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Outline of Prospective Areas for Relocation of Public Corporations Revealed

Outline of Prospective Areas for Relocation of Public Corporations Revealed

Posted May. 12, 2005 23:18,   


An outline of the local provinces to which major public corporations excluding the Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO) will relocate has been revealed.

According to the ruling Uri Party and high-ranking officials of the government on May 12, it is likely that the Korea Land Corporation will be moved to Busan, the Korea Highway Corporation to Gyeongnam Province, the Korea National Housing Corporation to Gwangju, the Agricultural and Fishery Marketing Corporation to Jeonbuk Province, the Korea National Oil Corporation to Ulsan, the Korea Gas Corporation to Jeonnam Province, and the Korea National Tourism Organization to Gangwon Province.

Daegu and Gyeongbuk Province are under review as a possible new home for the Korea Resources Corporation.

However, the ruling Uri Party and the government reportedly came to an agreement to exclude Chungcheong Province from the list of potential new locations for large public corporations on the assessment that including Chungcheong Province could undercut the goal of balanced regional development since it is already designated as the site of a new administrative center.

Taking into consideration that Gangwon Province and Jeonnam and Jeonbuk Provinces are relatively undeveloped, they also decided to grant them additional benefits to these regions, including actively proceeding with the relocation of mid-level public corporations, which will help increase the number of jobs as well as produce a positive effect on their economies.

An official of the ruling Uri Party said, “To my knowledge, since candidate regions for the relocation of public corporations were determined in a scientific and balanced way, taking into consideration the extent of accumulation of local industry bases and the possibility of exerting a favorable influence upon their economies, the working-level staff of the government party and local governments have not shown opposition over it.”

However, he added, “There is some room for adjustment among the top officials.”

Prior to this, on the morning of the same day, high-ranking officials of the ruling party, government, and Cheong Wa Dae—including Prime Minister Lee Hae-chan, Uri Party Chairman Moon Hee-sang, and Chief Secretary to the President for National Policy Kim Byung-joon—held a consultative meeting in order to intensively discuss the relocation of public corporations at the official residence of the prime minister in Samcheong-dong, Seoul.

In particular, regarding a plan for the relocation of the KEPCO, the government and the ruling party will choose one among the following three measures: to decide the new location of KEPCO in tandem with the location of the radioactive waste disposal plant; to move a large number of public corporations to a region that will not be housing the KEPCO as an incentive measure, and to postpone the decision on the relocation of the KEPCO for a considerable period of time.

However, a lawmaker from the ruling Uri Party, who attended the meeting, said, “If the consultation doesn’t produce a satisfactory result, the announcement on the relocation of public corporations may be put off until next month.”

In-Jik Cho cij1999@donga.com taewon_ha@donga.com