Concerns, opportunities for nanotech in S. Korea

from the World-Watch dept.
South Korea needs to encourage investment in new fields of technology to avert a collapse of the country's manufacturing sector, according to comments by Park Sung-rok, a researcher of the Korea Economic Research Institute (KERI) in a discussion of a government development program for the next 10 years. Referring to the government's efforts to foster the four future technologies – information technology, biotechnology, environmental technology and nanotechnology – Park said that of the four, nanotechnology would be the core technology. Pointing out that Korea's investment in these future technologies is less than one tenth that of the United States or Japan, he expressed concerns about Korea's future status in these technological fields. His comments were reported in the Korea Herald ("Expert warns of manufacturing sector collapse", 24 July 2001).
However, another KH report ("Sukgyung AT Co. zooms in on nanotechnology application market", 27 July 2001) shows that private sector firms in South Korean are beginning to move into the field: "Although the government and some companies have just begun to realize the importance of nanotechnology, few Korean firms have jumped into this next-generation technology," said Lim Hyung-sup, CEO of Sukgyung AT Co., a venture startup that produces basic materials used in electronic parts.

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