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Republic of Korea 대한민국 大韓民國 Daehanminguk
Motto: 홍익인간/ 弘益人間 Benefit all mankind (Unofficial motto) Anthem: Aegukga (애국가/ 愛國歌) ("The Patriotic Song")
Capital (and largest city)
37°35′N 127°0′E / 37.583°N 127°E / 37.583; 127
Official language(s) Korean Official scripts Hangul Demonym South Korean, Korean Government Presidential republic - President Lee Myung-bak - Prime Minister Kim Hwang-sik Legislature National Assembly Establishment - National Foundation Day October 3, 2333 BCE - Independence declared March 1, 1919
- Provisional Government - Liberation - Constitution - Government proclaimed - Total - Water (%) - 2010 estimate - Density GDP (PPP) - Total - Per capita GDP (nominal) - Total - Per capita Gini (2007) HDI (2010) Currency Time zone - Summer (DST) Date formats Drives on the ISO 3166 code Internet TLD Calling code
April 13, 1919 August 15, 1945 July 17, 1948 August 15, 1948 Area 100,210 km2 (108th) 38,691 sq mi 0.3 Population 48,875,000 (24th) 491/km2 (21st) 1,271/sq mi 2010 estimate $1,457.063 billion (12th) $29,791 (26th) 2010 estimate $986.256 billion (14th) $20,165 (34th) 31.3 0.877 (very high) (12th) South Korean won (₩) (KRW) Korea Standard Time (UTC+9) not observed (UTC+9) yyyy 년 mm 월 dd 일 yyyy/mm/dd (CE) right KR .kr 82
Mobile phone system CDMA, WCDMA, HSDPA and WiBro Domestic power supply 220V/60 Hz, CEE 7/7 sockets
South Korea (
/ˈsaʊθ kəˌriə/), officially the Republic of Korea (ROK, Hangul: 대한민국,
Hanja: 大韓民國, pronounced [tɛːhanminɡuk] ( listen)) and the Sixth Republic of South Korea, ̚ is a country in East Asia, located on the southern portion of the Korean Peninsula. It is neighbored by the People's Republic of China to the west, Japan to the east, and North Korea to the north. Its capital is Seoul, which is also its largest city. South Korea lies in a temperate climate region with a predominantly mountainous terrain. Its territory covers a total area of 99,392 square kilometers and has a population of 50 million. Seoul, capital of South Korea, reaches a population of 10,421,782. Archaeological findings show that the Korean Peninsula was occupied by the Lower Paleolithic period. Korean history begins with the founding of Gojoseon in 2333 BC by the legendary Dan-gun. Following the unification of the Three Kingdoms of Korea under Silla 668 AD, Korea went through the Goryeo Dynasty and Joseon Dynasty as one nation until the end of the Korean Empire in 1910, when Korea was annexed by Japan. After liberation and occupation by Soviet and U.S. forces at the end of World War II, the nation was divided into North and South Korea. The latter was established in 1948 as a democracy, though political turmoil, and periods of
military rule and martial law, were to characterize much of the period until the foundation of the Sixth Republic in 1987. After the invasion of South Korea by forces from the North on 25 June 1950, the resulting war between the two Koreas ended with an Armistice Agreement, but the border between the two nations is the most heavily fortified in the world. After the war, the South Korean economy grew significantly and the country was eventually transformed into its present-day status as a major economy and a full democracy. South Korea is a presidential republic consisting of sixteen administrative divisions and is a developed country with a very high standard of living. It is Asia's fourth largest economy and the world's 14th (nominal) or 12th (purchasing power parity) largest economy. The economy is export-driven, with production focusing on electronics, automobiles, ships, machinery, petrochemicals and robotics. South Korea is a member of the United Nations, WTO, OECD and G-20 major economies. It is also a founding member of APEC and the East Asia Summit.
1.1 Before the division 1.2 After the division
• • •
2 Government 3 Administrative divisions 4 Foreign relations
○ ○ ○ ○ ○
4.1 China 4.2 European Union 4.3 Japan 4.4 North Korea 4.5 United States
5 Military 6 Geography, climate and environment
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6.1 Geography 6.2 Climate 6.3 Environment 7.1 Transportation and energy 8.1 Aerospace research 8.2 Robotics
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8 Science and technology
according to Korean foundation mythology.4 Contemporary music. Gojoseon .1 Art 12.3 Biotechnology 9 Education 10 Demographics ○ ○ 10. film and television 12.2 Bibliography • 16 External links History Before the division Main article: History of Korea Jikji. Bibliothèque Nationale de Paris. Korean history begins with the founding of Jo-seon (often known as "Gojoseon" to prevent confusion with another dynasty founded in the 14th century.5 Technology culture • • • 13 Sports 14 See also 15 References ○ ○ 15.3 Cuisine 12.means 'old' or 'earlier') in 2333 BC by Dangun.○ • • 8. the first known book printed with movable metal type in 1377.1 Footnotes 15.1 Cities of South Korea 10.2 Architecture 12.2 Religion • • 11 Public health and safety 12 Culture ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ 12. the prefix Go.
but was eventually repelled by the Righteous army and assistance from Ming Dynasty China. Goryeo was a highly cultural state and created the Jikji in 1377. the latter years of the Joseon Dynasty were marked by a dependence on China for external affairs and isolation from the outside world. After the Mongolian Empire collapsed. Korea's . Balhae controlled most of Manchuria and parts of Russian Far East. Gojoseon disintegrated. It fell to the Khitan in 926. severe political strife followed and the Goryeo Dynasty was replaced by the Joseon Dynasty in 1388 following a rebellion by General Yi Seong-gye. the Japanese invaded Korea. and moved the capital to Seoul. Joseon experienced a nearly 200-year period of peace. This war also saw the rise of Admiral Yi Sun-sin and his renowned "turtle ship".expanded until it controlled northern Korean Peninsula and some parts of Manchuria. Dongye. Between 1592 and 1598. was formed as a successor state to Goguryeo. The unification of the Three Kingdoms by Silla in 676 led to the North South States Period. The peninsula was united by Emperor Taejo of Goryeo in 936. Buyeo. In Unified Silla. Of the various states. in which much of the Korean Peninsula was controlled by Unified Silla. Unified Silla weakened under internal strife. Joseon suffered from invasions by the Manchu who eventually conquered all of China. In the early centuries of the Common Era. During its height. In the 1620s and 1630s. Like Silla. while Balhae succeeded the northern parts of Goguryeo. After many conflicts with the Chinese Han Dynasty. and surrendered to Goryeo in 935. The first 200 years of the Joseon Dynasty were marked by relative peace and saw the creation of Hangul by King Sejong the Great in the 14th century and the rise in influence of Confucianism in the country. Gyeongbok Palace is the largest of the Five Grand Palaces built during the Joseon Dynasty. After nearly 30 years of war. Toyotomi Hideyoshi led the forces and tried to invade the Asian continent through Korea. Okjeo. King Taejo declared the new name of Korea as "Joseon" in reference to Gojoseon. Relationships between Korea and China remained relatively peaceful during this time. Goryeo continued to rule Korea. poetry and art was encouraged. King Yeongjo and King Jeongjo particularly led a new renaissance of the Joseon Dynasty. Balhae. using the world's oldest movable metal type printing press. leading to the Proto–Three Kingdoms of Korea period. However. Baekje. and Silla grew to control the peninsula as Three Kingdoms of Korea. The Mongol invasions in the 13th century greatly weakened Goryeo. However. though as a tributary ally to the Mongols. Goguryeo. During the 19th century. and the Samhan confederacy occupied the peninsula and southern Manchuria. Silla's neighbor to the north. After another series of wars against Manchuria. and Buddhist culture thrived.
an exiled and right-wing Korean political leader. In the North. escalating Cold War antagonism between the Soviet Union and the United States eventually led to the establishment of separate governments. was installed as president.isolationist policy earned it the name the "Hermit Kingdom". After the SinoJapanese War[disambiguation needed] and the Russo-Japanese War. leading to Korea's division into two political entities in 1948: North Korea and South Korea. the war eventually reached a stalemate. respectively. The Joseon Dynasty tried to protect itself against Western imperialism. Syngman Rhee. but was eventually forced to open trade. After the division Main article: History of South Korea Despite the initial plan of a unified Korea in the 1943 Cairo Declaration. At the end of World War II. a former anti-Japanese guerrilla and communist activist. At least 2. Korea was occupied by Japan (1910– 1945). After huge advances on both sides. split the peninsula along the demilitarized zone near the original demarcation line. each with its own ideology. with the later participation of millions of Chinese troops. the Soviet Union had boycotted the United Nations (UN). the Japanese surrendered to Soviet and U. The Soviet Union and China backed North Korea. At the time. sparking the Korean War. No peace treaty was ever signed. View of Seoul's Gangnam district today . resulting in the two countries remaining technically at war. On 25 June 1950. and massive losses among Korean civilians in both the north and the south. and in the South. forces who occupied the northern and southern halves of Korea.5 million people died during the Korean War. This allowed the UN to intervene in a civil war when it became apparent that the superior North Korean forces would unify the entire country. The 1953 armistice.S. North Korea invaded South Korea. the Cold War's first major conflict. Kim Il-sung gained power through Soviet support. never signed by South Korea. thus forfeiting their veto rights.
the capital of North Korea. however South Korean and Japanese relations later soured due to conflicting claims of sovereignty over the Liancourt Rocks (referred to as Dokdo in Korea. and for peace and reconciliation with North Korea in particular. Government Main article: Government of South Korea . a North– South summit took place in Pyongyang. On May 17. and Takeshima in Japan). Eventually. Chun and his government held Korea under a despotic rule until 1987. when a Seoul National University student was tortured to death. in particular in the city of Gwangju. Seoul hosted the 1988 Summer Olympics. After the Coup d'état. and its leader. Kim received the Nobel Peace Prize "for his work for democracy and human rights in South Korea and in East Asia in general.16 coup d'état") against the weak and ineffectual government the next year. albeit at a slower pace. Kim Dae-Jung and Kim Young-Sam. Park took over as president until his assassination in 1979. Park was heavily criticised as a ruthless military dictator. Chun assumed the presidency by the event of May 17. broken by General Park Chung-hee's military coup (the "5. It became a member of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in 1996. Chun Doohwan forced the Cabinet to expand martial law to the whole nation. the Catholic Priests Association for Justice revealed the incident. The years after Park's assassination were marked again by political turmoil. igniting huge demonstrations around the country. as part of president Kim Dae-Jung's "Sunshine Policy" of engagement. as the previously repressed opposition leaders all campaigned to run for president in the sudden political void. On 10 June. In 1979 there was Coup d'état of December Twelfth by General Chun Doo-hwan. Roh went on to win the election by a narrow margin against the two main opposition leaders. a student uprising (the "4. Chun subsequently created the National Defense Emergency Policy Committee and took the presidency according to his political plan. In 1988. Chun Doo-hwan planned to rise to power with several measures. triggering nationwide protests demanding democracy. In June 2000.19 Revolution") led to the resignation of the autocratic President Syngman Rhee. in what became known as the Liancourt Rocks dispute. Roh Tae-woo announced the June 29th Declaration. which had previously not applied to Jeju-do. although the Korean economy developed significantly during his tenure.Sea of supporters in Seoul during the 2002 FIFA World Cup In 1960. banned political activities and further curtailed the press. where Chun sent special forces to violently suppress the Gwangju Democratization Movement. It was adversely affected by the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis. Later that year." In 2002. A period of political instability followed. However. overseeing rapid export-led economic growth as well as severe political repression. the country was able to recover and continue its economic growth. South Korea and Japan jointly co-hosted the 2002 FIFA World Cup. the Democratic Justice Party. which included the direct election of the president. The expanded martial law closed universities. Chun's party.
 The first direct election was also held in 1948. Administrative divisions Main article: Administrative divisions of South Korea See also Special cities of Korea and Provinces of Korea . Local governments are semi-autonomous. and contain executive and legislative bodies of their own. The South Korean government's structure is determined by the Constitution of the Republic of Korea. and legislative. the country has always had a presidential system with an independent chief executive. it has since developed into a successful liberal democracy. South Korea is a constitutional democracy. Today.The National Assembly of South Korea Like many democracies. This document has been revised several times since its first promulgation in 1948 at independence. Although South Korea experienced a series of military dictatorships since the 1960s up until the 1980s. the CIA World Factbook describes South Korea's democracy as a "fully functioning modern democracy". although various ministries in the executive branch also carry out local functions. However. South Korea's government is divided into three branches: executive. The executive and legislative branches operate primarily at the national level. The judicial branch operates at both the national and local levels. judicial. it has retained many broad characteristics and with the exception of the short-lived Second Republic of South Korea.
635.628.442.Principal divisions of South Korea The major administrative divisions in South Korea are provinces.958 울산광역시 市 Provinces (Do)a 10.512.604 대구광역시 市 仁川廣域 2. metropolitan cities (selfgoverning cities that are not part of any province).857 대전광역시 市 光州廣域 1.592.087. Namea hangul Special city (Teukbyeolsi)a 1 Seoul (Special City) (首爾)特別 10.389 부산광역시 市 大邱廣域 2.456.399 경기도 京畿道 1.782 市 Metropolitan cities (Gwangyeoksi)a 釜山廣域 3.421.308 광주광역시 市 蔚山廣域 1.000 인천광역시 市 大田廣域 1.415. and one special city.000 강원도 江原道 서울특별시 hanja population 2 Busan 3 Daegu 4 Incheon 6 Daejeon 5 Gwangju 7 Ulsan 8 Gyeonggi-do 9 Gangwon-do .
the People's Republic of China embraced Maoism while South Korea sought close relations with the United States. In 2010. Korean independence fighters worked with Chinese soldiers during the Japanese occupation.890. a body of observers.775.462. The Republic of Korea broke off official relations with the Republic of China upon gaining official relations with the People's Republic of China. The PRC assisted North Korea with manpower and supplies during the Korean War. and in its aftermath the diplomatic relationship between South Korea and the PRC almost completely ceased. South Korea and the European Union concluded a free trade agreement (FTA) to reduce trade barriers. Foreign relations Main article: Foreign relations of South Korea South Korea maintains diplomatic relations with more than 188 countries.000 自治道 Revised Romanisation. Before the formation of South Korea.621 Chungcheong) Chungcheongnam-do (Southern 충청남도 忠淸南道 1. In November 2009 South Korea joined the OECD Development Assistance Committee. when it became a member state at the same time as North Korea. The two countries sought to improve bilateral relations and lifted the forty-year old trade embargo. South Korea is also negotiating a Free Trade Agreement with Canada.840. 1992. after World War II. European Union .994. South Korean Foreign Minister Ban Ki-moon assumed the post of UN Secretary-General.410 Chungcheong) Jeollabuk-do (Northern Jeolla) 전라북도 全羅北道 1. Relations thawed gradually and South Korea and the PRC re-established formal diplomatic relations on August 24. and South Korean–Chinese relations have improved steadily since 1992. South Korea hosted the G-20 Summit in Seoul in November 2010.929 Gyeongsang) Special self-governing province (Teukbyeoljachi-do)a 濟州特別 Jeju-teukbyeoljachido (Jeju-do) 제주특별자치도 560. It has also developed links with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations as both a member of ASEAN Plus three. On January 1.287 Gyeongsangbuk-do (Northern 2.10 11 12 13 14 15 16 a Chungcheongbuk-do (Northern 충청북도 忠淸 北道 1. China Main articles: People's Republic of China-South Korea relations and Republic of China-South Korea relations Historically. marking the first time a former aid recipient country joined the group as a donor member.669 Jeollanam-do (Southern Jeolla) 전라남도 全羅南道 1. The country has also been a member of the United Nations since 1991. Korea has had close relations with China. and another with New Zealand.890 경상북도 慶尙 北道 Gyeongsang) Gyeongsangnam-do (Southern 경상남도 慶尙南道 2. 2007. However.970. and the East Asia Summit (EAS).
the re-writing of Japanese textbooks related to Japanese acts during World War II. The EU has been the single largest foreign investor in South Korea since 1962. the visits by Japanese politicians to the Yasukuni Shrine honoring Japanese soldiers killed at war (including some class A war criminals). the EU is seeking to improve this situation. EU trade with South Korea exceeded €65 billion in 2008 and has enjoyed an annual average growth rate of 7.  Korean women were forced to the war front to serve the Imperial Japanese Army as sexual slaves. During World War II. having negotiated a free trade agreement for many years since South Korea was designated as a priority FTA partner in 2006.000 Koreans were forced to serve in the Imperial Japanese Army. The free trade agreement has been approved in September 2010. 2011. In response to then-Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's repeated visits to the Yasukuni Shrine.5% between 2004 and 2008. South Korea and Japan signed the Treaty on Basic Relations between Japan and the Republic of Korea in 1965 to establish diplomatic ties. The compromise made by Italy was that free trade agreement would take provisional effect on July 1. and the territorial disputes over Dokdo (Unofficial name: Liancourt Rocks) continue to trouble Korean-Japanese relations. former President Roh Moo-hyun suspended all summit talks between South Korea and Japan. Although Dokdo is claimed by both Korea and Japan. Japan Main article: Japan-Korea relations Dokdo has become an issue known as the Liancourt Rocks dispute Although there were no formal diplomatic ties between South Korea and Japan after the end of World War II. Nevertheless. more than 100.The European Union (EU) and South Korea are important trading partners. South Korea is the EU's eighth largest trade partner. following Italy's conditional withdrawal of its veto of the free trade agreement. There is heavy anti-Japanese sentiment in South Korea due to a number of unsettled Japanese-Korean disputes. Both in its regular bilateral contacts with South Korea and through its FTA with Korea. EU companies have significant problems accessing and operating in the South Korean market due to stringent standards and testing requirements for products and services often creating barriers to trade. which has its Korean Coast Guard stationed there. and the EU has become South Korea's second largest export destination. many of which stem from the period of Japanese occupation after the Japanese annexation of Korea. North Korea . called comfort women. the islets are administered by South Korea. and accounted for almost 45% of all FDI inflows into Korea in 2006. Longstanding issues such as Japanese war crimes against Korean civilians.
except for the joint Kaesong Industrial Project. North Korea had been reported to have deployed missiles. which the North denies. Despite the Sunshine Policy and efforts at reconciliation. North Korea and South Korea signed an agreement to pursue peace. the progress was complicated by North Korean missile tests in 1993. and to expel all South Koreans from a joint industrial zone in Kaesong. relationships between North and South Korea were very tense. As of early 2009[update]. North Korean media declared that the Armistice is no longer valid due to the South Korean government's pledge to "definitely join" the Proliferation Security Initiative. North and South Korea are still technically at war (having never signed a peace treaty after the Korean War) and share the world's most heavily fortified border. 2009. 2006 and 2009. but backtracked on its threats and decided to continue its ties with South Korea. killing four South Koreans • • • • • • United States . On May 27. renewal of train services. 2007.Both North and South Korea continue to officially claim sovereignty over the entire peninsula and any outlying islands. killing 46 sailors 20 May: Panel says a North Korean torpedo sank the ship. But despite the continuing ties. On October 4. highway and air travel. and a joint Olympic cheering squad. high-level talks. President Lee Myung-bak declared in May 2010 that Seoul would cut all trade with North Korea as part of measures primarily aimed at striking back at North Korea diplomatically and financially. and humanitarian aid. Timeline for 2010 • 26 March: South Korean warship Cheonan sinks. US places more sanctions on Pyongyang 29 September: North holds rare party congress seen as part of father-to-son succession move 29 October: Troops from North and South Korea exchange fire across the land border 12 November: North Korea shows US scientist new . North Korea initially threatened to sever all ties. ended its former agreements with South Korea.undeclared . to completely abrogate the previous pact of non-aggression. Roh Moo-Hyun and North Korean leader Kim Jong-il signed an eight-point agreement on issues of permanent peace. is affirmed by the South Korean government to have been caused by a North Korean torpedo.uranium enrichment facility 23 November: North shells island of Yeonpyeong. With longstanding animosity following the Korean War from 1950 to 1953. the sinking of the South Korean warship Cheonan in March 2010. Kaesong industrial zone has seen a large decrease in investment and manpower as a result of this military conflict. 1998. Pyongyang denies involvement July–September: South Korea and US hold military exercises. economic cooperation. To further complicate and intensify strains between the two nations. and threatened South Korea and the United States not to interfere with a satellite launch it had planned.
agreed to a "Mutual Defense Treaty". In 2007. Seventh Air Force. South Korea and the U. South Korea has the world's sixth largest number of active troops.S. South Korea obliged the mutual defense treaty. There had also been strong anti-American sentiment during certain periods. although they have at times disagreed with regard to policies towards North Korea. Military Main article: Republic of Korea Armed Forces A long history of invasions by neighbors and the unresolved tension with North Korea have prompted South Korea to allocate 2. Naval Forces Korea are stationed in South Korea. In 1967.S. and reserve forces. and with regard to some of South Korea's industrial activities that involve usage of rocket or nuclear technology. and the Marine Corps (ROKMC). forces were sent to defend South Korea against invasion by North Korea and later China. pending further approval by the legislative bodies of the two countries.7 million regular personnel among a total national population of 50 million people. the South Korean government was established. a King Sejong the Great -class guided-missile destroyer The South Korean military consists of the Army (ROKA). and military ties. has the second highest number of soldiers per capita in the world. ROKN Sejong the Great (DDG 991).United States President Barack Obama and Lee walking after a meeting at the Blue House in Seoul in November 2010. The U. but its formal implementation has been repeatedly delayed. the world's second-largest number of reserve troops and the eleventh largest defense budget. Upon the onset of the Korean War. Consequently. the Navy (ROKN). after the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. Many of these forces are concentrated near the Korean Demilitarized Zone. Following the Armistice. under which an attack on either party in the Pacific area would summon a response from both. After three years of military administration by the United States. diplomatic. Koreans of . while maintaining compulsory conscription for men.6% of its GDP and 15% of all government spending to its military (Government share of GDP: 14.967%). with a regular military force numbering 3. Previously. the Air Force (ROKAF). The Republic of Korea. All South Korean males are constitutionally required to serve in the military. a free trade agreement known as the Republic of Korea-United States Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) was reportedly signed between South Korea and the United States.S. U. typically for a period of two years. and U.S. Eighth Army. The United States engaged in the decolonization of Korea (mainly in the South. with the Soviet Union engaged in North Korea) from Japan after World War II. which has largely moderated in the modern day. by sending a large combat troop contingent to support the United States in the Vietnam War. The two nations have strong economic.
are assembled to provide additional fire.517 troops to fight alongside American. The South Korean air force operates 840 aircrafts. under Project Peace Eye for centralized intelligence gathering and analysis on a modern battlefield. with a peak strength of 50. forming an integral part of South Korea's indigenous missile defense umbrella against the North Korean military's missile threat. .300 troops of the Zaytun Division to help re-building in northern Iraq. The South Korean navy has made its first major transformation into a blue-water navy through the formation of the Strategic Mobile Fleet. South Korea sent 3. The South Korean army has 2. South Korea was spending ₩1. including several types of advanced fighters like F-15K.6 trillion budget for its own military. the commissioning of four Boeing 737 AEW&C aircraft. which form the backbone of the South Korean army's mechanized armor and infantry forces. Dokdo class amphibious assault ship. and logistics support. which is equipped with the latest baseline of Aegis fleet-defense system that allows the ships to track and destroy multiple cruise missiles and ballistic missiles simultaneously.mixed race were exempt from military duty if they "look distinctively biracial".000. In 2010. A sizable arsenal of many artillery systems. AIP-driven Type 214 submarines. heavily modified KF-16C/D. which includes a battle group of Chungmugong Yi Sun-sin class destroyers.68 trillion in a cost-sharing agreement with the US to provide budgetary support to the US forces in Korea.000 artillery systems deployed in various state of fortification and mobility. In an attempt to gain strength in terms of not just numbers but also modernity. Filipino. but such policy is potentially up for abolition pending further review by the Ministry of Defence. reconnaissance.700 self-propelled K55 and K9 Thunder howitzers. 1000 Korean males are selected every year to serve two years in the KATUSA Program to further augment the USFK. South Korea has sent its troops overseas to assist American forces. It has participated in most major conflicts that the United States has been involved in the past 50 years. which operates more than 13. including the K1A1 and K2 Black Panther. supported by well-maintained fleets of older fighters such as F-4E and KF-5E/F that still effectively serve the air force alongside the more modern aircraft. In 2004. South Korea dispatched 325. will enhance the fighters' and other support aircraft's ability to perform their missions with awareness and precision. and the indigenous F/A-50. including 1.500 tanks in operation. ROKAF F-15K strike fighters From time to time. South Korea's smaller but more advanced artillery force and wide range of airborne reconnaissance platforms are pivotal in the counterbattery suppression of North Korea's over-sized artillery force. and 680 helicopters and UAVs of numerous types. making it world's ninth largest air force. New Zealand and South Vietnamese soldiers in the Vietnam War. Australian. and King Sejong the Great class destroyers. on top the ₩29. In addition to male conscription in South Korea's sovereign military.
000 troops in the Middle East region to support the War on Terrorism. provisionally described as Korea Command (KORCOM). the U. and Daegu. Secretary of Defense and ROK Minister of National Defense determined that South Korea will assume wartime operational control of its forces on April 17. Yongsan. The American troops. most of them serving one year of unaccompanied tours. U. including the US forces and the entire South Korean military – if a sudden escalation of war between North and South Korea were to occur the United States would assume control of the South Korean armed forces in all military and paramilitary moves.800 were deployed since 2007 to reinforce UN peacekeeping forces in Lebanon.S. 2012. A still functioning UN Command is technically the top of the chain of command of all forces in South Korea. South Korea had so far deployed 24. Sungbuk. Military personnel stationed in Korea. In early 2007. climate and environment Main articles: Geography of South Korea and National parks of South Korea Geography Topography of South Korea .500 U. A further 1. in September 2006. Beginning in 2001.S. the Presidents of the United States and the Republic of Korea agreed that South Korea should assume the lead for its own defense. There are approximately 28. Forces Korea will transform into a new joint-warfighting command. Geography. However. The United States have stationed a substantial contingent of troops in South Korea since the Korean War to defend South Korea in case of East Asian military crises.S. which primarily are assigned to the Eighth United States Army are stationed in installations at Osan. Dongducheon.and was the third largest contributor in the coalition forces after only the US and Britain.
Boseong tea field Bukhansan Byeonsan.bando Byeonsan-bando Chiaksan Dadohaehaesang Dadohaehaesang Deogyusan Deogyusan Gayasan Gayasan Gyeongju Gyeryongsan Hallasan .
950 meters (6. This mountainous peninsula is flanked by the Yellow Sea to the west. make up only 30% of the total land area. South Korea's terrain is mostly mountainous.Hallyeohaes ang Hallyeohaesang Jirisan Jirisan Juwangsan Naejangsan Odaesan Seoraksan Sobaeksan Songnisan Songnisan Taeanh aean Taeanhaean Wolchulsan Wolchulsan Woraksan v · d · eNational parks of South Korea (twenty) Land-based parks are in red and marine parks are in blue.845 square kilometres (712 sq mi). with an area of 1. Lowlands. an extinct volcano. located primarily in the west and southeast. Jeju-do is located about 100 kilometers (about 60 mi) off the southern coast of South Korea. and longitudes 124° and 130°E. reaches 1. while Marado and Socotra Rock are the southernmost islands of South Korea. It is the country's largest island.100 km) from the Asian mainland. which extends some 680 miles (1. most of which is not arable. South Korea can be divided into four general regions: an eastern region of high mountain ranges and narrow coastal plains. lie off the western and southern coasts of South Korea. The most eastern islands of South Korea include Ulleungdo and Liancourt Rocks (Dokdo).622. and a southeastern region dominated by the broad basin of the Nakdong River. About three thousand islands. a western region of broad coastal plains. South Korea occupies the southern portion of the Korean Peninsula. Its southern tip lies on the Korea Strait and the East China Sea. and Sea of Japan (East Sea) to the east. Jeju is also the site of South Korea's highest point: Hallasan.00 km2). a southwestern region of mountains and valleys. and rolling hills.57 square miles (100.398 ft) above sea level. The country. mostly small and uninhabited. river basins.032. lies between latitudes 33° and 39°N. including all its islands. . Its total area is 38.
The average annual precipitation varies from 1. autumn from mid-September to early-November. with temperatures exceeding 30 °C in most parts of the country. which begins end of June through the end of July. Spring usually lasts from late-March to early.370 millimeters (54 inches) in Seoul to 1. and the average August temperature range is 22 °C to 30 °C (71 °F to 86 °F). Climate Main article: Climate of South Korea South Korea tends to have a humid continental climate and a humid subtropical climate.2 13 14 5.9 F 0. There are occasional typhoons that bring high winds and floods.South Korea has 20 national parks and popular nature places like the Boseong Tea Fields. temperatures in °F Precipitation totals in inches Rainfall is concentrated in the summer months of June through September. The southern coast is subject to late summer typhoons that bring strong winds and heavy rains. Winters can be extremely cold with the minimum temperature dropping below −20 °C in the inland region of the country: in Seoul. the average January temperature range is −7 °C to 1 °C (19 °F to 33 °F). and the first national park of Jirisan. Suncheon Bay Ecological Park. Environment Main article: Environment of South Korea . summer. summer from mid-May to early-September. spring.9 N 2.8 3 4 5. Summer can be uncomfortably hot and humid.470 millimeters (58 inches) in Busan.4 1.9 [show]Imperial conversion M A M J J A S O 1. and min. and is affected by the East Asian monsoon. autumn and winter.1 D 1 35 21 39 25 50 34 64 45 73 55 80 64 84 71 85 72 78 62 67 50 53 37 40 26 Average max. Seoul J 22 Climate chart (explanation) F M A M J J A S O N D 24 46 77 102 133 328 348 138 49 53 25 2 4 −6 −4 10 18 1 7 23 13 27 18 29 22 30 22 26 20 12 4 17 10 3 −3 Average max. South Korea has four distinct seasons. and min. with precipitation heavier in summer during a short rainy season called jangma (장마).May. temperatures in °C Precipitation totals in mm Source:  J 0. and winter from mid-November to mid-March. Winter temperatures are higher along the southern coast and considerably lower in the mountainous interior.
little effort was made to preserve the environment. South Korea had one of the world's fastest growing economies from the early 1960s to the late 1990s. utilizing nearly two percent of the national GDP. and Whaling. Economy Main article: Economy of South Korea South Korea has a market economy which ranks 14th in the world by nominal GDP and 12th by purchasing power parity (PPP). Nuclear Test Ban. there have been recent efforts to balance these problems. sulfur oxides. Ozone Layer Protection. was restored after being paved over for a motorway. with acid rain. Unchecked industrialization and urban development have resulted in deforestation and the ongoing destruction of wetlands such as the Songdo Tidal Flat. Hazardous Wastes. with Mexico and Switzerland). The green-based economic strategy is a comprehensive overhaul of South Korea's economy. It is acknowledged that many of these difficulties are a result of South Korea's proximity to China. Ship Pollution. During the first 20 years of South Korea's growth surge. Tropical Timber 83. including a government run $84 billion five-year green growth project that aims to boost energy efficiency and green technology. identifying it as one of the G-20 major economies. Antarctic Treaty. Tropical Timber 94. a stream running through downtown Seoul. One major challenge is air quality. Seoul's tap water recently became safe to drink. Biodiversity Treaty. Kyoto Protocol (forming the Environmental Integrity Group (EIG). Desertification. Endangered Species. Another multibillion dollar project was the restoration of Cheonggyecheon. Marine Dumping. and South Korea is still one of the fastest growing developed countries in the . The greening initiative includes such efforts as a nation wide bike network. The country – already the world's most wired – plans to build a nationwide next-generation network which will be 10 times faster than broadband facilities in order to reduce energy usage. backing daylight savings and extensive usage of environmentally friendly technologies such as LEDs in electronics and lighting. South Korea is a member of the Antarctic-Environmental Protocol. Law of the Sea.Cheonggyecheon. Efforts have also been made with afforestation projects. which is a major air polluter. However. regarding UNFCCC. a stream running through downtown Seoul that had earlier been paved over by a motorway. and is the only developed country so far to have been included in the group of Next Eleven countries. with city officials branding it "Arisu" in a bid to convince the public. It is a highincome developed country and is a member of OECD. South Korea is one of the Asian Tigers. Wetlands. lowering oil dependent vehicles. solar and wind energy. and annual yellow dust storms being particular problems. Environmental Modification.
highways. was completed in 2001. bus routes. or 4% of Korea's 2010 GDP. in economic effects. renowned financial organizations.1% in 2010.000 jobs in Korea. Korea Expressway Corporation operates the toll highways and service amenities en route. Korail provides frequent train service to all major South Korean cities. South Korea was the sixth largest exporter and tenth largest importer in the world. 2010 to November 12. By 2007. Despite the South Korean economy's high growth potential and apparent structural stability. Gyeongui and Donghae Bukbu Line. Incheon. along with Hong Kong. Major cities including Seoul. and in 2010. Express bus terminals are available in most cities. the other three members of Asian Tigers. such as the International Monetary Fund. It may also help improve the country's sovereign credit rating. ferry services. The Korean high-speed rail system. the airport was serving 30 million passengers a year. Daejeon and Gwangju have subway systems. Other international . also compliment the resilience of the South Korean economy against various economic crises. South Korea has a market-oriented economy with technologically advanced transportation network consisting of high-speed railways. Two rail lines.3% in 2008 and 0. a sharp recovery from economic growth rates of 2. to North Korea are now being reconnected. provides high-speed service along Gyeongbu and Honam Line.2% in 2009 when the global financial crisis hit. However. Singapore. and air routes that criss-cross the country. Construction of South Korea's largest airport. Daegu.  South Koreans refer to this growth as the Miracle on the Han River. South Korea was one of the few developed countries that were able to avoid a recession during the global financial crisis. which has an adverse effect on the financial markets of the South Korean economy. The unemployment rate in South Korea also remained low in 2009 at 3. The two-day summit is expected to boost Korea's economy by 31 trillion won. The South Korean economy is heavily dependent on international trade.2000s. Incheon International Airport. and high fiscal reserves that can quickly be mobilized to address any expected financial emergencies. 2010. Busan. citing low state debt. and create over 160. and its economic growth rate will reach 6. South Korea suffers perpetual damage to its credit rating in the stock market due to the belligerence of North Korea in times of deep military crises. from November 11. South Korea hosted the fifth G20 summit in its capital city Seoul. KTX. and Taiwan.6% Transportation and energy Main articles: Transport in South Korea and Nuclear power in South Korea The KTX-II high-speed train can travel at 350 km/h (220 mph).
 Nuclear power in South Korea supplies 45% of electricity production and research is very active with investigation into a variety of advanced reactors. provide domestic service with lower fares. including 12. having concluded agreements with the UAE to build and maintain four advanced nuclear reactors.490. established in 1988. competitors of South Korea in the international nuclear market. South Korea is the world's fifth largest nuclear power producer and the second-largest in Asia as of 2010. also serves domestic and international traffic. providing a noticeable impediment to South Korea's indigenous nuclear industrial undertaking . founded in 1962. South Korea is also preparing to bid on construction of a light-water nuclear reactor for Argentina. and with Argentina for construction and repair of heavy-water nuclear reactors. South Korea and Turkey are in negotiations regarding construction of two nuclear reactors. South Korean airlines serve 297 international routes. and a large number of heliports. Asiana Airlines. including a small modular reactor. Incheon International Airport is the largest airport in South Korea. Smaller airliners.000 international passengers in 2008.airports include Gimpo. Combined.000 passengers. Korean Air. and France.640. Fuel production and waste handling technologies have also been developed locally. It is also a member of the ITER project. with Jordan for a research nuclear reactor. Germany. As of 2010. served 21. such as Jeju Air. unlike most major nuclear powers such as Japan. a liquid-metal fast/transmutation reactor and a high-temperature hydrogen generation design. South Korea is not allowed to enrich uranium or develop traditional uranium enrichment technology on its own due to US political pressure. A second carrier. South Korea is an emerging exporter of nuclear reactors. There are also seven domestic airports. Banpo Bridge connects the southern and northern parts of Seoul that are separated by the Han River. Busan and Jeju.
combined with a solidfueled second stage built by South Korea. Arirang-1 was lost in space in 2008. The US has recently been wary of South Korea's burgeoning nuclear program which South Korea insists will only be for civilian use. South Korea has sought the assistance of foreign countries such as Russia through MTCR commitments to supplement its restricted domestic rocket technology. While South Korea is successful in exporting its electricity-generating nuclear technology and nuclear reactors. Naro Space Center. the first stage of the Russian Angara rocket. after nine years in service. In June 2009. In April 2008. The second attempt in June 2010 was also unsuccessful. Yi So-yeon became the first Korean to fly in space. The government plans to investigate the problems and develop Naro-2 by 2018. notably Arirang-1 in 1999. all using foreign rockets and overseas launch pads. South Korea has sought unique technologies such as pyroprocessing technology to circumvent these obstacles and seek a more advantageous competition. preventing Korea from further expanding its export niche. The two failed KSLV-I launch vehicles were based on the Universal Rocket Module. Jeollanam-do. was completed at Goheung. aboard the Russian Soyuz TMA-12. and Arirang-2 in 2006 as part of its space partnership with Russia. The launch of Naro-1 in August 2009 resulted in a failure. it cannot capitalize on the market for nuclear enrichment facilities and refineries. Robotics . Science and technology Main article: Science and technology in Korea Aerospace research Main article: Korea Aerospace Research Institute South Korea has sent up 10 satellites from 1992.that has sparked occasional diplomatic rows between the two allies. South Korea's efforts to build an indigenous space launch vehicle is marred due to persistent political pressure of the United States. the first spaceport of South Korea. which Korea many times insisted did not violate the research and development guidelines stipulated by US-Korea agreements on restriction of South Korean rocket technology research and development. who had for many decades hindered South Korea's indigenous rocket and missile development programs in fear of their possible connection to clandestine military ballistic missile programs.
Gynecoid EveR3 in a traditional hanbok Albert HUBO. Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) developed the world's second walking humanoid robot. with the robots being deployed to most preschools and kindergartens by 2013. A team in the Korea Institute of Industrial Technology developed the first Korean android. developed by KAIST. Robotics are also incorporated in the entertainment sector as well. Robotics has been included in the list of main national R&D projects in Korea since 2003. EveR-1 has been succeeded by more complex models with improved movement and vision. the government announced plans to build robot-themed parks in Incheon and Masan with a mix of public and private funding. can make expressive gestures with its five separate fingers. EveR-1 in May 2006. the . HUBO. In 2005. Next models are scheduled to be completed by 2010. In 2009. Plans of creating English-teaching robot assistants to compensate the shortage of teachers were announced in February 2010.
the country has developed the first Digital Textbooks in the world.  The capital city of Seoul is also the country's largest city and chief industrial center. A centralised administration in South Korea oversees the process for the education of children from kindergarten to the third and final year of high school. the Korean government has actively invested in the development of a domestic biotechnology industry. South Korea's education system is technologically advanced and it is the world's first country to bring high-speed fibre-optic broadband internet access to every primary and secondary school nation-wide. Using this infrastructure. Snuppy. Science and Technology estimate. Education Main article: Education in South Korea Education in South Korea is regarded as being crucial to one's success. and girls wear skirts and white shirts. including production of hepatitis vaccines and antibiotics. According to the 2005 census. research and development in genetics and cloning has received increasing attention. In the 2006 results of the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment.8 million inhabitants. and the number of foreign students will reach 100. and the sector is projected to grow to $6. the second of which begins in late August and ends in mid-February.000. Recently. 1980s and 1990s. Boys' uniforms usually consists of trousers and white shirts. Other major cities . The Seoul National Capital Area has 24. modeled on western-style uniforms. third in mathematics and seventh in science. Most South Koreans live in urban areas. the first of which begins in the beginning of March and ends in mid-July. South Korea came first in problem solving.Korean Robot Game Festival has been held every year since 2004 to promote science and robot technology. which at 487 per square kilometer is more than 10 times the global average. The medical sector accounts for a large part of the production. which will be distributed for free to every primary and secondary school nation-wide by 2013. and competition is consequently very heated and fierce. The schedules are not uniformly standardized and vary from school to school. Most South Korean middle schools and high schools have school uniforms. and the cloning of two females of an endangered species of wolves by the Seoul National University in 2007.5 million inhabitants making it the world's second largest metropolitan area and easily the most densely populated city in the OECD. by that time. the number of scholarships for foreign students in South Korea will be doubled. Seoul had a population of 9.5 billion by 2010. due to rapid migration from the countryside during the country's quick economic expansion in the 1970s. According to Ministry of Education. South Korea has adopted a new educational program to increase the number of their foreign students through 2010. The rapid growth of the industry has resulted in significant voids in regulation of ethics. The school year is divided into two semesters. Demographics Main articles: Demographics of South Korea and Koreans South Korea is noted for its population density. Biotechnology Since the 1980s. as was highlighted by the scientific misconduct case involving Hwang Woo-Suk. with the first successful cloning of a dog.
about four million people from North Korea crossed the border to South Korea. although small. especially to the United States and Canada. which literally means the single race society).  Regardless of the ethnicity.637. Daejeon (1. 3 Incheon 13 n 652 2. South Korea had 1.000. South Korea is ethnically one of the most homogeneous societies in the world with more than 99 per cent of inhabitants having Korean ethnicity. Following the division of the Korean Peninsula after World War II.495.5 million). Cities of South Korea Main article: List of cities in South Korea See also: Eight Provinces of Korea and List of regions of Korea The table below lists the twenty largest cities within administrative city limits.500 US military personnel serving in South Korea for one year of unaccompanied tour. PRC citizens of Korean ethnicity. view · talk · edit view · talk · edit Largest cities of South 2010 Population and Housing Census of Korea Ra City Ra Province Pop.  which is 34th in the world. 2 Busan Busan 12 105 Incheo 2. the percentage has been increasing.5 million). 841 722.5 million). The average life expectancy in 2008 was 79. The population has also been shaped by international migration.000 English teachers from English-speaking countries temporarily reside in Korea. In terms of the foreign nationals. Koreans describe their ethnic homogeneous society using the word 단일민족국가 (Dan-il minjok guk ga. 174 852.062.708. In addition.106. 897. but approximately 70 percent of the Chinese citizens in Korea are Joseonjok (조선족 in Korean). Gwangju (1.3 million in 2050. 505 847.include Busan (3. 15 City Name Goyang Korea Province Pop.444. 1 Seoul Seoul 11 483 3. however. its population is expected to decrease by 13 percent to 42.10 years. about 43. the Korea National Statistical Office counts that there are 28. For example. As of 2009[update].4 million) and Ulsan (1 million). 4 Daegu Daegu 14 085 5 Daejeo Daejeon 1. 598 667. The population of South Korea is roughly 50.884 foreign residents. Seoul Gyeonggido GyeonggiYongin do Bucheo Gyeonggin do GyeonggiAnsan do Cheong Chungcheo Incheon . more than half of the foreign nationals have Korean ethnicity with a foreign citizenship. South Korea's birthrate is the world's lowest. Incheon (2. South Korea's annual birthrate is approximately 9 births per 1000 people. This trend of net entry reversed over the next forty years due to emigration. nk Name nk 9. South Korea's total population in 1960 was 25 million. If this continues. This number covers approximately 2 percent of the entire population of South Korea.403.5% of the total. Daegu (2. Migrants from the People's Republic of China (PRC) make up 56.4 million).
9% 0. UNESCO World Heritage Site .3% 0.1% Seokguram Grotto in Bulguksa temple. Jeollabuk.064.4 Gyeongsang 510. Namya Gyeonggi.1. Gyeonggi. 16 Jeonju 293 do 079 Anyang 1.603.951.5% 22. 9 19 won gnam-do 731 ngju do 301 Seong Gyeonggi.7% 0.523. 7 Ulsan Ulsan 17 985 Gyeong do 184 gi Gyeonggi.2% 0.Busan 453 ju ngbuk-do 726 1.3% 10.081.643. Cheona Chungcheo 574.8% 18. 8 Suwon 18 do 951 n ngnam-do 022 Chang Gyeongsan 1. 10 20 Pohang nam do 24 buk-do 079 n Gwang 6 Gwangju ju Daegu Religion Main article: Religion in South Korea South Korea religiosity religion percent No religion Buddhism Protestantism Roman Catholic Church Other religions Won Buddhism Jehovah's Witnesses Confucianism Cheondoism Islam 46.062.3% 0.1% 0.469. .
 South Korea is also the second-largest missionary-sending nation.000 resident foreign workers from Muslim countries. Foremost is the impact of environmental pollution on an increasingly urbanized population.000 native followers. Approximately 33 percent of all adults smoke. Cheondoism and Wonbuddhism. and 22. According to the national census as of 2005. a condition exacerbated by the health care system's focus on treatment rather than prevention. Culture A scenery on Dano day Main articles: Culture of Korea and South Korean culture .As of 2005. According to the Ministry of Health and Welfare.  Buddhism was introduced to Korea in the year 372. Along with Neo-Confucianism. Today. South Korea has over 10. In 2001 central government expenditures on health care accounted for about 6 percent of gross domestic product (GDP). while about 37% belong to the Catholic Church. just under half of the South Korean population expressed no religious preference. Christianity is South Korea's largest religion. about 90% of Korean Buddhists belong to Jogye Order. with almost two-thirds of Christians belonging to Protestant churches. The earliest religion practiced was Korean shamanism. accounting for more than half of all South Korean religious adherents. Of the rest. most are Buddhist or Christian. There are approximately 13. particularly Bangladesh and Pakistan. The suicide rate in the nation was 26 per 100.7 million Buddhists. Roman Catholicism has been the fastest growing denomination in South Korea since the late 1980s.9% Catholics). Buddhism was not being practiced during the periods from Three Kingdoms of Korea to Goryeo before suppression under the Joseon Dynasty. Public health and safety Although life expectancy has increased significantly since 1950.2% of the population at that time was Christian (18. the highest in the industrialized world.8% were Buddhist. Islam in South Korea has an estimated less than 30. Today. Most of the National Treasures of South Korea are Buddhist artifacts. in addition to some 100.3% professed to being Protestants and 10.7 million Christians in South Korea today. The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) rate of prevalence at the end of 2003 was less than 0. South Korea faces a number of important health-care issues. Other religions include Islam and various new religious movements such as Jeungism.000 in 2008. and there is no state religion. chronic diseases account for the majority of diseases in South Korea. The incidence of chronic disease in South Korea hovers around 24 percent. freedom of religion is guaranteed by the constitution.1 percent. According to the 2007 census. 29.
 The Korean tea ceremony. Post-war modern Korean art started to flourish in the 1960s and 1970s. The industrialization and urbanization of South Korea have brought many changes to the way Korean people live. Korean pottery and porcelain. and Goryeo's celadon are well known throughout the world. the transposition of the 1993 edition of the Whitney Biennial to Seoul. especially the capital Seoul. social issues appeared as main subjects in the 1980s.  The South Korean Ministry of Culture. sculptures.South Korea shares its traditional culture with North Korea. through funding and education programs. ceramics and the performing arts. and with it brought more diversity. talchum and buchaechum are also notable Korean performing arts. Art Bongsan Talchum Main article: Korean art Korean art has been highly influenced by Buddhism and Confucianism. Sports and Tourism actively encourages the traditional arts. Architecture Main articles: Architecture of South Korea and Korean architecture . while the culture of Korea has been heavily influenced by that of neighbouring China. which can be seen in the many traditional paintings. pansori. such as Joseon's baekja and buncheong. the creation of the Gwangju Biennale and the Korean Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 1995 were notable events. as well as modern forms. Art was influenced by various international events and exhibits in Korea. but the two Koreas have developed distinct contemporary forms of culture since the peninsula was divided in 1945. Due to social instability. Historically. it has nevertheless managed to develop a unique and distinct cultural identity from its larger neighbour. The Olympic Sculpture Garden in 1988. Establishing a harmony between man and nature was also a favorite of this time. Changing economics and lifestyles have led to a concentration of population in major cities. when South Korean Artists took interest in geometrical shapes and intangible subjects. with multi-generational households separating into nuclear family living arrangements.
Yangdong Village of Gyeongju and Korean Folk Village. a UNESCO World Heritage Site Western architecture was first introduced to Korea at the end of the 19th century. Churches. to the opening up of the market to foreign architects. active redevelopment saw new horizons in architectural design. in large part. . Traditional architecture may also be seen at the nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites in South Korea. The anti-Japanese sentiment. Korean traditional architecture is characterized by its harmony with nature. offices for foreign legislation. incorporating modern architectural trends and styles.Modern skyline of Seoul and the Deoksugung palace Due to South Korea's tumultuous history. preserved old houses called hanok. Contemporary architectural efforts have been constantly trying to balance the traditional philosophy of "harmony with nature" and the fast-paced urbanization that the country has been going through in recent years. Traditional architecture can be seen in the palaces and temples. Bulguksa.  People of the upper classes built bigger houses with elegantly curved tiled roofs with lifting eaves. led to the destruction of most buildings constructed during that time. schools and university buildings were built in new styles. and the Korean War. Stimulated by the economic growth in the 1970s and 1980s. resulting in an interesting melange of architectural styles and designs. construction and destruction has been repeated endlessly. Korean architecture entered a new phase of development during the post-Korean War reconstruction. With annexation of Korea by Japan in 1910 the colonial regime intervened in Korea's architectural heritage and Japanese-style modern architecture was imposed. and special sites like Hahoe Folk Village. Ancient architects adopted the bracket system and is characterized by thatched roofs and heated floors called ondol. In the aftermath of the 1988 Seoul Olympics. South Korea has witnessed a wide variation of styles in its architectural landscape due.
vegetables. a fermented. Many K-Pop stars and groups are also well known abroad. though trot is still popular among older Koreans. . 韓食). Korean cuisine is largely based on rice. also known as K-Pop. The Korean royal court cuisine once brought all of the unique regional specialties together for the royal family. hanguk yori (한국요리. which accompany steamcooked short-grain rice. Ingredients and dishes vary by province. soy sauce. and popular music. Soups are also a common part of a Korean meal and are served as part of the main course rather than at the beginning or the end of the meal. ginger. a stew that is typically heavily seasoned with chili pepper and served boiling hot. shellfish and vegetables. Another type is jjigae (찌개). a restaurant located in Insadong. This phenomenon. doenjang (된 장). Korean cuisine usually involves heavy seasoning with sesame oil. film and television See also: Korean Wave In addition to domestic consumption. Meals consumed both by the royal family and ordinary Korean citizens have been regulated by a unique culture of etiquette. Until the 1990s. usually spicy vegetable dish is commonly served at every meal and is one of the best known Korean dishes. Seoul. dance and ballad oriented acts have become dominant in the Korean popular music scene. Kimchi. films. Soups known as guk (국) are often made with meats. fish and meats. or hansik (한식. Hip hop. a hot pepper paste. Similar to guk. including televised drama. rock. Every meal is accompanied by numerous banchan. also generates significant exports to various parts of the world. salt. Korean cuisine. and is more often served in restaurants. and techno into its music.Cuisine Main article: Korean cuisine Korean temple cuisine at Sanchon. There are many significant regional dishes that have proliferated in different variations across the country in the present day. banchan (반찬). The emergence of the rap group Seo Taiji and Boys in 1992 marked a turning point for Korean popular music. South Korean mainstream culture. Traditional Korean meals are noted for the number of side dishes. often called "Hallyu" or the "Korean Wave". tang (탕) has less water. trot and ballads dominated Korean popular music. tofu. and gochujang (고추장). 韓國料理). Contemporary music. has evolved through centuries of social and political change. has swept many countries in Asia and other parts of the world. as the group incorporated elements of popular musical genres of rap. especially in Asia. garlic. a type of fermented soybean paste. noodles.
. respectively. Aside from placing/receiving calls and text messaging. partly due to the existence of screen quotas requiring cinemas to show Korean films at least 73 days a year. The Legend. Technology culture South Korean corporations Samsung and LG were ranked second and third largest mobile phone companies in the world in the first quarter of 2010. a real-time strategy game. Maple Story. recorded in places like the COEX Mall are often broadcast live on TV stations such as MBCGame and Ongamenet. My Name is Kim Sam Soon. Historical/fantasy dramas have included Dae Jang Geum. The dramas are popular mostly in Asia. PC games are usually played in PC bangs which are basically internet cafes dedicated to online games such as Aion. Over one million DMB phones have been sold and the three major wireless communications providers SK Telecom.Since the success of the film Shiri in 1999. All About Eve. The trend has caused some Korean actors to become better known abroad. Boys over Flowers. Goong. Mabinogi. have also become popular outside of Korea. Winter Sonata. mobile phones in the country are widely used for watching Digital Multimedia Broadcasting (DMB) or viewing websites. Kart Rider. Korean film has begun to gain recognition internationally. The stories have tended to have a romance focus. and Sungkyunkwan Scandal. Full House. Wide access to broadband has let online games become a significant part of Korean culture in recent years. especially the short form dramatic mini-series called "dramas". StarCraft. becoming another driving trend for wider recognition. Professional StarCraft players can command considerable salaries in South Korea as members of pro-gaming teams that are sponsored primarily by cell phone providers. Domestic film has a dominant share of the market. Lineage II. Game tournaments.5 million copies in South Korea). KT. such as You're Beautiful. and LG Telecom provide coverage in all major cities and other areas. An estimated 90% of South Koreans own a mobile phone. World of WarCraft. and StarCraft 2 (the long awaited sequel to the original starcraft which sold over 4. is by far the most popular televised computer game in South Korea. Sudden Attack. Autumn Fairy Tale. Samsung Galaxy Tab Korean television shows.
an 8 team circuit. Recent polling indicates that a majority. The Korean Republic team (as it is known) has qualified for every World Cup since Mexico 1986. In . kumdo and subak. was established in 1982. and has broken out of the group stage twice: first in 2002.7%. and again in 2010. Purple Arena Football has traditionally been regarded as the most popular spectator sport in Korea. Regular season K-league football matches televised nationally average 35% share of the television-watching audience. The South Korean national team finished third in the 2006 World Baseball Classic and second in the 2009 tournament. Other Korean martial arts include taekkyeon. The national football team became the first team in the Asian Football Confederation to reach the World Cup semi-finals in the 2002 FIFA World Cup. kuk sool won. The Korea Professional Baseball league. 56. The martial art taekwondo originated in Korea. with baseball ranked second at 19. which was jointly hosted by South Korea and Japan. tang soo do. However.Sports Main article: Sport in South Korea A taekwondo practitioner demonstrating dollyo chagi technique. modern rules were standardised and taekwondo became an official Olympic sport in 2000. with some sources claiming it has surpassed football as the most popular sport in the country. In the 1950s and 1960s.1% of respondents. Baseball was first introduced to Korea in 1905 and has since become an increasingly popular spectator sport. with a large screen at Gwanghwamun crossing in Seoul broadcasting the game live. of South Korean sports fans continue to self-identify as football fans. The team's 2009 final game against Japan was widely watched in Korea. European football leagues are also televised and widely followed. when it was defeated by Uruguay in the Round of 16. the polling did not indicate the extent to which respondents follow both sports. hapkido.
judo. South Korea won the gold medal in baseball. 10 silver medals and 11 bronze medals. hockey. and 8 bronze). ice hockey is emerging as Anyang Halla won their first ever Asia League Ice Hockey title in March 2010. South Korea. and will host again in 2014 (Incheon). Greco-Roman wrestling. the South Korean city of Daegu will host the 2011 IAAF World Championships in Athletics. handball. South Korea has three horse racing tracks of which Seoul Race Park in Gwacheon. Seoul hosted a professional triathlon race. South Korea is especially strong in short track speed skating. the Korean National Baseball team won the gold medal. coming fourth with 12 gold medals. World Peace Gate at Olympic Park. figure Skating. The Seoul Olympic Museum is a museum in Seoul. taekwondo. freestyle wrestling. badminton. In 2011. speed skating. Seoul. about 400 kilometres (250 mi) south of Seoul. In October 2010.the 2008 Summer Olympics. It also hosted the Winter Universiade in 1997. shooting. however. South Korea. dedicated to the 1988 Summer Olympics. table tennis. Gaming forums around the world commonly refer to the computer game Starcraft as the national "sport" of South Korea. baseball. In 1988. South Korea regularly performs well in archery. at the Baseball Worldcup. short track speed skating. which is part of the International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championship Series in May 2010. and weightlifting. has won a total of 45 medals (23 gold. Korea won the gold medal. Also in 1982.  Internatianal Championship Host Olympic Games • FIFA World Cup • IAAF World Championships in Athletics • Seoul Summer 1988 South Korea & Japan 2002 Daegu 2011 Asian Games AFC Asian Cup Formula One . Gyeonggi-do is the biggest. South Korea hosted the Summer Olympics in Seoul. 2002 (Busan). South Korean athletes have shown skill in the Winter Olympics as well. 14 silver. after the 2010 Winter Olympics. due to the fact it is televised more than any other sport in South Korea. South Korea hosted its first Formula One race at the Korean International Circuit in Yeongam. South Korea hosted the Asian Games in 1986 (Seoul). At the Guangzhou Asian Games. the Asian Winter Games in 1999 and the Summer Universiade in 2003.
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Professional Support 24/5. tourism.it/Brazil_Europe Economic Find practical business information on economic.co. Contact Us! AlmaWeb. though still a major industry. South Korea became a major producer of telecommunication devices and computer parts. The industrial sector meets most of the needs of the country. Fund. the emphasis was on light industry products such as fabric and clothing. including forestry and . Its relatively insignificant industries mainly served its domestic market until the early 1960s. and finance is now South Korea's largest economic sector.com Beat inflation By investing in Morgan Stanley A. but its manufacturing branch cannot produce without heavy imports of capital goods .C.uk/journals MBA Business Relations Focused In Brazil-Europe Relations Scholarship Available. In its aftermath. is in the process of decline. of the Republic of Korea (South Korea) in the southern half of the Korean Peninsula and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea) in its northern half. while industry. Construction.5 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 1999.E.allbusiness. later supplemented by assembly-line production of electronic products like radios or black-and-white television sets. consisting of growing industries like retail .com/India Ads by Google ISA 2011 Are you going to the International Studies Association Conference? www.UniBo.AtlaseForex.tandf. By the late 1960s. when the South Korean government encouraged massive industrialization. claimed a 43. www.com The 1945 surrender of Japan in World War II ended about half a century of the Japanese colonization of Korea. after the Korean War (1950-1953). South Korea chose an export-led industrialization strategy to produce labor-intensive products that could be produced more cheaply than in North America and Western Europe and therefore competitive and exportable to those markets. in 1948. www.Foreign Currency Trading Regulated Broker. Know more www. the "temporary" division of Korea led to the creation. accounting for 51.5 percent share. The service sector. Unlike many developing countries. This sector.MorganStanley. Forex Analytics. Demo. South Korea opted for a free-enterprise economy at the time of independence and has since sought to consolidate it with a great deal of success. The mainly agrarian nation began to industrialize in the 1950s. which was the main economic activity in the 1960s. accounted for only about 5 percent of GDP in 1999. including construction and mining. Initially. Agriculture.
about 33 percent higher than the same period in 1999. GDP contracted by 6.S. exceeding the total foreign investment over the previous 35 years. vegetables. The South Korean government has encouraged and generously supported its growth. had to accept the conditions outlined by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in its rescue package: to liberalize its closed and highly protective economy through reforms and make it accessible to foreign competition. and agriculture 5.8 percent (1. a process that has continued to this date. The World Factbook reported similar. though South Korea is still dependent on large imports of grains. and the European Union. which is South Korea's largest export market. The South Korean government has helped the industrialization of its country via protectionist measures (the imposition of import quotas and tariffs aimed at limiting foreign competition in South Korea) as well as generous government financing for emerging industries and subsidization to make their products competitive in international markets. are the major exports.9 billion in 1998 and soon soared to US$15. including South Korea. and continued its growth in the first quarter of 2000. including foreign enterprises. with an average annual GDP growth rate of 8. which desperately needed foreign financial assistance to stop the wave of bankruptcies and closures of large enterprises.4 percent. These government measures continued until the 1990s when they provoked criticism on the part of South Korea's competitors and trading partners.7 billion.353. . noting that services contributed 53 percent.000 workers) in 1999.6 percent (556. In 1999.4 percent. It also brought the inflation rate down to 0. and fruits. Two factors helped economic recovery in 1999: the growth of the U. including light. and large direct foreign investments.5 billion. when the average inflation rate in the 1980s was 8. Liberalization has sought to change South Korea's economy from one where the state directs and controls economic activities into one where the private sector. which pushed the unemployment rate to 6.7 percent in 1999.000 workers). was expanded and modernized in the 1950s and 1960s.000) in May 2000. Devastated by the crisis. and it fell to 3. the South Korean government. while protecting it from foreign competition. a large increase from the 1997 rate of 2.8 percent in 1998. far lower than during the 1980s. made possible by economic liberalization .8 percent in 1999. The recovery pushed the unemployment rate down to 4. The growth rate fell to about 6. Apart from a limited trade in fishery products. fish. Inflation in 2000 was expected to be about 3 percent.7 percent in 1998 alone as a result of the financial crisis. The agricultural sector produces basic domestic needs in rice. manufactured goods. but not the same estimates of each sector's contributions for the same year. Japan. Data for the first 4 months of 2000 indicate such investment totaled US$3. Inflation jumped from 4. Nevertheless.4 percent during that period. South Korea's economy grew rapidly from the 1960s through the 1980s. a phenomenal increase from the 1970s when it accounted for about 6 percent on average.6 percent of GDP. and forestry products (timber). economy. the South Korean market remained highly protected until 1997 when the financial crisis hit many Asian countries.000).9 percent annually during the 1993-97 period. as most of the borrowers were unable to repay their large debts. Their growing pressure on the South Korean government to open its market to foreign competition and to stop subsidizing South Korean exports forced it to begin addressing these demands.and heavy-industry products and high-tech devices and parts. South Korea's GDP grew by 10.fishery. exports accounted for 45 percent of GDP. industry 41. a record low rate over the previous 3 decades. Heavy borrowing by the public and private sector .461.8 percent (1. The latter rose to US$8. including the United States. especially from foreign banks. created the crisis. The estimated growth rate for the entire year is about 8 percent.5 percent in 1997 to 7.7 percent (about 800. Trade plays a major role in South Korea's export-oriented economy.
It also facilitated an agreement between the South Korean government and the foreign banks for rescheduling debts held by South Korean private and public debtors. the chaebols' reform program is yet to be implemented. which resulted in a series of bankruptcies and closures of major enterprises. less successful. By and large. The IMF arranged a rescue package of about US$60 billion.2 billion in 1997 to US$148. would likely increase its foreign debt substantially. However. Encouraged and facilitated by the South Korean government. including foreign banks. except for 2 development banks. The program aims at turning the weak chaebols into strong corporations capable of offsetting the destructive impact of the financial crisis so that they might grow and compete with large foreign corporations inside and outside the South Korean market. which in 1999 was equal to more than 25 percent of its GDP. The government's tight control on fiscal and monetary activities has been loosened in order to facilitate domestic and foreign private investments. However.4 billion. which could reduce its exports and create a trade deficit. a predictably poor economic performance of South Korea's main trading partners (the United States and Japan) in 2001. created the 1997 financial crisis. Financing of a short-term trade deficit caused by an increase in the prices of imported oil products seems to be the reason for this increase.8 billion in early 2000). This required the nation to embark on a program of privatization designed to minimize the role of the public sector in the economy. but are still much smaller than its foreign debt. most of which was borrowed on floating rates by major private enterprises. The IMF-led rescue package prevented the worsening of the situation and contributed to a gradual economic recovery. most of which have long survived on heavy borrowing from public and private financial institutions. Statistics from the first 4 months of 2000 indicated a small increase in debt (US$4 billion). Liberalization has also involved the restructuring of financial institutions and big corporations. a 5-fold increase from 1990. pushing its total to US$140. In 1998.4 billion in 1999. the South Korean government has tried to reduce excessive competition between big corporations and to encourage their merger to create viable enterprises. the government still owns about 108 non-financial enterprises. and the privatization of all state-owned banks. a Foreign Investment Protection Act was ratified to encourage and to ensure the safety of foreign investments. South Korea's foreign exchange reserves are significant (US$86. . South Korea has a very large foreign debt . This unfinished process has resulted in the sale of government assets in some large corporations to foreign investors. The heavy burden of this debt. banks and large corporations borrowed heavily to finance industrialization. the reform of the financial system has been more successful than that of big corporations known as chaebols (conglomerates). as well as the privatization of most public banks.7 billion in 1998 and to US$136. creating a debt that amounted to US$163. The debt burden emerged as a major economic problem in the 1990s. By 2000. so far. the 1998 corporate reform program called the "Big Deal" has been.5 billion in 1996. For the most part. Liberalization has also resulted in the removal of government regulations that restrict the economic activities of domestic and foreign enterprises in favor of a less-regulated economic system. The financial system's reform has justified the closure or merger of many non-viable private and public banks that formerly survived on government assistance. To that end.operate with minimum government regulation. It has also sought to encourage them to eliminate economic activities that are not of crucial significance to their main operations. most of which are planned to be sold. This situation also undermined the creditworthiness of most surviving enterprises and forced the South Korean government to seek IMF assistance to prevent the total collapse of the economy. The recovery and the economic reform with its tough regulations on borrowing by large enterprises have reduced the debt from US$159.
the South Korean economy depends heavily on imported capital goods and technology for its industries. User Contributions: . This policy led to a limited investment of South Korean corporations in North Korea. For South Korea. Another example is its automobile industry's reliance on imported parts and technology. 184. In 1999. Second. The South Korean economy has 2 major weaknesses. Each helped its protegé establish a peculiar economic system: free-enterprise in South Korea and a planned economy in North Korea. The Cold War rivalry between the United States and the Soviet Union made them the protectors of South Korea and North Korea. South Korea is the second largest importer of liquefied natural gas (LNG). The division of the Korean Peninsula into 2 different political and economic systems has been a major factor.9 billion in 1999. and nearly 16. it still needs imported chip machinery to produce them.5 percent of its annual imports in 1999. Public resentment of the Japanese has limited their official and cultural ties. and by mid-1999 a ban on Japanese cultural imports was lifted. where local cheap labor is used to produce electronics for exports.2 trillion to rescue the North Korean economy. machinery. constituting 40. its export industries require foreign machinery and equipment for production.1 percent of its energy consumption in 1999. South Korea's relations with North Korea have been improving since 1998 when President Kim Daejung initiated his "Sunshine Policy" to improve bilateral relations with the north. The 1998 visit of President Kim to Japan broke the diplomatic ice between the 2 countries. Instead. and technology for South Korea. South Korea's Hyundai group began tourist cruises to North Korea in 1998. Threat of a North Korean military invasion forced the South Koreans to spend a significant amount on defense (US$9. Despite its emergence as a major exporter of light and heavy industrial products. this situation led to a lack of ties with the 2 major supporters of North Korea: Russia and China. While South Korea has surpassed Japan and the United States in selling memory chips. equal to 3. Japan has been a major source of equipment. Japan and the United States have been the major source of technology and capital goods for South Korea.History and geography have shaped the development of the South Korean economy to a great extent. These ties have since expanded to the point where South Korea now produces some of its laborintensive export products in China.4 percent of such consumption. The South Koreans have backed the idea of peaceful unification of the 2 Koreas. which lasted until the early 1990s when both sides began to normalize relations. 80.000 South Koreans visited North Korea.9 metric tons of LNG. Given the depth of North Korea's economic problems. but the trips were suspended after a South Korean tourist was arrested on spy charges. it imported 874 million barrels of oil. respectively. which would force them to spend an estimated US$1. However.2 percent of GDP). South Korea prefers a gradual process of unification in which it would help the economy of North Korea through modernization of infrastructure and by production of labor-intensive export goods in that country. mostly from Malaysia and Indonesia.4 million barrels of petroleum products. The heavy pressure of the 1997 financial crisis required Japanese economic aid and facilitated better official ties. The situation has been improving since 1998 when President Kim Dae-jung took office. a significant increase from 1979 when fuel imports accounted for 73. and has provided its largest source of tourism. The bitter memory of the Japanese colonial era has also affected South Korean-Japanese economic relations. These fuel imports accounted for 97. they are not interested in an immediate unification. First is its heavy reliance on imported fossil fuels (oil and natural gas). During that period. South Korea established ties with Russia in 1990 and China in 1992.
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