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Woo-Hyun Cho Emphasizes Priority of S.O.C. Investment in Korea's Development

International Symposium on Paraguay-Korea Relations
June 17, 2014
Greater Asunción, Paraguay
Theme: "Towards an Alliance Between Paraguay and South Korea" 
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Woo-Hyun Cho, Former Vice-Minister of the Ministry of Construction and Transportation; The Chief of Incheon International Airport


Hello everyone. To begin, I’ll introduce myself. I was a vice minister of the Ministry of Construction and Transportation of Korea and the chief of Incheon International Airport. I’m much honored to be invited to the first Global Symposium of Korea and Paraguay. Also, I want to thank Horacio Cartes, the president of Paraguay, Hyun Jin Moon, the president of GPF, Gustav Leite, the Minister of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Carlos Gustav Fernandes, the president of Valdovinos Central Bank, Myung Jae Han, the Paraguay Ambassador to Korea, and our honored guests present in this room.

After the Korean wars in 1950, Korea has made fast economic development in an unprecedented pace. I hope this Symposium for seeking cooperation between Korea and Paraguay would help S.O.C development of road, Port, railroad, and airport with our experiences based on.
To make S.O.C development possible, it needs appropriation of construction expense from Global IB bank. Among visitors, there are two former vice-chairman of Woori Bank and Shinhan bank which are leading investment banks in Korea. I would like to briefly introduce them. Seong Nam, Choi was a vice chairman of Woori bank and he is now an advisory of Woori Finance Research Institute. Seong heon, Lee was a vice chairman of Shinhan bank and he is now an executive director of Asia Asset Management. Please give a big hand to our special guests.

The Ministry of Construction and Transportation of Korea has conducted all stages of S.O.C development projects very successfully from project feasibility analysis, basic plans, project financing, and construction to completion of projects.

I hope this seminar to be an opportunity to pass on know-hows acquired from the development process of Korea to Paraguay.

Paraguay, located inland of South America, has one of the world’s biggest hydroelectric power plants that have full power capacity. Also, it has strengths in export and import of all kinds of agro and livestock products based on its extensive lands. However, to use the strengths of Paraguay to its full potential, it is essential to improve competitiveness by upgrading transportation ability and reducing the costs of logistics. In another word, expanding road, railroad, and airport is a very urgent issue. Through expansion, it will not only make all the territory of Paraguay a one-day life zone but also, improve the efficiency of its economy and contribute to industrial development.

From a war-torn country to a developed country and to step on among advanced countries, the foundation of Korea originated from Gyeongbu expressway construction. Such S.O.C investment has been continued until now. Incheon Airport construction, Busan port construction, private financed highways, high-speed railroad called KTX, and construction of Incheon and Pyeongtaek port are classic examples of the investment. As Korea lacks in resources, it has very difficult environments to improve competitiveness in any fields. Nevertheless, it is now globally competitive in the industries of IT, semi-conductor, communications, vehicles, and electronics. Also, it has established its foundation in the export-led industries. S.O.C expansion made this all possible.

Infrastructure development can’t be accomplished by an effort of a country alone. It needs cooperation among nations. Korean government is operating various programs that are crucial to infrastructure development and mutually beneficial to related nations. The programs include setting up master plans of countries in need of infrastructure development and exchanging professionals and public officials to share technologies and policies.

I believe this seminar has been made upon an agreement of the importance of cooperation in infrastructure development among countries. The Ministry of Construction and Transportation of Korea is in charge of the infrastructure development of Korea.

To our honored guests!

With todays’ symposium as a momentum, Korea desires to add new vitality to Paraguay’s economic development by sharing models of the economic development, know-how of the S.O.C development, technologies and experiences of Korea in the field.

Lastly, I expect this event to be a start of economic cooperation and joint projects between Korea and Paraguay. I appreciate all the efforts and dedications of related parties. Thank you.