You are here: Home › Growing from strength to strength

Growing from strength to strength

   Aug 25, 2018
Credit : GMI Post

South Korea has seen impressive economic growth in the last 65 years. Widely regarded as one of Asia’s powerhouses, the country boasts of a technologically advanced industrial sector. This transition, however, did not happen overnight. South Korea realized early that economic growth would flourish further through trade. By building strong ties abroad, the country achieved the stability and prosperity that it still enjoys today.

“Korea lacks natural resources. In the 1950s, we were also recovering from a war. But we achieved economic success because of trade. We processed raw materials and technology from other countries, manufactured them, and then exported to overseas markets. That was how we survived,” said Korea International Trade Association (KITA) CEO and former Minister of Trade, Industry, and Energy Kim Youngju.

Korea International Trade Association (KITA) CEO and former Minister of Trade, Industry, and Energy Kim Young-ju

When growth picked up, Korea did not become complacent.

Busan-Jinhae Free Economic Zone (BJFEZ) Commissioner Jin Yanghyun recalled: “In the 1990s, Korea focused on attracting foreign investment. The country’s goal was to acquire technologies from foreign experts, which would later help in building on expertise across several advanced industries.”

BJFEZ attracts investment into the southeast part of Korea, including the country’s so-called Industrial Belt, and is regarded as one of the best free economic zones (FEZs) in Asia. South Korea has developed seven other FEZs to spur growth, among them Saemangeum-Gunsan FEZ, overseen by the Saemangeum Development and Investment Agency.

“There are currently five multinationals that have invested here and we have ongoing infrastructure projects to attract more investors. Access to China and highly- skilled, world-class Korean workers are some key advantages of Saemangeum,” Administrator and Vice Minister Lee Cheol-woo said.

So, investors continue to look to South Korea, including American companies.

AMCHAM Korea CEO James Kim said: “U.S. companies are here because they know it’s a good market. There’s a lot of innovation here, so it’s a great testing ground for companies. No one is stopping investments here.”

Meanwhile, homegrown SMEs have become more aggressive abroad following the global success of giants such as Samsung, Hyundai, and LG.

“South Korea is a gateway for international business, having established free trade agreements with several countries,” said Federation of Korean Industries Vice Chairman Kwon Tae-shin. The country currently has 15 FTAs with 52 countries.

“Korea is a big believer in free trade. Our FTAs encompass the United States, EU, ASEAN and China. The land area and the GDP covered by our FTA network comprises 75 percent of the world. We value these relationships and will continue to build on them,” Kwon said.

Apart from a supportive government, Korean conglomerates and SMEs also have access to several trade promotion associations, which provide domestic and overseas assistance for its members. KITA, which has 70,000 members and 15 overseas branches, as well as AMCHAM Korea help companies by providing information on attractive foreign markets and connecting them with potential partners worldwide.

For its part, AMCHAM Korea is proud of its contribution to South Korea’s economic growth.

“Our main priority is to help U.S. companies here in Korea. But of course, helping Korean companies invest in the U.S. also creates jobs for Americans. So, we are a big proponent of that,” Kim said.


As two rule breakers gave the Japanese film world hope in 2018, elsewhere eyes turned to China

By Mark Schilling
- via The Japan Times    Dec 19, 2018

The Japanese movie business is something like a restaurant where new cooks and waiters arrive as old ones retire or die, but the menu remains ...

Western Australian council is first adopter of Datacom's new local government technology

   Dec 03, 2018

Datacom has rolled out the first phase of its customer service system for the town of Manjimup in Western Australia. Kicking off with Service Reque...

Lynchburg: a city of opportunity

   Oct 24, 2018

Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, the city of Lynchburg, Virginia, is distinctive not only for its natural beauty, but also for its world-class ...


Global challenges lie ahead as sōgō shōsha hunt for growth

By Patrick Ryan
- via The Japan Times    Dec 17, 2018

While many global companies, including the s?g? sh?sha, face similar political, economic, social, technological, managerial and other risks —...

Irish diagnostics expert to help Asian drugmakers enter global market

   Oct 20, 2018

As several Irish health care companies branch out, Diaceutics stands out among its peers because of its crucial role in the industry as the leading...

Irish firm hauls the construction industry into the digital age

   Oct 20, 2018

While the world embraces the value of data and the transition toward digitalization, some industries still have a long way to go. Construction is o...


Japanese firms are among the foreign investors betting on India’s green energy push

via The Japan Times    Dec 17, 2018

Foreign investment in India’s renewable energy sector has picked up speed in the last four years, with investors including Japanese firms lay...

It's time to turn manufacturing on its head

By Tony Richards, President and CEO of Impact Dakota
-    Apr 24, 2018

The leader of a major business group in North Dakota has issued a call for government and industries to break away from long-held notions about eco...

An American SME enjoys success in Japan with a start-up distributor

By Doug Taeckens, CEO of Pace Solutions
-    Apr 04, 2018

As Japan is a very complex market, some American companies have found it hard to succeed in the country without a partner that has in-depth knowled...

latest special features:

Upcoming Reports from

Malaysia 2018

See Preview »

Global Media Inc. and Foreign Affairs, following their successful 2013 report, return to Malaysia this year to highlight the country's increasing i...

Southeast USA

See Preview »

Global Media Inc. continues its coverage of the United States with its upcoming Special Business Report on Southeast USA, with the team traveling a...

Northern Italy 2018

See Preview »

Global Media Inc. continues its coverage of the European Union with its upcoming Special Business Report on Northern Italy. The report, in partners...

  • Global Media is your partner in reaching a powerful international audience through high-level economic reporting.

    Our ambition is to highlight under-reported developments and opportunities around the world, and allow leaders in these regions and sectors to take their message to the highest global level. We partner with top media to communicate with the world’s most powerful audiences. We specialize in communication and branding initiatives that help our clients effectively get their messages to their existing and potential partners. We achieve results for our clients by introducing them and their initiatives to an audience of elite international business and government leaders.

    Global Media Inc. is an independent media agency with offices in Hong Kong and Canada. GMI has more than a decade of experience in the writing, researching, and production of promotional country reports, with media partners from East Asia to North America. We have teams worldwide that develop country and thematic reports on the latest economic trends and developments.

    We are a media partner of Foreign Affairs,the United States’ most influential publication, published by the New York-based Council on Foreign Relations.

    Nearly a century old, there isn’t a more influential or higher-reaching publication in the United States than Foreign Affairs. The journal is ranked #1 in influence by U.S. opinion leaders in a recent nationwide study conducted by Erdos and Morgan, the premier business-to-business research firm. Their findings place Foreign Affairs ahead of all media, both print and broadcast, including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, and The Washington Post.


    “We were extremely impressed with how efficient, well-coordinated, responsive and reliable the Global Media Inc. team was. We owe them a lot for their professionalism. We were very pleased with the outcome, and the article was very well-written. We hope to have an opportunity to work with Global Media Inc. again in the near future.� – Japan Airport Terminal Co. Ltd.
    “The Global Media team’s professionalism was excellent. Their team was great and always gave us the right suggestions and information. The product was excellent, and we were very happy to have such a great opportunity working with their excellent team.â€� – National Graduate Institute of Policy Studies (GRIPS)
    “We were honored to be chosen as one of the good universities in Japan. This article conveyed Seigakuin University’s educational ideals and the message from President Akudo. The advertisement was conspicuous and gave a good impression that Seigakuin nurtured students to contribute to world peace. We really appreciated what Global Media Inc. had did for us.â€� – Seigakuin University

    Whom we have featured:

    • Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard
    • Australian Foreign Affairs Minister (and former Prime Minister) Kevin Rudd
    • Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe
    • Qatari Minister of International Trade and Industry Dato’ Sri Mustapa bin Mohamed
    • Japanese Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Yoshiaki Takaki
    • Taiwanese Foreign Minister Yang Chin-Tien
    • Taiwanese Finance Minister Lee Sush-Der
    • Taiwanese Economic Affairs Minister Shih Yen-Shiang
    • Taiwanese National Science Council Minister Lee Lou-Chuang,
    • Taiwanese Deputy Minister of Transport and Communications Yeh Kuang-Shih
    • Taiwanese Political Deputy Minister of Education Dr. Lin Tsong-Ming
    • Indonesian Ambassador to the United States Dr. Dino Patti Djalal
    • Indonesian Investment Coordinating Board Chairman Gita Wirjawan
    • Philippine President Benigno S. Aquino III
    • Philippine Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile