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Gov't to support R&D for auto parts makers

All Headlines 11:00 June 14, 2018

SEOUL, June 14 (Yonhap) -- South Korea will spend 25 billion won (US$24 million) to support research and development (R&D) of local auto parts makers to help them catch up with the latest industry trends, the government said Thursday.

The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy said the program will target small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to help them better meet market demands as global automakers are embracing new trends of electric vehicles and self-driving cars.

The ministry said it will search for promising markets to foster new growth drivers for local parts makers and support their R&D efforts to raise their competitiveness.

The ministry also set aside 8.1 billion won to provide training for former auto workers to help those that lost jobs after General Motors closed its Gunsan factory in May.

Some 2,600 GM workers opted to for the voluntary retirement package, and its local part suppliers were also hit by the restructuring.

Former auto workers in Gunsan, as well as Changwon and Ulsan, the auto parts production hubs in the southeastern region, will get priority for the job training program, the ministry said.

The ministry said it will analyze the retired workers' skillsets and labor market demand in order to match them with new jobs.

General Motors' Gunsan plant on the southwestern coast was closed on May 31, 2018, as part of the global restructuring. (Yonhap)


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