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Yang Bin Discussed Investment Plans with Woori Bank before His Arrest

Yang Bin Discussed Investment Plans with Woori Bank before His Arrest

Posted March. 09, 2004 22:26,   


Hong Kong’s Euro-Asia Group Chairman Yang Bin, the once appointed leader for Sinuiju Special Administrative Region (SAR), was found to have met with representatives from Woori Bank right before his arrest to discuss investment issues.

Kwan San, the author of chairman Yang’s biography “An Unfortunate Man Who Stole the Fire,” released in Hong Kong on March 9, revealed in the book that “Woori Bank representatives were the last people that Yang Bin met before being escorted by Chinese police at 5:10 am on October 4, 2002.”

He claimed that “Lee Chong Hwi, executive vice president of Woori Bank, and his three accompanying members arrived in Yang Bin’s villa at 11 p.m. on October 3 and consulted on investing 10 billion yuan (1.4178 trillion won) for building a petrochemical plant, airport, and harbor in Sinuiju Special Administrative Region.”

He added, “Woori Bank planned on investing in Sinuiju on behalf of 100 or so Korean companies.”

Meanwhile, Woori Bank refuted, “It is true that we met Yang Bin at the time, but we have not reflected on any specific investment plans. It looks like Kwan San wrote in the biography as if Woori Bank requested the favor which was in fact what he really wanted to request from us.”

An officer from Woori Bank said, “We have heard North Korea’s plan in building Sinuiju as a financial hub and met Yang Bin to promote setting up banks in the zone with the cooperation of the North but has never proposed 10 billion yuan worth of investment plans as representing Korean companies.”

Suk-Ho Shin kyle@donga.com