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Headlines, August 27, 2019

The Korean daily media headlines and humor

Tuesday, August 27, 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.

Moon invests 50 mln won in fund for S. Korea's material makers amid trade row with Japan

In a symbolic move to show the government's determination to help foster South Korea's parts and materials production industry against Japan's export restrictions, President Moon Jae-in on Monday invested 50 million won (US$41,135) in a relevant stock fund. He visited the headquarters of NH Nonghyup Bank in Seoul and subscribed to the fund devoted to listed firms here manufacturing materials, components and equipment. Moon, a former human rights lawyer, said it's the first time that he has put money in such a stock fund. "It's very important to enhance the competitiveness of (South Korea's) material, component and equipment industries," he said while talking with bank workers.

Lower oil prices, weak won bode ill for refiners' Q3 earnings

South Korea's major refiners may see their earnings continue to slide in the current quarter due largely to weakened cracking margins, sliding oil prices and the Korean won's weakness, analysts here said Tuesday. South Korea's top four refiners -- SK Innovation Co., GS Caltex Corp., S-Oil Corp. and Hyundai Oilbank Co. -- logged a combined operating profit of 1.72 trillion won (US$1.42 billion) in the first six months of the year, more than halved from a year ago on low refining margins and weak demand.

S. Korea to expand financial support for firms hit by Japan's export curbs

South Korea's top financial regulator said Tuesday the government will expand financial support for companies hit by Japan's export restrictions if needed, as Tokyo's decision to drop Seoul from its list of trusted trading partners is set to take effect this week. Choi Jong-ku, chairman of the Financial Services Commission (FSC), made the remarks at a meeting with senior executives of banks, a day before South Korea is officially dropped from Japan's so-called whitelist. Japan, which tightened exports of key materials to South Korea on July 4 in apparent retaliation over compensation for wartime forced labor, decided to drop Seoul from the list earlier this month.

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

Trump Says N. Korea Has 'Tremendous Potential'

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday that North Korea has "tremendous" economic potential given its strategic location. Trump made the remarks during a joint press conference with French President Emmanuel Macron, wrapping up the three-day G7 summit in France. Trump said that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, who he knows "extremely well," is "a man with a country that has tremendous potential" and that Kim sees that. He said that North Korea has a great location as it shares borders with China, Russia and South Korea.

S. Korea Issues Travel Advisory for Hong Kong

South Korea has issued a travel advisory for Hong Kong where months of pro-democracy protests and clashes with police are escalating tensions. The Foreign Ministry on Monday said it issued the travel advisory in light of continued unrest across Hong Kong and rising concerns about the safety of South Korean travelers. Issuing the lowest level one advisory under its four-tier travel alert system, the ministry urged South Korean nationals staying in Hong Kong or planning to visit the region to exercise caution for their personal safety.

Kyodo: S. Korea, China, Japan Arranging Trilateral Summit in December

South Korea, China and Japan are reportedly arranging a trilateral summit in December. Quoting diplomatic sources from all three countries, Japan's Kyodo News reported on Monday that arrangements are being made to hold the three-way summit around Christmas Day. If the trilateral summit goes ahead, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe are expected to meet for separate talks to discuss bilateral issues such as a planned state visit to Japan by Chinese President Xi Jinping.

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

Trump again touts N. Korea's economic potential

U.S. President Donald Trump again touted North Korea's "tremendous" economic potential on Monday, seemingly urging the regime to return to denuclearization talks. The negotiations have yet to resume despite Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's agreement to do so within several weeks after their impromptu meeting on the inter-Korean border on June 30. "I think that North Korea has tremendous economic potential, and I think that Kim Jong-un sees that," Trump said at a joint press conference with French President Emmanuel Macron at the conclusion of a Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France.

S. Korea to expand financial support for firms hit by Japan's export curbs

South Korea's top financial regulator said Tuesday the government will expand financial support for companies hit by Japan's export restrictions if needed, as Tokyo's decision to drop Seoul from its list of trusted trading partners is set to take effect this week. Choi Jong-ku, chairman of the Financial Services Commission (FSC), made the remarks at a meeting with senior executives of banks, a day before South Korea is officially dropped from Japan's so-called whitelist.

Lower oil prices, weak won bode ill for refiners' Q3 earnings

South Korea's major refiners may see their earnings continue to slide in the current quarter due largely to weakened cracking margins, sliding oil prices and the Korean won's weakness, analysts here said Tuesday. South Korea's top four refiners -- SK Innovation Co., GS Caltex Corp., S-Oil Corp. and Hyundai Oilbank Co. -- logged a combined operating profit of 1.72 trillion won (US$1.42 billion) in the first six months of the year, more than halved from a year ago on low refining margins and weak demand.

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

S. Korea to insert W2tr to industries next year amid trade woes

South Korea’s government said Monday that it will insert more than 2 trillion won ($1.64 billion) of the budget next year to help local industries respond to Japan’s economic retaliations and consequent challenges on trade fronts. Also, President Moon Jae-in subscribed to an equity fund that invests in local materials and parts makers, in a supportive gesture for such aggressive fiscal actions. “(The government) will play its due fiscal role, even at the cost of temporary fiscal deficit,” said Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki in a meeting with lawmakers of the ruling Democratic Party of Korea.

Parties agree to hold hearing on Cho Kuk from Sept. 2-3

The National Assembly judiciary committee agreed Monday to convene a two-day confirmation hearing starting Sept. 2 on Justice Minister nominee Cho Kuk, who is plagued by a series of allegations involving his daughter and family. The ruling Democratic Party of Korea and the opposition bloc had bickered over the confirmation hearing date amid allegations ranging from university admission irregularities involving his daughter to his family’s dubious investment in a private equity firm.

Scandal-ridden Kolon TissueGene to be delisted

The Korea Exchange, South Korea's bourse operator, said Monday it has tentatively decided to delist Kolon TissueGene Inc., an affiliate of Kolon Life Science, from the local stock market as it submitted a false document when it was listed two years ago. But the company is allowed to seek further review for the decision, which means that depending on the final outcome of the review, shares of Kolon TissueGene could be delisted or remain on the Kosdaq market.

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

Trump again touts North Korea's economic potential

U.S. President Donald Trump again touted North Korea's "tremendous" economic potential on Monday, seemingly urging the regime to return to denuclearization talks. The negotiations have yet to resume despite Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's agreement to do so within several weeks after their impromptu meeting on the inter-Korean border on June 30. "I think that North Korea has tremendous economic potential, and I think that Kim Jong-un sees that," Trump said at a joint press conference with French President Emmanuel Macron at the conclusion of a Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France.

Samsung stays Korea's top brand despite value drop

Samsung Electronics Co. remains by far the most valuable brand in South Korea despite a drop in its brand value, a report said Tuesday. Samsung Electronics, the world's No. 1 memory chip and smartphone maker, topped the list of 50 leading brands in Asia's fourth-largest economy with a valuation of 83.2 trillion won (US$68.6 billion) this year, according to the report by British-based industry tracker Brand Finance. Yet its brand value represents a 6.3 percent decline from last year's record high of 88.8 trillion won, with its brand rating dropping one notch to "AAA" from "AAA+."

G7 offers emergency aid to fight Amazon forest fires

Leaders of the Group of Seven wealthy nations on Monday offered $20 million of emergency aid to help battle wildfires in the Amazon rainforest, a gesture Brazil slammed as colonialist. Despite record wildfires in the Amazon and President Jair Bolsonaro previously saying his government lacked the money to fight the blazes, it was not clear if Brazil would accept the G7 offer amid growing international concern. Personal relations between French President Emmanuel Macron and Bolsonaro, already strained by the crisis in the Amazon, deteriorated even further after Brazil's leader mocked Macron's wife on Facebook.

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

N.Korea 'Could Easily Restore Blown-up Nuke Site'

North Korea could restore a blown-up nuclear test site to its original state or simply develop a new one, a U.S. State Department report has warned. The State Department in a report last week expressed concerns that "it is assessed that the results of the detonations at [the Punggye-ri] nuclear test site on May 24, 2018, are almost certainly reversible." "It is possible that North Korea could develop another nuclear test site if it chose to do so," the report adds.

N.Korea Keeps Firing Missiles Amid Weakened Defense Alliance

North Korea test-fired two missiles from a massive multiple rocket launcher on Saturday, putting weakened defense cooperation between the U.S., South Korea and Japan to the test. Washington, Seoul and Tokyo practically raced each other to report the latest developments, raising doubts over the accuracy of accounts given by each side. U.S. President Donald Trump once again made comments that appeared to condone the North's provocations by claiming he has a "good relationship" with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

Samsung, LG Prioritize High-End TV Market

Korean-made TVs have accounted for by far the highest proportion of global sales since 2013. Samsung accounted for 31.5 percent in the second quarter of the year and LG for 16.5 percent. Together they rake in about half of global revenues. But based on volume their share fell to 31.8 percent because they are increasingly concentrating on high-end models after realizing they cannot beat their Chinese rivals at the cheap end. Samsung takes up a whopping 53.8-percent share of the global market for TVs costing US$2,500 or more and LG for 17.8 percent.

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

S. Korean military conducts defense exercise for East Sea and island of Dokdo

On Aug. 25, the South Korean military abruptly initiated a “territorial defense exercise for the East Sea,” an expanded version of the “Dokdo defense exercise” that had been postponed since June. This move came just three days after South Korea terminated its information-sharing agreement with Japan, known as the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA). While this is a routine exercise designed to reinforce the country’s resolve to defend its territory, including the island of Dokdo, it has always received pushback from Japan. As such, the exercise seems designed to irk Japan, on the heels of the GSOMIA withdrawal.

Trump gives muted response on S. Korea’s withdrawal from GSOMIA

US president’s muted response in contrast to Washington’s blatant dissatisfaction. When asked about the South Korean government’s decision to terminate an intelligence-sharing agreement with Japan, US President Donald Trump said, “We’re going to see what happens.” Though Trump’s response was more muted than stern comments from the US State Department, concerns remain that the Trump administration will crank up pressure on Seoul over its decision to scrap the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA).

Cries for women’s justice ring out in Berlin

The winter after I left for Germany, I happened to discover an international event that focuses on the issue of “comfort women” drafted for sexual slavery under the Japanese military. It was my first encounter with AG “Trostfrauen,” a council led by the German civic group Korea Verband for countermeasures on the comfort women issue. I subsequently took part in efforts to inform Germans about the issue.

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

S. Korea's GSOMIA termination could fuel U.S.’ demand to pay more for USFK

The consequences from the Moon Jae-in administration’s decision to end General Security Of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) is being felt by the ROK-US alliance. With Pyongyang firing short-range ballistic missiles to drive a wedge between the tripartite ties among Seoul, Tokyo, and Washington, U.S. President Donald Trump is expressing ire over the joint military exercise with South Korea, calling it “a total waste of money. Concern is further fueled that should the Trump administration conclude Seoul’s withdrawal from the military intelligence-sharing deal will lead to an increase in security costs, it might make a push on Seoul during the next year’s cost-sharing negotiations for the U.S. forces stationed in South Korea while cutting back on the scale of joint military drills between the two allies.

Samsung smartphones post highest market share in Japan in 6 years

In the second quarter of this year, South Korean mobile giant Samsung Electronics has recorded the highest market share of 9.8 percent in Japanese smartphone market in six years. According to Strategy Analytics, Samsung shipped roughly 600,000 units of smartphones to Japan during the quarter of 2019. The market share is the second highest following that of Apple’s 50.8 percent. Up one percentage point year-on-year, the figure is the highest for Samsung since 2013.

The human body like the scenery, the scenery like the human body’

Western-style painter Hang Hong-su, 61, living in France, has been holding a solo exhibition titled “Haut-fond” at Youngeun Museum in Gwangju City, Gyeonggi Province since Saturday. Once you take a step inside, a scenery of deep mountain valleys welcomes you. Each shape of valley-like features with a mysterious look turns out to be overlaps of a human body’s part. They represent the artist’s unique view that describes the human body as a natural scenery – the human body like the scenery, the scenery like the human body.

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

A Sudden Dokdo Defense Exercise with an Aegis Destroyer and Special Forces

Military authorities launched the Dokdo defense drill on August 25, three days after the government decided to terminate the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) with Japan. The scale of this year's exercise was the largest ever, nearly twice as large as previous years, and a Navy Aegis ship and soldiers from the Army Special Warfare Command also took part for the first time. This, following the termination of the GSOMIA, suggests that South Korea will continue its hardline stance against Japan.

The Situation Surrounding the GSOMIA, A Proper Awareness Is Required

On August 25, the military launched this year's Dokdo defense drill. The ROKS Sejong the Great, an Aegis destroyer, and the Army Special Warfare Command also took part in this year's exercises. The military launched a Dokdo defense drill at twice the scale of the usual exercises three days after the government declared an end to the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) with Japan on August 22, after they identified the need for a firm attitude against Japan, which is refusing to talk.

Government Decides to Terminate GSOMIA, "It Does Not Serve Our National Interest"

On August 22, the government decided to terminate the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) with Japan. The GSOMIA is the only military agreement between South Korea and Japan, and it will be terminated three years after it was signed in 2016. With the government's decision to terminate the military agreement as a countermeasure against Japan's economic retaliation, the worst of situations is expected in the relationship between South Korea and Japan. The United States had emphasized military cooperation with South Korea and Japan and had wanted to see the military agreement extended. So the latest decision may lead to some turbulence in the future ROK-US alliance.

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

Seoul pledges “decisive” actions as Korean stocks, FX take another hit

South Korean authorities on Monday pledged “preemptive and decisive” actions to stabilize the financial market as local assets bore fresh hit from a renewed escalation in the U.S.-China trade war. Kim Yong-beom, first vice minister of economy and finance, on Monday assured that Korean markets have “sufficient” resilience and “policy” ammunitions to fight off external shocks.

Samsung heir urges to develop new technologies to stay ahead in display industry

Jay Y. Lee, vice chairman of Samsung Electronics Co. and heir apparent of the South Korean tech giant, has called on its display making unit’s employees to rev up efforts to develop more advanced, new display technologies to fend off ascending Chinese rivals in the midst of unfavored conditions at home and abroad. “Crisis and opportunity keep repeating,” Lee said during a management-level meeting on Monday at Samsung Display’s operations facility in Asan, South Chungcheong Province when they discussed a slump in the global liquid crystal display (LCD) market. “The challenges surrounding the LCD industry should not stop us from developing large-size displays.”

Moody’s revises down Korea’s growth outlook amid trade spat with Japan

Moody’s Investors Service further revised down Korea’s economic growth forecast for this year to 2.0 percent from the previous 2.1 percent to reflect the trade fallout with Japan. In its “Global Macro Outlook 2019-20” report released Monday, the global ratings agency said the trade dispute “undermines Korea’s near-term growth prospects” as its trade-reliant economy is particularly vulnerable to weakening exports. Asia’s fourth-largest economy is on course for a ninth straight month of export decline in August, hurt by the escalating trade war between the U.S. and China and its own trade battle with Japan.

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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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Korean-language Internet edition: http://www.koreapost.co.kr
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Korean-language print newspaper:
http://pdf.koreapost.co.kr/38/3801.pdf
http://pdf.koreapost.co.kr/38/3802.pdf
http://pdf.koreapost.co.kr/38/3803.pdf
http://www.koreapost.co.kr/pdf/list.php?category=&syear=2018&smonth=03&sday=26&hosu=40
English E-daily: http://www.koreapost.com/news/articleView.html?idxno=9897
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Lee Kyung-sik  edt@koreapost.com

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