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Yonhap News Summary

All Headlines 16:59 August 30, 2016

The following is the second summary of major stories moved by Yonhap News Agency on Tuesday.

(LEAD) Gov't proposes 2017 budget in excess of record 400 trillion won

SEJONG -- The South Korean government aims for a 3.7 percent increase in its spending next year to push the annual budget above the 400 trillion won (US$358 billion) mark for the first time, with steep rises planned for youth job creation, expansion of custom-made welfare benefits and stabilization of public livelihoods, the finance ministry said Tuesday.

The proposed 2017 budget calls for boosting spending on job creation, education, defense, and culture and tourism by 10.7 percent, 6.1 percent, 4 percent and 6.9 percent, respectively, as the government will reinforce its bid to jump-start Asia's fourth-largest economy suffering from faltering exports and flaccid domestic demand.

S. Korea opens special fintech platform

SEOUL -- South Korea launched an "open platform" Tuesday to assist financial institutions in developing financial technology, called fintech, a government agency said, adding the system is the first of its kind in the world.

It is designed to offer standardized financial transaction programs involving all major banks and securities firms in the nation, according to the Financial Services Commission (FSS). Application programming interface (API) is used for that.

S. Korea's envoy in China hopes G-20 summit boosts Seoul-Beijing ties

BEIJING -- South Korea's top envoy in China expressed hope that the upcoming summit of the Group of 20 countries in Hangzhou early next month will provide a boost to Seoul-Beijing relations, his embassy said Tuesday.

South Korean Ambassador to China Kim Jang-soo made the remark in a recent interview with CCTV, China's state-run broadcaster, according to the embassy.

(LEAD) Top court orders retrial for Taekwang Group chief

SEOUL -- The nation's top court on Tuesday returned to a lower court a ruling that convicted the chairman of Taekwang Group on charges of embezzlement.

Lee Ho-jin was sentenced to 4 1/2 years in prison at the Seoul High Court in December 2012 for a series of corruption charges, including misappropriation of some tens of billions of won through manipulating books on textile sales.

(News Focus) Seoul pursues expansionary budget in 2017 to fuel growth

SEJONG -- The government's decision to expand its budget for 2017 comes as it seeks to prop up South Korea's economy faced with sagging exports and rising financial uncertainties stemming from a possible U.S. rate hike, officials and analysts said Tuesday.

The government's 2017 budget proposal calls for a 3.7-percent on-year rise with spending hitting 400.7 trillion won (US$358 billion), surpassing the 400 trillion won plateau for the first time in history.

(LEAD) S. Korea, Morocco agree to expand cooperation in education, culture, youth exchange

SEOUL -- South Korea and Morocco have agreed to tighten collaboration in cultural sectors that include education, sports and youth exchanges as they seek closer bilateral diplomatic ties, the foreign ministry said Tuesday.

In the sixth meeting of the bilateral joint cultural committee held a day earlier at the Moroccan foreign ministry, the countries reached the agreement under a shared understanding that exchanges between the two culturally rich nations would be mutually beneficial.

N. Korea using THAAD to incite antagonism toward S. Korea: report

SEOUL -- North Korea is using Seoul's decision to deploy an advance antimissile system on its soil to intensify hostility toward South Korea, a media report citing sources in the reclusive country said Tuesday.

A source in North Hamgyong Province told Radio Free Asia (RFA) that North Korea's propaganda machine has harshly criticized Seoul's decision to deploy the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system.

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