The Korean government selected 13 new industry engines, including wearable smart devices and self-driving cars, for concentrated R&D support. For five years to come, the government is planning to invest at least 2 trillion won (US$1.9 billion) in these sectors in tandem with the private sector.
It announced the news at the fourth National Science Technology Council meeting, which was presided over by Prime Minister Jung Hong-won on December 19.
Specifically, the 13 growth engines are divided into wearable smart devices, self-driving cars, high-speed and vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) unmanned aircraft systems, extreme environmental offshore plants, advanced materials processing systems, security and healthcare robots in the system and industry field, carbon materials and nonferrous materials for high-tech industries, personalized healthcare systems, nano-based biomimetic devices, and virtual training platforms in the creative industry field.
In particular, the global wearable device market is expected to reach US$266.4 billion in size until 2024 from this year’s US$8.4 billion. Korea has been highly competitive when it comes to smart device manufacturing, but its technological strength for key materials and platforms has been quite weak. The government is going to deal with weak points through intensive R&D assistance.