Go to contents

MOCT to Use Govt Fund to Support Joint Newspaper Delivery

MOCT to Use Govt Fund to Support Joint Newspaper Delivery

Posted April. 16, 2003 21:49,   


The Ministry of Culture and Tourism said that it would mobilize the culture promotion fund to finance a pilot joint newspaper delivery program, a decision that could spark yet another controversy.

The ministry further went on to say that it would discuss with the Fair Trade Commission to address the problem of the lopsided market-share structure, raising concern that the government intends to intervene in the newspaper market.

˝We plan to review the joint newspaper delivery system currently pilot-serviced in Gwacheon City in Gyeonggi-do,˝ said Lee Chang-dong, Minister of Culture and Tourism during the culture and tourism committee meeting held in the National Assembly on April 15.

˝Once the newspaper industry forms a corporation for the joint delivery system, we plan to support the program by using the culture industry promotion fund,˝ the besieged minister said of his new plan. ˝The Korea Newspaper Association, an organizer of the program, has not asked for financial support yet, however.˝

˝The structure of the newspaper market, where top three companies grab almost 75% of the whole pie, could be seen as a cause of concern,˝ noted Lee. ˝The ministry, therefore, is mulling taking a due action to address the problem.˝

˝The Fair Trade Commission will investigate the case if newspapers fail to follow the new law on fair competition in the market,˝ he pointed out. ˝Since the trade commission could play a significant role in changing the lopsided market structure, we plant to closely cooperate with the commission for this matter.˝

˝We understand, however, that we need to approach this touchy issue carefully and seek public consent before taking any action to restrain the dominance by the top three newspaper,˝ Lee added.

Seung-Heon Lee ddr@donga.com