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Yonhap News Summary

All News 13:39 April 11, 2016

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

Park: 'Descendants of the Sun' exemplary case of cultural enhancement

SEOUL -- President Park Geun-hye on Monday praised "Descendants of the Sun," a popular South Korean soap opera, as an exemplary case of the positive effects of cultural content on the manufacturing industry.

The drama -- which tells the story of a South Korean army captain sent on a U.N. peacekeeping mission to a distant fictional country -- has gained immense popularity not only in South Korea but China and other countries as well.

BOK chief to attend G-20 central bankers' meeting in Washington

SEOUL -- The head of South Korea's central bank will attend the upcoming meeting of finance ministers and central bank governors from the world's 20 advanced and developing countries in the United States, the bank said Monday.

Bank of Korea (BOK) Gov. Lee Ju-yeol will head to Washington on Tuesday for the G-20 finance ministers and central bank governors' meeting, slated to be held Thursday and Friday (Washington time), according to the BOK.

S. Korea keeps close tabs on N. Korea’s possible nuclear test

SEOUL -- South Korea is closely monitoring North Korea over its possible fifth nuclear test this week, a presidential official said Monday.

Presidential spokesman Jeong Yeon-guk did not provide details but said Seoul is keeping very close tabs on developments taking place in the isolationist country.

There has been speculation that Pyongyang may carry out a fifth nuclear test ahead of its founder Kim Il-sung's birthday, which falls on Friday. The founder is the late grandfather of the country's current leader, Kim Jong-un.

(LEAD) N.K. military intelligence officer defected to S. Korea last year: Seoul

SEOUL -- A ranking North Korean military officer in charge of conducting intelligence operations defected to South Korea last year, Seoul's defense ministry said Monday, as the North's leader is tightening his grip on the regime.

A North Korean senior colonel, whose name has been withheld, defected in 2015 after working at the North's reconnaissance bureau tasked with carrying out espionage missions against the South, the ministry said.

GM Korea's new Malibu to intensify competition in midsize sedan market

SEOUL -- GM Korea Co.'s planned launch of the new Malibu next month is expected to intensify competition in the midsize sedan market here where major automakers are already clashing with their latest popular models, industry sources said Monday.

The midsize sedan market here is being dominated by such popular models as Hyundai Motor Co.'s Sonata and Kia Motors Corp.'s K7. Recently, Renault Samsung Motors Co. unveiled the SM6, which has been drawing a better-than-expected market response.

Hyundai Heavy and two affiliates plagued by dearth of orders

SEOUL -- Hyundai Heavy Industries Co., a major South Korean shipyard, and its two affiliates, have suffered a sharp drop in their orders in the first two months of the year amid a protracted industry slump, industry sources said Monday.

According to the sources, Hyundai Heavy, Hyundai Mipo Dockyard Co. and Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries Co. clinched a combined US$1.31 billion worth of orders during the January-February period, compared to the previous year's $2.55 billion.

S. Korea's CO2 emissions grow fastest among OECD members

SEOUL -- South Korea's carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions have grown at the fastest pace among OECD member nations over the past two decades, mainly due to the country's heavy reliance on fossil fuels, bucking the global trend of reducing greenhouse gases, data showed Monday.

CO2 emissions per person in South Korea more than doubled from 5.4 tons in 1990 to 11.4 tons in 2013, while the corresponding average figure for the OECD declined 7.2 percent to 9.5 tons during the same period, according to the data compiled by the International Energy Agency (IEA).

(Yonhap Feature) Jeju in transition from resort island to real estate hot spot

JEJU ISLAND, South Korea -- If you think of Jeju Island as just a laid back vacation spot or a place for fishermen and tangerine growers, give it a second look.

This southern resort island known for its scenic beach and volcanic landscape has drawn a huge influx of Chinese travelers over the past five years thanks to visa-free entry for up to 30 days and the rising popularity of Korean pop culture.


Orioles' Kim Hyun-soo gets 2 hits in MLB debut

SEOUL -- The Baltimore Orioles South Korean outfielder Kim Hyun-soo recorded two hits in his Major League Baseball (MLB) debut Sunday.

Batting ninth and playing left field, Kim went 2-for-3 with a run scored as the Orioles defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 5-3 at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in Baltimore. The Orioles improved to 5-0 this season.


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