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Cheong Wa Dae Demands Samsung Group to “Pay Expenses for Event”

Cheong Wa Dae Demands Samsung Group to “Pay Expenses for Event”

Posted September. 07, 2004 21:48,   


Public criticism is rising at the fact that Yang Jung-chul, the public relations officer at Cheong Wa Dae, called a high-ranking official of the Samsung Group on September 3 and requested him to share expenses for the “Proclamation Ceremony for Digital Broadcasting,” held in Agri-Trade Center in Yangjae-dong, Seoul.

As this suspicion arose and was broadcasted by an internet media site, “e-daily,” Yang announced in the pressroom at Cheong Wa Dae on September 7 and admitted his request for the sharing of expenses.

According to Yang, as opening of the event was imminent around the end of last month, he received a call from the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy saying, “Three of the electronics companies that were supposed to participate in the event are saying that they cannot share expenses in this event,” and then called Vice President L at the restructuring headquarters at Samsung and requested him to take part in sharing the expenses, saying, ”Reflecting on the intent of this event, it is correct that the electronics company should also share in the expenses. I called because there was a fiasco in the plan.” The three electronics companies simply participated in this event and were in a position to neither supervise nor sponsor the event.

Yang also said, “During the phone call, I also explained with civility the intent of this event and that the broadcasting stations and related ministries also shared the expenses despite their difficult situations,” and apologized, saying, “The official at Samsung would not have found my words as pressing, but I do realize it was an inappropriate way of handling the situation.”

Previously, Yang was directly rebuked by President Roh for making a false statement saying, “I did call the official at Samsung, but I wasn’t able to get through,” before admitting his actions.

On the other hand, the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy had discussed the issue of sharing expenses with the three participating electronics companies (Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics, Erae Electronics) which are manufacturers of digital TVs before the event, but the electronics companies refused, saying, “We cannot share the expense” The expenses of this event came to a total of 800 million won, and it was known the Korean Broadcasting Commission, which supervised the event, had covered a large portion of the expenses with the Broadcasting Development Fund.

Jung-Hun Kim jnghn@donga.com