Beijing, Shanghai- 23 September 2009 – Jeju Special Self-Governing Province, along with Jeju Free International City Development Center (JDC) and Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA), is holding investment seminar in Beijing and Shanghai to attract Chinese investors, property managers, tourism developers, investment companies and law firms as well as consulting firms in China. The investment seminars will provide potential investors with presentations on the prospects and scope of Healthcare Town projects, the Myth and History Theme Park and Global Education City in Jeju as well as the other core projects JDC is executing. The presentations for the investment seminars will be held at the Hilton Hotel in Beijing on the 23rd of September and the Westin Hotel in Shanghai, China on the 24th of September 2009.
The road show events are designed to coincide with the Chinese government’s recent deregulation on outward investment in the tourism and service fields, although it has been more focused on energy and manufacturing outward investment. The Chinese government raised the amount of investment requiring government approval to over 100 million dollars from the previous over 30 million dollars. Adapting the changes, more businessmen are coming to China in pursuit of investors and working to attract H.K. and Chinese businessmen from Southeast Asia.
Jeju, the heart of northeast Asia, has had strong ties with China since Qin Shi Huang dispatched representatives to Jeju 2,200 years ago to find the herb of eternal youth. Jeju ranks 10th among honeymoon destinations for China and in 2007 it was named a top 5 foreign tourist destination on the Internet site “ctrip," China’s biggest Internet site for tourism; in 2008 Jeju was announced as the number 1 honeymoon destination in the world for Shanghai city; and in 2009 former prime minister Zhu Rongji said that the landscape of Jeju is the world’s best.
Jeju offers investment incentives for joint ventures with foreign companies, a shortened administration process from 22 months to 8 months, a one-year visa to those who invest more than 200 thousand dollars and permanent residence for those who invest more than 500 thousand dollars.
Jong-IL Byon, The Chief Director of Jeju Free International City Development Center has high expectations for the investment seminar in China and emphasizes the importance of Chinese investors to make the projects a success. Jeju Special Self-governing province will continue working to attract Chinese investors by participating in the World Korean Business Convention in October in Incheon and the World Chinese Entrepreneurs Convention in November.
Jeju Free International City Development Center
The government established Jeju Free International City Development Center (JDC) to foster and support the Jeju Special Self-governing Province and accelerate the development of Jeju free international city under the Jeju Free International City Implementation Plan (Nov. 2001) and the Special Act on the Establishment of Jeju Special Self-governing Province and the development of Jeju Free International City (February 21, 2006).
Jeju Free International City Development Center (JDC) is a public corporation (article 261 of the special act) established to simultaneously pursue both public and private benefits in order to successfully implement Jeju Free International City development projects. This body is affiliated with the Ministry of land, transport and maritime affairs as a national government-sponsored organization.
JDC is currently planning and implementing six core projects to foster and support the Jeju Special self-Governing Province core industries (tourism, healthcare, education, environmentally-friendly agriculture, and high-tech industry). The six projects include the development of a resort-type residential complex, healthcare town, Global Education City, high-tech science & technology complex, myth & history theme-park, and Seogwipo tourism port.
The Jeju Healthcare Town is a joint project undertaken by the South Korean Government and the private sector. JDC (Jeju Free International City Development Center), which is implementing six core projects including Jeju Healthcare Town, hopes to attract medical travelers with the clean and beautiful natural environment of Jeju island combined with cutting-edge healthcare skills. Jeju Healthcare Town will hold a ground – breaking ceremony around the year-end and plan to open in early 2011. It will offer not only healthcare but leisure, entertainment, recreation, rest, education, culture, medical treatment and rehabilitation. It is being developed in three phases - Wellness Park, a medical relaxation complex for beauty, prevention, health and relaxation; Medical Park, a high-tech medical complex for various high-quality specialized treatments; and R&D Park, a medical R&D complex. International companies desiring to invest in related field will receive strengthened support, such as local tax exemption, provisions for housing, special employment benefits (support of approximately US$783 for newly hired employees for up to six months) and investment incentives ranging from corporate tax, registration tax and property tax breaks to special customs duty rates. The planned investment scale so far US$ 614.3 million, with the public sector providing US$122.6 million, while the remaining US$ 492.5 million come from the private sector. It already has signed MOUs with Seoul National University Hospital (SNUH) and Partners International Medical Services (PIMS), which is a subsidiary of PHS (Partners Healthcare System) and in charge of overseas business for PHS.
“Healthcare is no longer simply a regional issue,” said Jung-Il Byon, CEO of JDC. “The medical travel market is growing rapidly every year, and we believe that our international medical facilities, which focus not only on medicine, but also on wellness, will be among the premier healthcare facilities in the world. Every person should have the right to receive cutting-edge care at a fair price.”
JDC is also planning to develop a world-class mega theme park resort where visitors can experience the cultures and legends from countries across the globe as well as the world of movies. The approximately US$1.59 billion Myth and History Theme park will incorporate a studio theme park together with residential, commercial and retail outlets.
The theme park is expected to be completed in 2011 and will feature culture and entertainment from South Korea, China, South-east Asia, India, West Asia, Europe, the Americas and Africa. The Myths and History Theme Park will consist of A Zone, J Zone and H Zone. In August 2008, JDC signed an MoA with Berjaya Land to establish a joint venture to develop H Zone, the Myths and History Theme park, which will be designed to harmonize the world’s food and cultures with exhibits depicting China, South-East Asia, India, the Middle East, the Mediterranean, Germany, Eastern Europe, Russia, America and Africa. A Zone will be an entertainment destination combining a movie theme park, water park, top-class tourist facilities and other attractions. J Zone will be designed as a theme park combining myths and historical elements categorized into Promenade, Corealand, Tamlaland, and World of Legends as well as an Aerospace Museum.
JDC will also be promoting four other core projects on Jeju. These projects include Global Education City, a High-Tech Science & Technology Complex, Seogwipo Tourism Port and a Resort-Style Residential Complex. Berjaya Land of Malaysia is investing US$ 1.8 billion in the resort-type residential complex at Yerae area of Jeju. This investment by Berjaya is the largest single foreign investment in South Korea’s tourism industry since the inauguration of the new government in February 2008.
About Jeju Special Self-governing Province
Jeju is an island located off the southern tip of South Korea. Attracting about 5.9 million visitors last year, it is a popular tourist destination in Korea with UNESCO-designated tourist attractions and other tourism resources. Jeju dreams of taking the next step by developing core projects such as Global Education City and Health Care Town and opening its market to foreign investors since being designated the first self-governing province in Korea.
In 2006, the South Korean Government designated the island, Jeju Province, which is only a two-hour flight from five major cities in Asia including Seoul, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Tokyo, as the only special self-governing province in the country. This special designation gives Jeju full autonomous rights and authority in all areas except national defense, diplomacy and administration of justice, and allows Jeju to open itself to the world through a no-visa policy and tax exemptions for Korean and foreign investors. This designation has also allowed it to take on several economic development projects, including healthcare and theme park projects.