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Yonhap News Summary

All Headlines 13:30 April 08, 2016

The following is the first summary of major stories moved by Yonhap News Agency on Friday.

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France to impose own sanctions on N. Korea: diplomat

PARIS/SEOUL -- France will adopt strong standalone sanctions against North Korea to punish the regime for its defiant nuclear and missile tests as Pyongyang shows no intention of giving up its weapons programs through talks, a senior French diplomat said.

Emmanuel Lenain, director-general of the French foreign ministry's directorate for Asia and Oceania, said in an interview with the Joint Press Corps that although France believes the North Korean nuclear issue should ultimately be resolved through dialogue, now is the time to put further pressure on Pyongyang.

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Kim Jong-un inspects machine plant to spur production ahead of party congress

SEOUL -- North Korean leader Kim Jong-un inspected a machine plant to call for increased production, the country's state-run news agency said Friday in the runup to the ruling party's much-trumpeted congress in May.

The latest field guidance, whose date and exact location were not disclosed by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), followed Kim's previous public outing to watch the military's test fire of a surface-to-air guided missile launcher a week earlier.

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Chinese insurer gains footing in S. Korea through M&As

SEOUL -- China's Anbang Insurance Group has gained footing in South Korea's insurance market by acquiring two local insurers over the past year, industry people said Friday.

Anbang Insurance became the first Chinese insurer to advance into the domestic insurance market by acquiring a controlling 63-percent stake in Tongyang Life Insurance Co. for 1.13 trillion won (US$973 million) last year.

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Corporate earnings outlook upgraded on techs, refiners

SEOUL -- South Korea's listed firms are expected to have racked up improved earnings in the first quarter, helped by a good performance from logistics firms, oil refiners and tech firms, including Samsung Electronics Co., data showed Friday.

The combined operating profit estimate for 192 listed companies was raised by 2.26 percent to 30.67 trillion won (US$26.4 billion) for the first quarter as of Wednesday from a month earlier, according to the data by financial information provider FnGuide.

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Q1 car sales in S. Korea hit quarterly high on tax cut, new models

SEOUL -- Domestic sales by automakers in South Korea hit their quarterly high during the first three months of this year, bolstered in part by the government's push to extend a tax cut on car purchases, industry data showed Friday.

Five automakers, including Hyundai Motor Co., and Kia Motors Corp., along with two commercial vehicle manufacturers, including Tata Daewoo Co., sold a combined 368,492 cars during the January-March period. This is up from the previous year's 362,856 units.

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'Descendants of the Sun' searched over 10 bln times on Weibo

SEOUL -- South Korean TV series "Descendants of the Sun" has topped 10 billion in the accumulated number of searches for the show on Weibo, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter.

As of Friday morning, the drama depicting a romance between a soldier (Song Joong-ki) and a doctor (Song Hye-kyo) in a fictional war-torn country in the Mediterranean has been searched 10.3 billion times, the largest, on Weibo.

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(Yonhap Feature) 'Jurassic World' back in S. Korea's Goseong

GOSEONG, South Korea -- "Jurassic World" has come back. Forget Hollywood this time! It's South Korea's turn.

Dinosaurs are loose in Goseong, a southern town about a five-hour drive from Seoul.

Steven Spielberg's computer graphics will have to give way to life-size replicas of dinosaurs, digital exhibits and interactive programs being played out at the Gyeongnam Goseong Dinosaur World Expo.
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