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S. Korea to spend big on promoting innovative growth

All Headlines 14:30 August 13, 2018

SEJONG, Aug. 13 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's government will spearhead its innovative growth by spending big on key sectors in hopes that the private sector will follow suit, the finance ministry said Monday.

A total of 5 trillion won (US$4.4 billion) will be spent to nurture eight critical sectors such as autonomous driving and smart factories, with focus placed on blockchain, big data and artificial intelligence.

The earmarked budget for next year represents a sharp 65 percent increase from this year's estimate, according to the ministry.

"The measures will help facilitate the platform economy, which in turn will help speed up innovative growth," the ministry said.

Earlier, the ministry said state-led companies plan to spend over 30 trillion won in the eight leading sectors such as bio business by 2022, which could draw in private companies to invest and build up those areas going forward.

Separately, the government will spend 60 billion won in nurturing a total of 10,000 specialists for such promising sectors over the next five years, it added.

Innovative growth is one of the key economic goals sought after by the Moon Jae-in government, along with income-led growth.

The government earlier unveiled a set of support measures to boost innovative growth by providing funding and other incentives to eight key sectors such as smart farms, smart cities, fintech, drones and electric vehicles and artificial intelligence.

Seoul said it will also take drastic measures to ease regulations that have been blocking new industries and technologies from moving forward.

The ministry said the government will launch a 2.6 trillion won investment fund for startups this year, the first portion of a proposed 10 trillion won investment fund that is to be created by 2020.

Under the comprehensive plan, the government will focus on expanding the money supply for fledgling enterprises and creating a venture-friendly environment.

The ministry said a total of 300,000 jobs will be newly created by 2022 under the support measures.

President Moon Jae-in tests a smart media wall using fifth-generation (5G) technology at a research and development complex in Seoul on May 17, 2018. (Yonhap)

sam@yna.co.kr
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