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Yonhap News Summary

Yonhap News Summary 17:05 January 07, 2022

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

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(LEAD) Internet-only bank K-Bank begins process of going public

SEOUL -- K-Bank, a South Korean internet-only bank, said Friday it has begun the process of an initial public offering (IPO) as part of efforts to raise funds to strengthen its foothold as a major digital financial platform.

K-Bank sent a request for proposal to local and foreign securities firms earlier in the day, the first step of a company going public. It also plans to select a lead manager for an IPO by next month, according to company officials.

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S. Korea calls N.K. claim of hypersonic missile launch 'exaggerated'

SEOUL -- South Korea's defense ministry said Friday that North Korea's claim that it has successfully test-fired a hypersonic missile this week appears to be "exaggerated," assessing Pyongyang has yet to secure technologies for such an advanced flight vehicle.

Its initial analysis has found that the missile, launched Wednesday, traveled less than 700 kilometers at a top speed of Mach 6 -- six times the speed of sound -- at an altitude of below 50 km, the ministry said.

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Same sex couple loses suit against state health insurer over spousal coverage

SEOUL -- A Seoul court on Friday ruled against a same sex couple demanding the same spousal health insurance coverage as heterosexual couples, saying matrimony in South Korea is still considered a union between a man and a woman.

In February of last year, So Seong-wook filed the administrative lawsuit against the National Health Insurance Service (NHIS) after the agency canceled So's coverage under the insurance program of his male partner's employer.

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S. Korean, Japanese nuclear envoys discuss N. Korea's missile test

SEOUL -- Top nuclear envoys of South Korea and Japan had phone talks Friday to share the assessment of North Korea's latest missile test and agreed to continue efforts to resume dialogue, Seoul's foreign ministry said.

Noh Kyu-duk, special representative for Korean Peninsula peace and security affairs, and his Japanese counterpart, Takehiro Funakoshi, discussed the issue after the North fired what it claimed to be a hypersonic missile into the East Sea on Wednesday.

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Moon calls for close cooperation with USFK to curb spread of COVID-19 at U.S. bases

SEOUL -- President Moon Jae-in on Friday ordered aides to closely cooperate with U.S. troops stationed in South Korea to curb the spread of COVID-19 at U.S. military bases here.

Moon also instructed aides to come up with enhanced antivirus measures for citizens and business facilities near U.S. military bases, presidential spokesperson Park Kyung-mee said in a statement.

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Jeonju to host Asia-Pacific tourism conference in 2023

SEOUL -- South Korea's southwestern city of Jeonju will host next year's annual conference of the Tourism Promotion Organization for Asia Pacific Cities (TPO), officials said Friday.

TPO, the largest international organization related to tourism in the Asia-Pacific region, was established in 2002 with the goal of developing the tourism industry through the formation of a network among regional cities. It has 136 cities in 16 countries, including South Korea, China and Japan, and 54 private organizations as members.

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(LEAD) Seoul shares end higher on tech gains

SEOUL -- Seoul shares ended higher Friday spurred by gains in tech shares, though investors remain concerned about the Fed's looming tapering move. The Korean won fell against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) rose 34.36 points, or 1.18 percent, to close at 2,954.89 points.

The KOSPI rebounded from a 2.3 percent drop in the previous two sessions. The decline was attributable to Fed meeting minutes that suggested the U.S. central bank may raise interest rates sooner and higher than expected.

(END)

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