerable drops in their fourth quarter results on Thursday, blaming sluggish growth in the smartphone market and falling memory chip sales. LG Electronics’ smartphone business recorded an operating loss of 322.3 billion won ($289.5 million), 49 percent bigger than the previous year’s loss. This was the 15th consecutive quarter that the company’s smartphone business has been in the red. Annual revenue from the mobile communications division was 7.98 trillion won.

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

Agreement Reached on "Gwangju-Type Jobs"

A social agreement has been reached on the Gwangju-type jobs (win-win jobs for both labor and management), which seek adequate wages and working hours. On January 13, the city of Gwangju and Hyundai Motor Company will sign an investment contract to build an automobile production plant by 2021. This factory will be the first workplace providing Gwangju-type jobs.

"I Am Kim Bok-dong" Resonating in All of Us

"Everyone, right now butterflies are fluttering around the world. This old butterfly flies, too." On August 14, 2015, an international day of remembrance for the comfort women in the Japanese military, the elderly Kim Bok-dong stepped up to the podium and shouted these words with a bright smile on her face. The Japanese government continues to ignore the crimes it committed in the past war. Rather, they blame the comfort women victims for the crimes of sexual slavery in the Japanese military claiming, "There is no evidence that they were forced." Despite such a frustrating situation, the elderly Kim thought that the more the Japanese government denied history, the more we won.

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AJU Business Daily (http://www.ajudaily.com)

Integrated corporation proposed to jointly manage Hyundai and Daewoo shipyards

After years of painful restructuring, South Korea's shipbuilding industry embarked on consolidation led by Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), the world's largest shipbuilder, to create an integrated corporation which is unrivaled in scale, know-how and technology.

Hyundai Motor agrees to invest in mini SUV joint venture at home

In a deal hailed by South Korean President Moon Jae-in as a win-win, Hyundai Motor agreed to invest in the construction of a new plant in cooperation with a municipal government to produce compact SUVs in the southern city of Gwangju. As a non-management investor, Hyundai will invest 53 billion won ($47 million) to acquire a 19 percent stake in the joint company, with the Gwangju city government owning 21 percent. The plant will assemble compact SUVs with one-liter engines under an original equipment manufacturing (OEM) contract.

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

KDB signs $2.2 bn stk swap deal in DSME with HHI in privatization scheme

The industry’s No. 2 Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) will be sold either to the No. 1 Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) or No. 3 Samsung Heavy Industries to create a shipbuilding behemoth unmatched in the world in terms of backlog and capacity under a privatization scheme announced by state-lender Korea Development Bank (KDB).

S. Korea to host ADB meeting in Incheon in 2020

South Korea will host the Asian Development Bank (ADB)’s annual meeting of its board of governors in 2020, marking the third time for the country to welcome the event after one in Seoul in 1970 and Jeju Island in 2004. The Ministry of Strategy and Finance said on Thursday the ADB officially informed that Korea is picked as a host country of its 53rd Annual Meeting of its Board of Governors in Incheon, Gyeonggi Province, from May 2 to 5 in 2020 after a vote by 67 members.

Korean bonds rally on hint of slower U.S. rate increases

Korean bonds rallied as comments from the Bank of Korea (BOK) chief and the overnight results from the U.S. Federal Reserve policy meeting suggested moderation in the pace of rate increases in the face of growing downside risks to the global economy. The Fed statement that it would be “patient” in future rate adjustments and the removal of the phrase “future gradual increases” suggest its shift to a more conservative monetary policy, BOK Governor Lee Ju-yeol said on Thursday.

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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 http://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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