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Headlines, November 11, 2019

기사승인 2019.11.11  10:03:24

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Monday, November 11, 2019

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

The Korea Post (http://www.koreapost.com/)

Allies working on 'contingency plans' over N. Korea's year-end deadline ultimatum: Cheong Wa Dae

The United States is trying hard to coax North Korea into restarting nuclear talks, as South Korea is also quite "serious" about the year-end deadline set by Pyongyang, a top Cheong Wa Dae official said Sunday. The North has emphasized that the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump should change tack and put forward fresh offers based on a "new calculation method" by the end of this year or face an end to the already troubled dialogue process itself.

LG files suit against TCL over cell phone-related patent

South Korean electronics maker LG Electronics Inc. said Sunday that it has filed a patent infringement suit against Chinese electronics maker TCL in Germany to protect its cell phone-related technologies. LG Electronics said it filed complaints against the Chinese company in two district courts in Germany, claiming that TCL had infringed upon some of its feature phone and smartphone-related technologies, including long-term evolution (LTE) technology.

Antitrust watchdog OKs telcos' mergers with cable operators

South Korea's antitrust regulator said Sunday that it has given conditional approval to fixed-line operator SK Broadband Inc. to merge with t-broad, the country's No. 2 cable TV operator, in a deal worth 4.7 trillion won (US$4 billion) that could allow the merged entity to hold a quarter of the country's pay TV market. The Fair Trade Commission (FTC) also approved the country's third-largest mobile carrier, LG Uplus Corp., to acquire a 50 percent stake plus one share of CJ Hello Co., the nation's largest cable operator, from South Korean entertainment giant CJ ENM for 800 billion won.

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

Moon Meets Party Leaders to Start Second Half of Presidency

President Moon Jae-in on Sunday met the leaders of five political parties amid a political stalemate over key reform bills and other pending issues. After the closed-door meeting, that lasted for about three hours from 6 p.m. at the presidential residence, the ruling Democratic Party(DP) said that Moon proposed the resumption of a state council meeting at which significant contemporary political issues are discussed.

Moon's Top Aide: US Trying 'Very Hard' to Convince N. Korea to Restart Talks

A top presidential official said on Sunday that the United States is trying "very hard" to convince North Korea to restart nuclear talks. Chung Eui-yong, the chief of the presidential National Security Office, made the remarks during a joint press conference at the top office along with President Moon Jae-in's Chief of Staff Noh Young-min and chief policy secretary Kim Sang-jo.

Prosecution to Indict Former Justice Minister's Wife Monday

The prosecution will formally indict Chung Kyung-sim, the wife of former Justice Minister Cho Kuk, on Monday as her detention period is set to expire. The Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office decided to indict Chung on some ten charges, including violations of the capital market law. The prosecution plans to continue probes into other allegations against Chung after sending the case to trial.

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

Nonproliferation conference ends without meeting between U.S., N.K. envoys

A nuclear nonproliferation conference in Moscow has wrapped up without a separate meeting between a U.S. special envoy for North Korea and a North Korean foreign ministry official handling American affairs who attended the event. U.S. Special Envoy for North Korea Mark Lambert and Jo Chol-su, director-general of the North American department at the North's foreign ministry, had gathered in the Russian capital for the 2019 Moscow Nonproliferation Conference, raising speculation over possible talks between the two on the margins of the conference.

Nonproliferation conference ends without meeting between U.S., N.K. envoys

A nuclear nonproliferation conference in Moscow has wrapped up without a separate meeting between a U.S. special envoy for North Korea and a North Korean foreign ministry official handling American affairs who attended the event. U.S. Special Envoy for North Korea Mark Lambert and Jo Chol-su, director-general of the North American department at the North's foreign ministry, had gathered in the Russian capital for the 2019 Moscow Nonproliferation Conference, raising speculation over possible talks between the two on the margins of the conference.

S. Korea's auto output likely to hit 9-yr low in 2019

South Korea's automobile output is widely expected to reach a nine-year low this year on sluggish sales at home and abroad, dipping to below 4 million units for the first time since 2009, data showed Sunday. In the first 10 months of the year, the combined sales of automakers here came to 3.24 million units, down 0.7 percent from the same period last year, according to the data from the Korea Automobile Manufacturers' Association (KAMA).

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

Moon meets ruling, opposition party leaders amid political stalemate

President Moon Jae-in agreed Sunday with the heads of South Korea‘s five major political parties on the need to resume a key regular meeting on discussing major pending political issues, a ruling party official said after their Cheong Wa Dae dinner meeting. At the end of the session, held at Moon’s official residence inside the presidential compound for around two and a half hours, the participants had a “rather positive discussion” on the issue of restarting the standing council on state affairs among the ruling and opposition parties and the government, according to a Democratic Party official.

Bolivia's Morales resigns after losing backing of security forces

Bolivian President Evo Morales resigned Sunday, caving in following three weeks of sometimes-violent protests over his disputed re-election after the army and police withdrew their backing. "I resign my post as president," the leftist Morales said in a televised address, capping a day of fast-moving events in which many ministers and senior officials quit as support for Latin America's longest-serving president crumbled.

Number of temporary workers rises 13.1% in 2019

The number of temporary workers in South Korea rose 13.1 percent on-year this year, with such positions also accounting for a rising percentage of the total, government data showed. A total of 7.48 million workers were nonregular workers, part-timers or outsourced laborers as of August 2019, up about 870,000 from a year ago, according to the data from Statistics Korea.

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

S. Korea-US alliance faces tough challenges on multiple fronts

Issues surrounding the alliance between South Korea and the United States have recently come under spotlight as the two countries are facing an end-of-the year deadline in negotiations for the 11th Special Measures Agreement (SMA) on sharing the cost for the stationing of the United States Forces Korea (USFK). After the first and second round of negotiations were held in Seoul and Honolulu in September and October respectively, the third round is set to be held in the Korean capital this month.

Moon to focus on communication in latter half of term

As President Moon Jae-in marked the halfway point of his single five-year term Sunday, his top aides stressed that changes taken to build a new Korea, including a peaceful peninsula, will continue. "The remaining two and a half years of the Moon administration will be a period devoted to realizing the country's new leap forward," Moon's chief of staff Noh Young-min said in a press conference Sunday at Cheong Wa Dae.

Seoul pushed into corner over extending pact with Tokyo

Korea is facing increasingly unfavorable diplomatic circumstances over its military intelligence-sharing pact with Japan, with less than two weeks remaining before its expiration. In August, Seoul decided to axe the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) amid a tit-for-tat escalation over Korean courts' rulings against Japanese firms linked to wartime slave labor and Tokyo's corresponding export curbs.

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

Long-Term Unemployment Soars

The number of people who have been unemployed for more than three months has increased steadily over the last six years, according to a study. The Bank of Korea on Tuesday said long-term unemployed people, who accounted for 36.1 percent or 300,000 of all unemployed people in 2013, multiplied to reach 45.9 percent or 500,000 last year.

Most Families Fail to Spot Suicide Warning Signals

Nine out of 10 people who commit suicide send clear warning signals such as excessive drinking or depression, but their environment often misses them, according to a recent report by the Ministry of Health and Welfare. The ministry interviewed family members of 391 people who killed themselves from 2015 to 2018. Some 92.3 percent gave warning signs, but the families of 77 percent of them did not notice.

Travel Agents Suffer Amid Boycott of Japan

A boycott of Japan here led to an 82.3-percent decline in travel bookings to the island country at Hana Tour last month compared to the same period of 2018. It fell 76.9 percent on-year in August and 75.4 percent in September, and at rival Mode Tour it plummeted 91.9 percent in October. Travel agencies are suffering because customers are not traveling to alternative destinations either. Hana Tour and Mode Tour both suffered operating losses in October.

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

Unless its aim is to traffic in mercenaries, US needs to immediately call off unreasonable pressure

The US is ramping up an all-out pressure campaign to greatly increase South Korea’s financial contributions to US Forces Korea. According to reports, the US is demanding South Korea contributes US$4.7 billion. That’s almost five times the US$1.038 billion share for this year. The South Korean government needs to take a firm stand against this unreasonable demand from the US.

S. Korea reportedly considering putting off GSOMIA termination date

As the scheduled termination date for its intelligence-sharing agreement with Japan approaches, South Korean is reportedly considering postponing the termination until a time when the two countries can reach a resolution to their current dispute on trade and historical issues. On Aug. 23, Seoul sent an official message to Tokyo announcing its decision to pull out of the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA), and the pact is supposed to officially wrap up 90 days later, at 12:01 am on Nov. 23.

S. Korea, US to carry about joint air exercise to substitute Vigilant Ace

South Korea and the US will reportedly be carrying out an exercise to substitute their Vigilant Ace large-scale joint air exercise in the middle of November, sources said on Nov. 7. North Korea described the exercise as a “declaration of confrontation” and said that “our patience is nearing [its] limitations,” warning that Pyongyang could make a military response. The exercise will reportedly be held separately by the South Korean Air Force and the US 7th Air Force, which is stationed in South Korea, followed up by drills at the battalion level and below assessing joint readiness.

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

Samsung Galaxy Fold sold out in two seconds in China

The second batch of the Samsung Galaxy Fold will arrive in China on Monday in time for Singles’ day, drawing much attention to whether the foldable smartphone will help spur growth of the Korean manufacturer whose market share in China has fallen below one percent. According to foreign media including JD.com, the Samsung Galaxy Fold has been breaking records since its launch last Friday.

Two N. Korean fishermen deported back home, not knowing their repatriation

The two North Koreans deported back home last Thursday apparently had not known that they would be repatriated to the communist nation. The two fishermen had reportedly killed 16 fellow crew members on a squid fishing boat and fled to the South. One of the two North Koreans surnamed Oh was so shocked that he collapsed after seeing North Korean soldiers standing on the other side of the Panmunjom, raising suspicions over the decision of South Korea to return the men just in five days.

European countries mad over Trump’s pressure to increase military spending

The U.S., which has been asking South Korea to pay about five times the current share of defense costs, is also increasing the pressure on its European allies, including Germany, to provide more military spending. Against the U.S.’s determined pressure, its European partners are voicing doubt as well as criticism over their alliance.

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

U.S. Demands a Five-Fold Increase for Defense Contributions: Is South Korea Easy Prey?

The United States is asking South Korea for nearly $5 billion including costs for the rotation of USFK troops and the ROK-US combined training in the negotiations on defense contributions with South Korea. Reportedly, James DeHart, chief U.S. negotiator on defense contributions, presented the amount to South Korean government officials on November 6. This is more than five times this year's contribution (1.3 trillion won).

Unification Ministry Deports Two North Korean Fishermen Who Killed 16 Colleagues

Two North Korean fishermen tried to escape to the South through the East Sea after killing sixteen fellow fishermen on board, but the South Korean authorities repatriated them. This is the first time that the government deported North Korean defectors back to North Korea through Panmunjom. The Ministry of Unification announced that they deported two North Korean residents who were captured on the East Sea on November 2 back to North Korea through Panmunjom at 3:10 p.m. on November 7.

Can the Government Stop the Rise of Housing Prices by Pinpointing Areas Subject to an Initial Housing Price Cap?

On November 6, the government announced the areas subject to an upper limit in initial housing prices sold by private companies. They were 27 dongs including 22 dongs in 4 districts in Gangnam and five dongs in Mapo-gu, Yongsan-gu, Seongdong-gu, and Yeongdeungpo-gu. It was the so-called "pinpointing of dongs." It is significant that the government restored the cap on initial housing prices for homes built by private companies, four years and seven months after the policy was abolished. High initial prices drive apartment prices up, and this in turn leads to higher initial prices.

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

Race over Asiana Airlines boils down to economies of scale vs capital strength

The de facto two-way race over Korea’s full-service carrier Asiana Airlines will likely boil down to the choice of the scale of economies over finance as state authorities began scrutinizing over the candidates each with relative strengths in aviation and capital.

Korean millennials willingly give up food for luxury goods amid slowdown

A 23-year old university student surnamed Kim spent only 700 won ($0.6) to buy ham and tuna mayonnaise onigiri, a popular but cheap meal option available at all convenience stores, for his lunch. This has been his usual lunch, he said. With every penny saved from such frugal spending on food and daily necessities, Kim marched into a department store and bought Off-White sneakers that cost more than 1 million won a pair without hesitation.

Hyundai Motor to develop flying car by 2023, commercialize it by 2029: Chung Euisun

South Korean auto mogul Hyundai Motor Group’s heir apparent has vowed that the auto group will develop its own flying car technology by 2023 and commercialize air taxi service by 2029 in partnership with promising future mobility technology and service startups across the world. Chung Euisun, executive vice chairman at Hyundai Motor Group, unveiled such an ambitious urban air mobility (UAM) plan to reporters after the Mobility Innovators Forum 2019 hosted by Hyundai Motor in San Francisco, the United States on Friday (local time).

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Lee Kyung-sik edt@koreapost.com

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