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Gaesong Information Session Cancelled

Posted May. 12, 2006 02:59,   


The Federation of Korean Industries (FKI) cancelled an information session on the Gaesong Industrial Complex that it planned to hold for large companies early next month.

The FKI decided to cancel the session at an emergency executive meeting on May 11 when Dong-A Ilbo reported that the Unification Ministry asked the FKI to help large companies to buy lots of the complex.

An official of the FKI explained, “We cancelled the session because the session would be meaningless if large corporations feel pressured.”

The FKI’s original plan was to hold an information session for large companies in early June, separately from the joint information session it will hold with the Korea Chamber of Commerce, Korea International Trade Association, and Korea Federation of Small and Medium Business.

Meanwhile, the Unification Ministry argued in its press release, “We did not ask the FKI to help large corporations move into the complex. Although the manager of construction support visited FKI with a director of Korea Land Corporation (KLC), it was just to listen to large corporations’ opinions.”

However, that is not true.

According to a source in the FKI, Kim, the manager of the ministry, with Yun, the KLC director, visited the International Cooperation division of the FKI on March 31 and said, “The tenants of the complex are mostly small processing companies. In order to fully realize the vision of inter-Korean economic cooperation, large companies need to move into the complex.”

Also, Kim himself said in a recent interview with Dong-A Ilbo, “I visited the FKI to explain the necessity of large corporate tenants to the complex.”

An official, who asked for anonymity, said, “The Unification Ministry is childishly playing upon words as the issue came under fire by saying that it didn’t ask for cooperation when it explained that large companies needed to move into the complex.”

Jeong-Hun Park sunshade@donga.com