S. Korea eyes tailored support for chip, car, ship sectors

SEOUL-- South Korea said Thursday it plans to provide tailored support to key sectors, such as chipmaking and automaking, to help them cope with the changing business environment and expand their presence in the global market.

Under the plan, the country seeks to emerge as a powerhouse not only in memory chips but also in the non-memory segment as well, according to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy.

Chips accounted for roughly 18 percent of the country's monthly exports, with outbound shipments of the products rising 8.6 percent on-year in March to reach US$9.51 billion, the highest reading in 28 months.

The ministry estimates South Korea's global market share in the DRAM segment at 71 percent as of 2020, while that of NAND flash stands at 44.9 percent.

"We have discussed various ways to support the industry, including establishing a global chip cluster, while providing support in terms of taxes, financing and the education of experts," the ministry said.

Last month, the country granted the final approval to SK hynix Inc.'s 120 trillion-won (US$106 billion) project to build a new semiconductor complex.

The announcement came about two years after the company proposed to build an industrial cluster, which will house four new semiconductor fabrication plants.

The country said it will seek to develop core technologies of the industry and revamp related regulations to provide local firms with more leeway.

South Korea will also have local chip companies work closely with the automobile segment to cope with the global shortages of automotive chips.

As for the automobile industry, South Korea said it will help local businesses penetrate deeper into the industry for eco-friendly cars.

The country will support the development of hydrogen-powered ships as well, while helping local shipbuilders apply smart technologies in the process of constructing vessels.

Source: Yonhap News Agency