South Korean President Moon Jae-in and Chinese President Xi Jinping meet with each other in Beijing on December 14. Quite unprecedentedly, no joint press conference will take place with regard to the summit talks. It is said that the lack of press conference is to hide their different opinions on THAAD deployment in South Korea.
China’s THAAD retaliation is ongoing and the South Korean government is still passive in dealing with it. The China National Tourism Administration recently allowed travel agencies in Beijing and Shandong to sell packages for group tour in South Korea, but cruise ship- and chartered plane-based packages still remain prohibited.
The disposal of the 99 Lotte Marts and 13 Lotte Supermarkets in China is showing little progress as well with the Chinese government still aiming at the company that provided its land for THAAD deployment. Under the circumstances, investors are looking to get the marts and supermarkets dirt cheap.
Nonetheless, the South Korean government is not stepping in. Last month, some news outlets reported that the Chinese government told local travel agencies not to include the Lotte Group’s hotels and duty free stores in their packages. On November 28, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of South Korea remarked that the reports have yet to be confirmed.
In the meantime, South Korean President Moon Jae-in’s visit to China from December 13 to 16 is accompanied by more than 260 South Korean companies and organizations. They include Korea Chamber of Commerce & Industry Chairman Park Yong-man, SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won, LG Group Vice Chairman Koo Bon-joon, Doosan Group Chairman Park Jung-won, Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Yoon Boo-keun, and CJ Chairman Sohn Gyung-shik.
The companies and organizations are across a wide variety of industrial sectors. SM Entertainment CEO Kim Young-min and WeMade Entertainment CEO Jang Hyun-kuk are expected to contribute to the revival of the Korean Wave in China as two members of the delegation.