The Korean government plans to establish a network for local companies overseas to effectively support their activities abroad and to develop the network into an interest group. The plan aims to address the difficulties which Korean companies experience in overseas markets.
The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE) announced on January 23 the Plan to Vitalize Overseas Corporate Consultative Bodies at the International Economic Ministers’ Meeting, focusing on strengthening the function of overseas companies’ networks as an interest group, as foreign chambers of commerce are doing.
Up to now, Korea has operated a number of corporate consultative bodies abroad. However, most of their functions were limited to friendship and social exchange activities. To the contrary, Chambers of Commerce of the US, Germany, the UK, and Japan have powerful functions as interest groups to propose policies and raise issues to the government of their host country.
To that end, the Korean government is going to formalize an overseas network body by giving it a special membership to the Korea Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KCCI). The existing domestic business bodies, such as the KCCI and Korea International Trade Association (KITA), will designate their own jurisdictions, including those where their network has been already established, and will support them for work forces, budget, and so on. The government will monitor their operations by country and promote common projects with them.
The overseas corporate consultative bodies will act as interest groups in cooperation with diplomatic offices in the country of their presence. The consultative bodies will be named KOCHAM or the Korea Business Association (KBA).
The Korean Government will support organizing the consultative bodies and their activities by establishing a task force composed of the Foreign Affairs Ministry, MOTIE, KCCI, KITA, and KOTRA.