RoK seeks foreign investment to bolster recovery

Republic of Korea (RoK) plans to ease regulations to attract more overseas investment and stimulate weak domestic demand, the Ministry of Strategy and Finance said Wednesday.

The economy is recovering from th

RoK's trucks heading to the inter-Korean industrial complex in Kaesong, DPRK, at the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine office, just south of the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas, in Paju, about 45 km (28 miles) north of Seoul, September 1, 2009.

e global downturn thanks largely to government stimulus measures, but the ministry said these were unsustainable in the long term.

It said the export-dominated economy could also be hit by a delayed recovery in overseas markets, rising oil prices and a strengthening local currency.

"As an economy that depends much on external factors, we need to strengthen our domestic demand base in order to accelerate economic recovery and keep the rebound sustainable," the ministry said in a statement.

Among proposals to spur foreign investment, the ministry said overseas investors planning to set up a theme park would be able to lease land cheaply from government-invested firms and local state enterprises.

It plans to ease rules on foreign education institutes in Korea, in an attempt to reduce a deficit caused by a growing number of students seeking education abroad.

In a bid to encourage people to spend more, the government is considering relaxing regulations on building golf courses nationwide. It plans to invest more in tourism infrastructure, especially in farming and fishing villages.

"Currently, the economy is entering an overall recovery phase but the private sector still lacks self-sustaining capacity," Finance Minister Yoon Jeung-Hyun told a policy meeting Wednesday.

"Our policy efforts will be focused on resuscitating investment during the second half," Yonhap news agency quoted him as saying.

Yoon said the government will "aggressively" ease regulations, especially in the services sector, to try to lure corporate investment. 

Source: AFP

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