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Korea, Japan Mull Daylight Saving Time Next Year

Posted October. 07, 2009 07:28,   


Korea is reportedly considering implementation of daylight saving time, also called summertime, with Japan.

A high-ranking Seoul official said yesterday, “I understand that President Lee Myung-bak will propose adopting summertime at his summit with Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama Friday.”

The Korean government is collecting public opinions after making an internal decision to begin daylight saving time, or the setting of clocks ahead one hour in the summer, from April to September next year.

“Korea and Japan are in the same time zone and conduct frequent trade and human exchanges. So the simultaneous implementation of summertime will increase mutual benefits,” the official said.

“Japanese Prime Minister Hatoyama is also promoting green growth, so he favors the summertime system to help conserve energy.”

The joint introduction of daylight saving time is being welcomed by economic circles such as the Federation of Korean Industries. In Japan, a bill to that end was submitted to the Diet under Prime Minister Taro Aso, but was automatically scrapped after the Hatoyama administration was inaugurated.

At the Korea-Japan summit in June, Aso showed a positive response toward daylight saving time.

Korea last observed daylight saving time in 1988 for the Seoul Summer Olympics and Japan implemented the system for four years from 1948.

The economic benefits of the system are estimated at 136.2 billion won (116 million U.S. dollars), according to the Korean government. Joint implementation by both countries will create more benefits.

Korea, Japan and Iceland are the only member countries of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development that do not observe daylight saving time.

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