SEOUL, KOREA -- The Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs (MLTM) will expand the Intelligent Transportation System (ITS), strengthen the logistics industry and build Social Overhead Capital (SOC) facilities for the Winter Olympic Games in the New Year.
“We will expand the ITS to cover more roads across the country such as the 180-kilometer-long road between Daegu and Ansan and the 21st national road which is 15 kilometers long", said Kwon Do-youp, minister of land, transport and maritime affairs, when asked about major polices related to the construction of advanced roads and transportation infrastructure for the New Year. “We will improve traffic information by building a system that shares various traffic and road information such as detours, accidents and construction among highways and national roads in the first half of 2012.”
The MLTM will expand the ITS and cut down its cost by building a road and ITS package. “We will apply the ITS to 16 sections (a total of 171 kilometers) in 2012 and expand the number to 40 (a total of 640 kilometers) by the end of 2020,” Minister Kwon said.
Minister Kwon knows that Korea needs a stronger logistics industry to be a bigger export powerhouse in the world. Focusing on world-class global logistics companies, the MLTM will expand specialized logistics markets both domestically and internationally and will actively foster specialized logistics companies in Korea expand into overseas markets.
"We will ease regulations on tax breaks for shippers when they use specialized logistics companies in order to maximize the profit base for specialized logistics companies. In addition, we will continue third-party logistics consulting business for shippers", he added.
“In order to help specialized logistics firms make a foray into overseas markets, the MLTM has devised the Regulation on Selecting and Nurturing Global Logistics Companies.”
When a company is designated as a global logistics company, the company will be able to use loans from the Korea Exim Bank with better conditions. The ministry will give financial support to designated companies by compensating for the education of interns dispatched to overseas corporations. The qualified global logistics companies are general logistics companies which could generate more than 10% of their sales in overseas markets and have excellent global business plans.
Preparations for the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in 2018
In an interview with the Korea IT Times, Minister Kwon foretold MLTM's plan to build SOC facilities such as roads, railroads and airports for the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in 2018. A key to the success of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in 2018 is a fast and convenient transportation between airports to the venue but also between stadiums and the athletes' village. Therefore, the MLTM is planning to spare no efforts in contributing to the successful hosting of the world winter sports jubilee in Pyeongchang by mapping out and implementing an effective traffic and transportation plan for the Winter Olympic Games.
“First of all, we will make every effort to implement four guaranteed projects which the IOC asked the Korean government to complete. The four projects include the construction of a double-line electric railroad between Gangneung and Wonju in Gangwon Province,” Minister Kwon said.
“For the railway sector, the ministry will complete the construction of the railway between Wonju and Kangneung at the end of 2017. Then electric trains will begin to run before the start of the Winter Olympic Games.” The supposed railway between Wonju and Kangneung will be 113.7 kilometers long at a cost of KRW 3,491.1 billion.
In the road construction sector, the MLTM will improve and expand National Roads no. 6 between Yeongok and Duneung and no. 59 between Jinbu and Najeon and build an interchange for the Yeongdong Highway. National Road no. 6 will connect Yeongok and Duneung at a cost of KRW 105 billion by mid-2014 while National Road no. 59 will connect Jinbu and Najeonk at a cost of KRW 117.5 billion by 2016. The ministry is planning to complete the construction of the interchange for the Yeongdong Highway by 2017 by investing KRW 31.2 billion.
In addition, the MLTM will move ahead with a plan to build an additional boarding gate at Yangyang Airport in Gangwon Province to provide better air transportation services for athletes and officials to take part in the Winter Olympic Games.
The ministry will build the boarding gate at the left side of the stairs room of the International Flight Terminal in Yangyang Airport with investment of KRW 650 million by 2017. “In the future, we will take the initiative in making the Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games one of the greatest Winter Olympic Games by finishing SOC construction projects in time.”
Outlook for international events in 2012
In 2012, the MLTM will reinforce international cooperation through a wide variety of international events in the land, transportation and maritime sectors. The International Exposition Yeosu Korea 2012 will be held in Yeosu, South Jeolla Province under the theme of “The Living Ocean and Coast” from May 12 to August 12, 2012. Its affiliated events include the second PICES/ICES/IOC Climate Change Symposium and the 2012 World Ocean Forum.
“The Yeosu Expo will provide an opportunity to enhance the international community’s perception of the function and value of the ocean and coast, share knowledge on the proper use of the ocean and coast and recognize the need for cooperation in the marine sector", Minister Kwon said. “This international event will also serve as a venue to learn more about the achievements of and future models for the marine sector and offer a valuable chance to promote state-of-the-art marine science and technology and marine industries".
In Changwon of South Gyeongsang Province, the fourth EAS Congress 2012 will be held from July 9th to the 13th in 2012. “The East Asian Seas (EAS) Congress is a pioneering region-wide platform for capacity building, strategic action and cooperation for the sustainable development of the Seas of East Asia,” he added. Other important events of the MLTM in Korea are the ASEAN-ROK Transport Cooperation Forum in July, the OGC General Assembly in October and the Seoul International Maritime Forum in September.