Asiana exec encourages cooperation with China
Park Sam-koo, chairman of Kumho Asiana Group, called for future-oriented economic cooperation between Korea and China and stressed the need to finalize the Korea-China free trade agreement at a meeting of chief executives from major businesses in the two countries.
“It was a good opportunity for both sides to talk about measures to share profits with each other and prepare agendas that are highly likely to be carried out,” Park said after presiding over the meeting in Beijing on Saturday.
About 26 executives attended the Korea-China CEO Roundtable, cohosted by the Federation of Korean Industries (FKI) and the China International Council for the Promotion of Multinational Corporations.
Korean business moguls including Han Duck-soo, chairman of the Korea International Trade Association; Lee Seung-cheol, vice chairman of the FKI; Kwon Oh-joon, chairman of Posco; Kang Ho-moon, vice chairman of Sam- sung Electronics; Choi Sung-ki, president of Hyundai Motor; Lee Eo-ryong, chairman of Daishin Securities; and Kim Sung-joo, chairman of Sungjoo Group, took part in the meeting.
“Businesses from the two countries will do our best to establish a friendly partnership in various fields ranging from finance to communications to culture,” Park said. “This will be based on an effective free trade agreement between the two countries.”
It is the third time the meeting has been held and the second time Park has presided over it. He has served as the chairman of the Korea-China Friendship Association since 2005 and has met Chinese government officials including current President Xi Jinping, former President Hu Jintao and former Premier Wen Jiabao.
“The chairman is credited with playing a key role in expanding diplomatic channels in the private sector and increasing business and cultural exchanges between the two countries,” a statement from Kumho Asiana Group said. With Black Friday three weeks away, cost-conscious shoppers are looking to take advantage of the United States’ biggest shopping season.
The Friday after Thanksgiving is no longer a holiday just for U.S. consumers as Koreans will also be enjoying the day’s special deals through overseas direct purchasing sites and shipping agents that facilitate purchases from retail juggernauts such as Amazon.
Whenever a new major Black Friday sale is announced by U.S. retailers, the news goes viral on portal websites and the blogosphere. Online forums catering to bargain hunters are flooded with postings on tips about how to get the best deal on Nov. 28.
The most-discussed deal online yesterday was an advertisement from Sears for big discounts on home appliances manufactured by Samsung and LG Electronics.
On Black Friday, Sears will sell Samsung’s 55-inch full HD TV (Samsung 55” 1080p Smart LED HDTV) for $599.9 while the same product in Korea sells for 1.4 million to 1.6 million won ($1,288 to $1,472). The TV’s initial launch price in the U.S. was $1,199.99.
The 60-inch 3-D model will be on sale for $1,300, down from about $1,700.
According to shipping company Malltail, the amount of purchases by Koreans directly from foreign websites over the U.S. shopping period has gradually increased. In 2012, the number of transactions between Black Friday and Cyber Monday was 27,000 but the figure surged to more than 40,000 last year, a 48 percent increase. Malltail expects this year’s transactions to double last year’s.
The total amount spent on overseas shopping last year surpassed 1 trillion