To tackle a kimchi crisis, South Korea banks on massive cabbage warehouses

SEOUL – South Korea’s kimchi makers are in serious pain: a climate change-induced shortage of cabbages sent prices rocketing this year, exacerbating damage inflicted by cheaper offerings from Chinese competitors. Such is the sense of crisis surrounding the spicy pickled side dish eaten daily by many Koreans and central to Korean identity, that the government […]

V-P Harris pledges to consult S. Korea over electric vehicle subsidy concerns

TOKYO – United States Vice-President Kamala Harris told South Korea’s prime minister on Tuesday that Washington will work to address Seoul’s concerns over recently enacted electric vehicle (EV) subsidies that could disadvantage Asian automakers. The US$430 billion (S$617 billion) Inflation Reduction Act enacted in August consists of a host of US President Joe Biden’s priorities, […]

Row over EV subsidy rules overshadows S. Korean president’s first US visit

SEOUL – South Korea’s opposition to new rules governing US subsidies for electric vehicles will overshadow President Yoon Suk-yeol’s first official trip to the United States, disrupting a recent display of alliance strength with Washington. Mr Yoon, who was in London for the funeral of Queen Elizabeth, departed for New York late Monday to attend […]

South Korea repatriates remains of 88 Chinese soldiers killed in Korean War

SEOUL – South Korea repatriated Friday the remains of 88 Chinese soldiers killed during the Korean War, the first such ceremony since South Korea’s President Yoon Suk-yeol took office in May. South Korean honour guards handed over wooden caskets with the remains during a ceremony at Incheon airport near Seoul, where they were loaded onto […]

North Korea’s Parliament meets in effort to build ‘socialist fairyland’

SEOUL – North Korea’s Parliament convened this week to pass legislation aimed at turning the country into a “beautiful and civilised socialist fairyland,” state media reported on Thursday. The North Korean Supreme People’s Assembly (SPA) met for its first session on Wednesday, and adopted laws on landscaping and rural development, state news agency KCNA reported. […]

South Korea sees ‘betrayal’ in Biden’s electric vehicle push

SEOUL – South Korea views new US rules that favour American-made electric vehicles and batteries as a “betrayal”, a senior official in Seoul said, an issue that threatens to complicate economic and security cooperation between the close allies. The dispute stems from provisions in the Inflation Reduction Act signed last month by President Joe Biden, […]

North Korea’s Covid-19 restrictions intensify human rights violations: UN

SEOUL (REUTERS) – North Korea’s coronavirus curbs have aggravated the country’s human rights violations, a United Nations report said on Wednesday (Aug 31), citing extra restrictions on access to information, tighter border security and heightened digital surveillance. The report, released by the UN human rights office in Seoul and to be presented to the General […]

South Korea’s Yoon pardons Samsung’s Lee Jae-yong to counter ‘economic crisis’

SEOUL (REUTERS) – South Korea’s President Yoon Suk-yeol pardoned Samsung Electronics vice-chairman Lee Jae-yong on Friday (Aug 12), with South Korea’s Justice Ministry saying the business leader was needed to help overcome a “national economic crisis”. The pardon is largely symbolic, with Lee already out on parole after serving 18 months in jail for bribery relating […]

North Korea to convene two key meetings, including one to review anti-epidemic policy

SEOUL (REUTERS) – North Korea will convene two key meetings, including one to review the country’s anti-epidemic policy, in coming weeks, state media said on Monday (Aug 8), as it claims no new Covid-19 cases since late July. The North Korean Supreme People’s Assembly (SPA), the isolated state’s rubber-stamp Parliament, will meet on Sept 7 […]

South Korea’s first homegrown fighter jet completes test flight

SEOUL (REUTERS) – South Korea’s domestically developed fighter jet successfully completed its first test flight on Tuesday (July 19), a defence agency said, amid a push to replace ageing military jets in the face of nuclear and missile threats from neighbouring North Korea. The next-generation aircraft developed by Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) in a project […]