The Korean government is aiming to nurture five global leaders and a market share of 6.0% by fostering the 3D printing industry by 2019. On top of that the government also plans to raise the Korean technology ratio to 20% through domestic and foreign patent applications. As of 2015, the Korean 3D printing industry has a global market share of 4.0% and its own technology ratio stood at only 9.9%. The government allocated the promotion of the 3D printing industry 35 billion won which are combined budgets for the 3D printing industry of the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning and the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy for next year.
The government held the 8th Information and Communication Strategy Committee meeting on December 27 and confirmed a basic plan for the promotion of the 3D printing industry including such contents. 3D printing technology has been regarded as a key technology for manufacturing innovation and the creation of new markets by changing a paradigm of current industry since 2012. However, the Korean 3D printing industry still has a technological gap with developed countries. For example, as of 2015, the Korean 3D printing industry’s rate of dependence on foreign countries was 80.5% for equipment, 87.4% for materials, and 87.5% for software (SW).
First, in order to create demand in the 3D printing market, the government will support production of discontinued parts and customized products in the public sector such as defense and railway. Moreover, the government is planning to support the creation of customized treatment devices in the dentistry and rehabilitation sectors which often use 3D printing technology. In order to strengthen the technological competitiveness of the 3D printing industry, the government will concentrate on technology development in next-generation core sectors such as medicine and biotechnology and intelligent materials whose demand is strong. 3D printing technology will be used for advanced industries such as shipbuilding, automobiles and machinery as well.
A budget of 35 billion won for next year was drawn up for the growth of the 3D printing industry. However, the figure is combined budgets for the 3D printing industry of the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning and the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy for next year. If budgets of other ministries are set in March next year, the government's budget for fostering the 3D printing industry will increase.