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  Korea Report - October 2019
  Author : Hwang & Co     Date : 19-11-06 15:45     Hit : 430    
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KOREA REPORT - OCTOBER, 2019.

SKorea became the first Asian country to sign a free trade agreement with a Central American trade bloc, composed of five countries, Honduras, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Costa Rica and Panama. Korea-Central America FTA took effect on Oct 1st, with initial effectuation with Honduras and Nicaragua. Korea expects close cooperation in the ocean cruise tourism sector by seeking to actively participate in revamping infrastructure involving terminals around Caribbean.

Kazakhstans competition authority has recently notified its approval of the merger between worlds two largest shipbuilders, HHI said on 29th. According to HHI, Kazakhstan government approved the tie-up with DSME after comprehensively reviewing the definition of related markets and evaluating competition limitations. This is the first approval for the tie-up as the plan is currently undergoing a review in five other regions, including SKorea, the EU, Japan, China and Singapore. The EU, which is believed to hold the key to the merger, plans to complete preliminary screening and apply for an audit in the coming weeks.

KSOE said on 28th that HHI, HMD and HSHI have seen a sharp upturn in their profitability on the strength of new orders for LNG carrier. According to KSOE, 38% of HSHI's 3Q revenue was logged in LNG carrier sector and HHI scored 40% of its 3Q revenue in LNG carrier order sales. HMD has been competing in multiple newbuild projects in small-sized LNG carrier and LNG bunkering vessel sectors. KSOE also noted, HHI, HSHI and HMD have won a total of 35 LNG DF vessels with five units completed and 30 units under construction.

SKorea has embarked on an autonomous ship project by investing KW160 bil ($130 mil), seeking to boost domestic eco-friendly and smart shipping industry and achieve 50% global market share by 2030. Industry Ministry and Oceans Ministry announced on 30th that the project they are jointly pursing has passed the preliminary feasibility studies. The project aims to develop key technologies related to autonomous navigation and system autonomy while laying foundation for early commercialization. The allocated funds will be invested over six years from 2020 to 2025.

TOPICS.

SKorea became first Asian country to sign FTA with Central American trade bloc [p.2]

Justice Minister Cho Kuk stepped down from his post 35 days after he was appointed [p.3]


Cyberattacks targeting nuclear plant operators occurred with number reaching 1,366 attempts [p.5]


SKorea passport has nearly topped the list as worlds most powerful [p.7]


Delegations from the US and NK held a meeting in Stockholm on 5th [p.8]


40% of this years budget for inter-Korean cooperation has not been spent [p.10]


SKorea made an inevitable decision to give up developing country status at WTO [p.12]


SKorea's trade surplus came to $5.39 bil in Oct, 93 straight months of surplus [p.13]


PERFORMANCE IN THIRD QUARTER [p.16]


Samsung Electronics was ranked sixth among 100 Best Global Brands in terms of value [p.17]


Posco hit the 1 bil ton milestone of crude steel production since 1973 [p.18]


Hyundai Oilbank developed and patented manufacturing process for VLSFO [p.18]


KDB is considering selling a majority stake in Daewoo E&C in about two years [p.20]


SKorea's foreign exchange reserves rose to a new high of $406.32 bil as of end Oct [p.20]


Bank of Korea on 16th decided to lower the key interest rate from 1.5% to 1.25% [p.21]


Kazakhstan notified its approval of merger between HHI and DSME [p.21]


HHIs accumulated order intake by Sept came to $4.416 bil, 32.9% on-year decrease [p.23]


SHI bagged a total of $5.4 bil so far, 69% of its yearly goal of $7.8 bil [p.24]


SKorea has embarked on autonomous ship project by investing $130 mil [p.25]


INTRODUCTION

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