[This article is written by a JDC Junior Journalist. The JDC Junior Journalist program is an educational project sponsored by Jeju Free International City Development Center (JDC). JDC Junior Journalist articles are only briefly edited by mentors before publishing.]
On May 17th, 2014, there was a press conference in Jeju Free International Development Center with the chairman of JDC(Jeju Free International Development Center) - Kim Han Gook. JDC is an institution that conducts various projects to make Jeju into a free international city.
JDC is propeling 6 main projects such as constructing the Jeju Science Park, the Jeju Global Education City, the Jeju Health Care Town, the Resort Residential Complex, the Jeju Aerospce Museum and the Jeju Myth History Park.
Chairman Kim Han Gook, explained the reasons that the JDC was founded. “In 1997, there was a huge economic crisis in Korea. Jeju had a geographic advantage, being in the corner of the Pacific Ocean. The nation wanted to make Jeju into a Free International City with modern transportation facilities and tourist industry that focused on Jeju’s beautiful nature and unique culture. So an institution that propels the projects was necessary, and that’s why the JDC was founded.”
He also defined the term Free International City as a city that is a spot of free transfer of people, products and resources. “We have to preserve Jeju’s beautiful nature, so we cannot build factories here. Therefore we have to focus on the natural resources. We bring useful foreign people and resources to Jeju. Also there’s no visas for most countries to come to Jeju, which helps with the free transferring of people.”
As an answer for the reasons why it is important to make Jeju into a Free International City, he said that “Jeju is not an island that is just for us. We have to preserve and save the natural scenery for our descendants. Compared to Jeju’s past GDP (Gross Domestic Product), and thanks to our hard-working ancestors, there has been great advances in Jeju’s economy. Because of that, we also have to leave this beautiful city for our descendants. That’s why we have to make a Jeju into a Free International City.”
When speaking about the JDC’s aims and goals he said that “Our goal is to make Jeju citizens become both healthy and wealthy. We will work to make some money that keep and preserve Jeju’s natural resources.”
ⓒ Jeju Weekly 2009 (http://www.jejuweekly.com)
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