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Realizing a Great Vision for the Future
While appealing to foreign investors, BJFEZ pushes forward with a vision to grow into a global business hub
Realizing a Great Vision for the Future
  • By matthew
  • April 15, 2010, 16:16
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The Busan Jinhae Free Economic Zone (BJFEZ) Authority held a ceremony to celebrate its 6th anniversary on March 12 with approximately 500 employees participating. The ceremony included an anniversary speech, honoring employees and other programs to celebrate the occasion. There are currently 18 berths at the new port in service in the BJFEZ, with plans for this number to rise to a total of 30 by the end of 2015. The zone is home to advanced foreign companies in the automobile, shipbuilding and machinery sectors.

At the moment, the authority is actively conducting projects to make the BJFEZ a successful free economic zone model which harmonizes port logistics, global business, advanced industries, education and medical services and good living environments for foreigners. In this manner, the authority has laid the foundation to play a dynamic role in the growth of Korea in the 21st century.

The authority has finished projects at the Shinho Industrial Complex, the Busan Science Industrial Complex and the Namyang District out of a total of 23 development zones.

Meanwhile, sales and development projects are underway in 12 districts, such as the Myeongji and Nammun Districts. The authority is also pushing forward with development projects at eight districts, including Dudong and Myeongdong.

Since its establishment, the authority has attracted US$5.27 billion in foreign investment via a total of 53 investment cases. Among the 53 projects, US$4.37 billion is being invested into the BJFEZ. In addition, 647 firms have moved into the Shinho Industrial Complex and the Busan Science Industrial Complex in total.

The National Assembly of Korea passed a Special Law on the Designation and Management of Free Economic Zones in January of 2009. This was a result of the authority’s efforts to abolish various irrational regulations regarding the activation of free economic zones, development projects and foreign capital inducement. The new law prepared the ground for 100% financial support from the government for infrastructure and allows mayors and governors the power to approve development plans. The law also allows public servants the ability to stay longer (from three to five years) in their dispatch program in order to secure more specialties.

In the zone, people can visit the 2020 Vision Hall where they can observe the current progress in the development and the future of the BJFEZ. To date, more than 10,000 people have visited the hall.

To carry out social overhead capital (SOC) projects for the BJFEZ, the authority has secured a total of 369.6 billion won in public funds. Accordingly, 12 SOC projects are currently being conducted according to plans. In particular, the Eulsuk-do Grand Bridge was completed to help companies in the BJFEZ reduce logistic costs and enjoy a better transportation environment. In addition, the government designated the Mieum and Nammun Districts as parts and material-specialized complexes in July 2009. Development of the two districts will quicken thanks to the designation.

The year 2010 marks the fourth year of the second phase of the development. Therefore, the authority will get more aggressive and strategic in investment attraction activities at both home and abroad. Thus, the authority will go ahead with the development of the Myeongji and Ungdong Districts on a full scale. The two districts are the two axis of development in the BJFEZ.

With the aim of securing more land in the zone, the authority will request the government to decrease the cultural property protection site of the Myeongji District. The authority also plans to attract more advanced foreign companies, as well as make changes to the development plan for the Dudong and Macheon Districts. Business sites for companies will be formed in the Mieum, Hwajeon and Nammun Districts. The SOC project will also be promoted too, with the authority building a road between Sosa and Noksan.

In 2010, the authority aims to attract US$250 million in foreign investment, with its goal being to induce a total of US$10 billion in foreign investment by the end of 2020. To reach this goal, the authority will attract advanced foreign companies to the Mieum, Hwajeon and Nammun Districts, as well as use sophisticated marketing for the Myeongji Green City Project and the Ungdong Tourism and Leisure Complex. The BJFEZ will also feature world-class foreign educational, medical and research organizations so as to create a global investment environment.

As part of its vision for 2020, the BJFEZ aims to grow into the economic center of the Busan, Ulsan and South Gyeongsang Province Belt. Therefore, the authority will turn the BJFEZ into a hub of logistics and business with the construction of a new airport, expansion of modern facilities in New Busan Port and a new railroad to be connected to the Trans-Siberian Railroad (TSR), Trans-Chinese Railroad (TCR) and Trans-Manchurian Railroad (TMR).

The authority believes that the BJFEZ will become an international city of 300,000 people, and featuring advanced medical and educational facilities, a modern convention center and wonderful tourism and leisure facilities. As a result, the authority expects that the free economic zone will increase production by 144 trillion won, create added value of 58 trillion won and create 110,000 new jobs by the end of 2020.