KOREA REPORT - JANUARY, 2019.
his 2017 presidential campaign, candidate Moon Jae-in promised to create
800,000 jobs if elected. His employment pledge
appealed to many voters, including among the youth. Moon administration has
reportedly poured KW54 tril ($48.2 bil), involving a supplementary budget and
stabilization fund, into the employment-related segment over the past 20
months. But the result at the present stage falls far short of the stated goal.
As of Nov 2018, ¡°extended unemployment rate¡± among young people reached 21.6%,
the highest since authority started its estimation. The employment rate of
570,000 college graduates stood at 66.2% as of end 2017, down 1.5% on-year.
That figure was under 67% for the first time since 2011. In addition, total
employment rate for overall generation in 2018 is estimated to post 60.7% with
number of jobless people exceeding 1 mil. Amid worse-than-expected employment
segment score, President Moon said in New Year¡¯s message that he would
prioritize job creation. The outlook on 2019 hiring market is also gloomy,
according to Korea Labor Institute.
Ministry said it does not directly refer to NK as an enemy and takes a less
hostile tone toward the communist state in
its 23rd white paper published on 15th. The ministry¡¯s latest biennial white
paper addresses security threats, military policies and the regional security
environment. Defense Ministry eliminated the phrase specifically
describing NK as SKorea¡¯s ¡°enemy,¡± a move that reflects SKorea¡¯s efforts to
maintain a more peaceful mood with the North. The ministry explained that the
relationship with the North had improved as a result of last year¡¯s 3
inter-Korean summits, highlighting NK¡¯s promise to achieve denuclearization of
the global economy grew 3.7% last year, SKorea¡¯s growth marked a six-year low
of 2.7%. Government spending, however, surged 5.6%, the largest
increase in 11 years. Growth
contribution by government expenditures in the fourth quarter reached 1.2%, the
highest since the first quarter of 2009, while the private sector¡¯s
contribution shrank to negative 0.3% in the quarter. A recent fall in the
Korean economy is alarming. Exports from Jan 1-20 this year plunged 14.6%
on-year. Semiconductors, which amount for about 20% of nation¡¯s exports,
nose-dived 28.8% during the period. Shipment volume to China, Korea¡¯s largest
export market, slumped 22.5%.
Aramco will become the second-largest shareholder of Hyundai Oilbank with
purchase of an up to 19.9% stake in the firm.
Hyundai Oilbank expects to raise up to KW1.8 tril ($1.6 bil) in a pre-IPO
round. Aramco estimated the firm¡¯s value to be KW10 tril and set the value of
each share at around KW36,000. Aramco is currently the largest shareholder of
nation¡¯s third-largest refining company S-Oil with a 63.4% stake.
Korea¡¯s Composite Stock Price Index started the month at
2,010, 1.52% fall on China¡¯s drop in China¡¯s
manufacturers purchase index and continued to plummet to 1,993 on 3rd, breaking
the 2,000 barrier, on Apple¡¯s expectation of poor performance. It was the lowest
since Dec, 2016. KOSPI started to recover its strength due to fair wind from
USA, including USFED¡¯s dove¡¯s stance, positive negotiation between USA and
China on trade, even amid US government partial shutdown and Brexit. KOSPI hit 2,097 on 15th, 2,106 on 16th, 2,177
on 25th to come back to 2,200 level to
end the month at 2,204.
announced on 31st the bank signed a conditional MOU for M&A transaction
between HHI and DSME. KDB stated that HHI and SHI
were two only counterparts for the merger negotiation to build 'Big 2'
structure in the Korean shipbuilding industry, but SHI showed less interest in
participating. According to the deal, HHI buys KDB¡¯s shares in DSME, 55.7%
(worth KW2.15 tril), in cash, while KDB is increasing DSME¡¯s capital by issuing
massive new stocks. On 31st, HHI and KDB agreed on a framework agreement. KDB
commented that it is necessary to eliminate inefficiencies stemmed from
overlapped investments for enhancing DSME¡¯s competitiveness.
between SKorea and Japan are growing [p.2]
unemployment rate among young people reached 21.6%, despite pouring budget
Supreme Court Justice Yang Sung-tae was arrested on charges abusing his power
finished the year 2018 as the second-highest album seller in the US [p.6]
Ministry said it does not directly refer to NK as an enemy [p.7]
is yet to agree with the US for cost of maintaining US troops [p.7]
Jong-un held talks with Xi Jinping on a second summit with Trump [p.8]
growth marked a six-year low of 2.7% and industrial output fell 0.6% in Dec
trade surplus came to $1.3 bil in Jan [p.11]
exports to countries it has FTA with rose 5.5% on-year in 2018 [p.11]
posted KW243.77 tril ($219 bil) in sales and KW58.89 tril in operating profit
last year [p.14]
Electronics unveiled the world¡¯s first rollable OLED TV [p.15]
3 battery manufacturers, last year, won a total of KW110 tril ($97.6 bil)
global orders [p.16]
Aramco will become 2nd largest shareholder of Hyundai Oilbank with 19.9% stake
court on 10th slapped BMW Korea with KW14.5 bil ($12.9 mil) fine [p.18]
recovered its strength breaking 2,000 level to end the month at 2,204 [p.19]
Group was awarded new orders worth $16.192 bil in 2018, up by 45.2% on-year
signed conditional MOU for M&A transaction between HHI and DSME [p.22]
Subic yard filed for rehabilitation procedure at the local court [p.25]
companies expressed their interest in taking over Daesun Shipbuilding [p.26]
WHY HI AIR Scrubbers? --> Click to find out more.
solution for the antifouling industries. -->
Click to find out more.
ATTACHMENT: Korea Report - January 2019 (PDF FILE)
Please let us know if you have difficulty opening the file.