Japanese firms pledge US$193m to S Korea

South Korea has won investment pledges of US$193 million from Japanese companies during a road show in the country, the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy said on Wednesday.

Ministry officials said representatives from 150 South Korean companies took part in the three-day investor relations sessions in Tokyo and Osaka that began on Monday.

According to the ministry, nine Japanese companies, including Toyo Gosei, Central Glass, Asahi Glass and a consortium linked to Mitsui Mining, expressed a clear intent in investing in South Korea.

Central Glass, through Display Glass Alliance, promised to invest $63 million in South Korea.

During the road show, South Korea's vice commerce, industry and energy minister, Cho Hwan-eik, called for greater cooperation between the two countries to deal effectively with growing global economic challenges.

"Japanese investment in South Korea is a win-win for the two Asian economies that are currently laden with sluggish economies," Cho was quoted as saying.

In talks with Japanese officials, the vice minister touched on the need to conduct natural resources development in third countries to alleviate the high degree of dependency confronting both countries, the ministry said.

South Korean governors from North Gyeongsan and North Chungcheong provinces and the vice chairman of the Federation of Korean Trade Unions also took part in the tour.

In addition, top executives from Samsung Electronics, Hyundai Motor Co and LG Philips took the opportunity while in Japan to hold one-on-one talks with prospective partners for investment and sales.

The participation of one of the nation's largest umbrella labor groups in the tour helped send a positive message to prospective investors concerned about South Korea's "volatile" labor relations, the ministry said.

600450 Japanese firms pledge US$193m to S Korea glassonweb.com

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