Bye Bye Korea

Korea Times (Seoul, Korea), March 15, 2001 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Bye Bye Korea


Korea appears to be suffering from a ``bye-bye'' syndrome these days.

Emigrants say bye-bye to Korea. Frustrated foreign investors and tourists may soon say bye-bye to Korea. Many orphaned children say bye-bye to Korea after being rescued from their loneliness by new parents abroad. Many newlyweds and, these days, even elderly folks say bye-bye to each other.

Incompetent or aged wage earners are forced to say good-bye to companies they have worked at for so long. Talented workers are saying good-bye to companies to find jobs at other workplaces in search of better pay.

Many new military draftees are said to be slipping out of the barracks, as they are unable to undergo alleged hardship of basic training.

As many as 53,000 visitors attended the annual emigration fair held at the Convention & Exhibition Center in southern Seoul earlier this month.

Potential emigrants, mostly in their 30s and 40s, accounted for the majority of the fair goers. They said they want to leave Korea for a better leisurely life in such countries as Canada, the United States, Australia and New Zealand. They said they want to leave their homeland to help their children get a better education. Some of them said they want to emigrate abroad out of disillusionment with the Korean political situation.

Last year, 15,307 Koreans emigrated abroad. This year about 20,000 are expected to say good-bye to Korea when they leave for their new home. While this certainly enriches the receiving countries, it is raising worries of a brain drain out of Korea.

As the economy is recovering from the currency crisis, there are signs that Korea is returning to the old days of protectionism and highlighting the negative aspects of foreign investment.

The more immediate and obvious economic advantages of pouring foreign investment into Korea have waned.

A return to protectionism will embolden foreign investors to say bye-bye to Korea. European Union Chamber of Commerce in Korea (EUCCK) president Jacques Beyssade said last week, ``Let's make sure that `Buy Korea' does not translate into `Bye-bye Korea' from the foreign investors' point of view.''

President Kim Dae-jung has repeatedly emphasized the importance of foreign investment. He said foreign direct investment (FDI) brings in long-term funds, which do not entail interest payment obligation. He said FDI creates jobs, promotes managerial transparency, expands exports, and brings in foreign technology. FDI strengthens national defense, bolsters national pride and makes national companies more prominent worldwide, he said.

Upon assuming the presidency three years ago, he made it a rule to meet any foreign CEO as long as his or her company is committed to investing more than 50 million dollars in Korea. Thus in the first year of his presidency, it was a daily event for Kim to meet foreign CEOs.

A one-stop service center catering to foreign investors has been operating since his inauguration at the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency.

Kim also instructed the economic ministries to select a spokesman for foreign journalists and investors. He invited international businessmen in Korea to a series of meetings at Chong Wa Dae. Model foreign business entities were given a congratulatory citation.

As a result of these efforts, Korea was able to attract foreign investment in amounts unprecedented under previous administrations. The FDI amount that came in over the past three years is larger than the aggregate FDI amount Korea attracted in the past four decades before President Kim took the oath.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Bye Bye Korea
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?