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“Develop idle ports into ocean service hub at a leap”
Friday, April 14, 2017, 17:15:26 Paul Yoon ckyoon7@paran.com
The government will develop idle ports as new centers of maritime industries in South Korea.

Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries (MOF) announced ‘The First Basic Plan for Maritime Industry Clusters (2017-2021)’ in a move to directly bring up core maritime industries in South Korea by utilizing port facilities left idle as a result of new ports construction.

MOF enacted a special law in May last year for nomination and promotion of maritime industry clusters, seeking for effective ways to use idle port facilities. Under Clause 6 of the law, MOF has established the five year promotion plan ahead to systematically develop the maritime industry clusters. The plan highlights nomination of ports for preferred maritime industry clusters and promotion of core industries in ports to be nominated.

With maritime industry clusters nominated, maritime industry-related enterprises are allowed to use port facilities including piers in production activities such as project research, manufacturing and logistics. The idle port facilities including the piers are essential and best suited to promotion of maritime industry development such as the manufacturing of port stevedoring facilities and leisure ship construction. The use of already established port facilities can significantly reduce financial investment burden instead of construction of new industry complexes.

Under the basic plan, the preferred ports as intended for nomination as maritime clusters are Wooam Terminal at Busan Port and Jungma General Terminal and 1st Phase Container Terminal (Nos. 3 and 4 Piers) at Guangyang Port. Wooam Terminal and Jungma General Terminal currently remain idle and can be nominated as maritime clusters. Container terminals are expected to be nominated in case of being fully idle or partly idle.

Busan Port has been picked as a core industry for sea leisure ship construction and for production of related cutting-edge ship components, and Guwangyang Port has been selected as a test bed for maritime port logistics research and development in view of policy support for port logistics research and development. A total of 43.3 billion won will be invested in Busan Port and Gwanguang Port as targets for nomination in the way that the infrastructures can be built up for business promotion here. Moreover, research devices, office equipment, and exhibition room can be provided to promote convergence with other business sectors including IT along with front-back industries moving into here at the same time.

A MOF official said: “The set-up of the basic plan for maritime industry clusters will not only enable port redevelopment with idle port facilities under massive finances but also other option for industrial use. MOF will establish the basic plan for each cluster development and finalize the official nomination of clusters within the end of this year, providing full support for early stabilization of maritime clusters.”
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