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Moon says growth must improve people's lives to get necessary support

All Headlines 16:01 May 17, 2018

SEOUL, May 17 (Yonhap) -- Any economic or growth strategy must actually improve people's daily lives for it to gain enough public support for its continuation and further development, President Moon Jae-in said Thursday, calling for efforts to put the outcome of his administration's income and innovation-led growth strategies into practice.

In a meeting with some 80 government officials and local business leaders to check the progress of his new growth policies, the president insisted government efforts may be beginning to bear fruit, noting the number of new startups reached a record high of over 10,000 in January.

"The number increased 57 percent from the same month last year on increased investment in new venture firms. The number of electric vehicles purchased also more than doubled, while the number of businesses engaged in solar energy and drones also increased greatly," Moon told the meeting at a new science research and development center in Seoul.

"However, we are still short of visible achievements that the people can actually feel. It seems as though we are walking while our competitors in the global market are running," he said, according to pool reports. "Therefore, I wish to once again stress that what is more important than anything else is the speed.

"An innovation-growth boom can happen when the people can see and feel the progress," Moon added.

President Moon Jae-in (2nd from L) takes a sip of coffee delivered by a small, remotely controlled unmanned aerial vehicle while attending a special meeting to check the progress of his innovation-led growth strategy in Seoul on May 17, 2018. (Yonhap)

The president also underscored the government's role in promoting and facilitating growth.

"Innovation-led growth, of course, must be led by the private sector, but the government needs to actively promote it. First, we must expand the demand in the public sector to create a market at the initial stage," he said.

"I ask the government, local autonomous bodies and public enterprises to boldly develop new public needs to help create demands for new innovative products," the president said.

Moon also highlighted the need to create a better business environment for new, innovative firms through deregulation.

"I wish we were also more active in innovating regulation that creates hurdles to innovation-led growth. They need to be bold innovations that can overcome the traditional way of doing things," he said.

The president earlier promised to introduce what the government calls a "regulatory sandbox" that will allow businesses in new innovative industries to remain free of excessive regulations at least for a set period of time.

The president called for an early start.

"I ask you to boldly allow new innovations that may be allowed through a different interpretation of regulations and guidelines even before they are revised," he said.


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