[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.]
The Jeju Free International City Development Center’s (JDC) chairman spoke about the beginning of the JDC and how it was built. He said, “In 1997 Korea suffered under the IMF. This meant that Korea didn’t have enough money to sell or buy things. The nation helped to solve this problem by doing things such as collecting gold. This problem occurred because people spent too much money on useless things. So many companies went under. Then I saw the beauty of Jeju with its many hotels, buildings, and beautiful natural landscapes. There was potential for development. By having many hotels, more tourists could visit, and by having many attractions, visitors can enjoy themselves even more on Jeju. So I decided to make JDC and develop Jeju.”
He mentioned a lot about the Free International City and protecting Jeju’s nature. He said, “The Free International City means the development of Jeju by having products, systems and legislations with a focus of the natural environment.” The point of JDC was to keep Jeju’s natural beauty while developing other sectors so that Jeju could be a tourist industry.
The chairman also mentioned a lot about Jeju’s history. He said, “Jeju is not ours. It is a gift given from other people from ages ago, and it is us who make Jeju. A happy life on Jeju comes from us and Jeju’s ancestors.”
He also talked about the differences that will come about when Jeju becomes a real Free International City. He said, “I think that happiness is not a matter of money. Of course money and culture play a part in happiness, but we need to produce goods that can be sold and distributed.”
He also spoke about the project that will be most helpful to students. He said, “To students, it is important to make a place in Jeju to study so they don’t have to go abroad. It is also important to provide them with job opportunities.”
He then spoke about his favorite project. “My favorite project is the healthcare business and the international village.” However, he didn’t speak to the exact reason why the healthcare business and international village were his favorites.
The last thing he talked about was his goals for the future. He said, “My goals are to make Jeju a place where people live wealthy lives, and to protect Jeju’s nature.”
If you are a student and are interested in the JDC, there is an English camp that is opening in this summer. Teachers will pick students who have talent but that don’t have enough money to come. He said JDC will support those students for 3 weeks. They’ve also opened a flight museum, so if you want to visit, all are welcome.
ⓒ Jeju Weekly 2009 (http://www.jejuweekly.com)
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