기사 본문 영역

상세페이지

“Golden Time”
입력 2014.10.30 (14:20) 수정 2014.10.30 (15:28) News Today
자동재생
동영상영역 시작
동영상영역 끝
[Anchor Lead]

President Park Geun-hye's administrative policy speech at the National Assembly focused on the economy. She said that now is the last "golden time" to improve the economy and vowed to do her best even if it would result in a financial deficit. She also urged parliament to process the public pension reform bill within this year.

[Pkg]

President Park Geun-hye is the first Korean president in the constitutional history to give administrative policy speeches for two consecutive years. In her recent speech she focused on the economic recovery. Park said she expanded the 2015 budget by 20 trillion won, or approximately 19 billion U.S. dollars, to produce tangible results of her three-year economic innovation plan, even if that would result in a financial deficit.

[Soundbite] Park geun-hye (President) : "It's the last golden time to revive the economy, which is standing at a crossroads between recovery and stagnation."

The president said she has earmarked 7.8 billion dollars to promoting creative economy, 17.8 billion dollars to R&D investment, and around 109 billion dollars to welfare. The welfare budget surpassed 30 percent of the nation's entire budget for the first time. Park added that she has increased the public safety budget by 17.9 percent to reach 13.8 billion dollars. The president then urged the parliament yet again, to process the public pension reform bill by the end of this year.

[Soundbite] "We must take this seriously and do our best not to hand down debts to both our nation and future generations, and prevent the national pension system from going bankruptcy."

The president also vowed to eradicate corruption in the national defense and military equipment industries because it undermines national security. Park stressed she would boost the domestic demand by promoting corporate investment through regulatory reforms and prevent bad regulations from taking root. The opposition party criticized the president's speech for its failure to address the issues of operational wartime command transfer and the Sewol ferry disaster. some 60 members of Sewol ferry victims, amid tears, asked the president to meet with them at the entrance of the National Assembly building.

2. Sewol Disaster

[Anchor Lead]

This Saturday will mark the 200th day since the sinking of the Sewol ferry. However, the truth behind the maritime disaster remains elusive, and the special law to get to the bottom of it still hasn’t been passed.

[Pkg]

Citizens sing a song to console the spirits of the Sewol ferry victims and the families they left behind. Although time has passed, the bereaved families remain in as much pain as they felt 200 days ago when their loved ones suddenly died. Their wounds have grown deeper during their fight for the legislation of a special Sewol law on the street and at the National Assembly.

[Soundbite] Jeon In-sook (Mother of Late Im Kyung-bin) : "As a parent, I hope that other parents won't have to go through this heartbreaking, debilitating pain."

A theatrical play depicts the bereaved families' desperate search for the truth behind the accident, and the frustrations they face due to misunderstandings about them and the special Sewol law. The Sewol families appealed repeatedly to the nation to join forces for the legislation of an effective special law.

[Soundbite] Jeon Myung-sun (Head of Sewol Families' Association) : "We will never give up until this special law is enacted and the nation becomes safer."

Lit by candles, the memorial altar was filled with the warmth of visitors. Participants pledged never to forget the tragedy, and to work to make the country a safer place.

3. Counterfeit Headaches

[Anchor Lead]

Counterfeit Chinese products are causing a headache for Korean manufacturers. Even fake auto parts disguised as Korean-made are being exported worldwide.

[Pkg]

This auto parts company in China has a secret door that leads to a large warehouse. There are piles of auto parts in there, from radiator grilles to oil filters. Korean automakers' logos are attached to them, but they were all made illegally
in China.

[Soundbite] (Chinese Police) : "This is a counterfeit Korean brand. There's no such product that was developed in China."

About ten firms producing fake auto parts are caught each month. But the sale of counterfeits shows no signs of abating. What's more, they're even exported overseas.

[Soundbite] Yoo Myung-chul (Vice President, China Branch of Hyundai Mobis) : "Our branches in Europe and, especially, in North America crack down on fake products imported from China."

Famous Korean apparel brands are in high demand at this large shopping mall. All these T-shirts at the store are
fake.

[Soundbite] "Is this an authentic product? I don't know."

Fake clothes that are sold here are also smuggled to Korea.

[Soundbite] Won Sang-yeon (President, China Branch of Black Yak) : "All the brands are having a hard time because of counterfeits.

This product says in Korean that it's banana-flavored milk. However, it's really a Chinese product disguised as one made in Korea. Last year, this company posted 28 million U.S. dollars in sales revenue in China, but this year the figure plunged 40 percent because of these fake products. Almost all popular products are immediately counterfeited in China. Korean companies are facing increasing challenges in the global market because of the rampant product piracy.

4. NK Leadership Shakeup

[Anchor Lead]

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un made an appearance in mid-October after a six-week absence from public view. Observers are taking note of Choe Ryong-hae's return to the central political scene as well, and say he may have reclaimed his position as the second most powerful man in North Korea.

[Pkg]

Workers' Party Secretary Choe Ryong-hae smiles broadly as he accompanies North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on an inspection of the recently remodeled May First Stadium. Reporting on Kim's entourage, North Korean news outlets listed Choe ahead of Director of the North Korean People's Army General Political Bureau Hwang Pyong-so, and even Premier Pak Pong-ju. In coverage of a ceremony to mark the completion of the remodeling project, the North Korean media introduced Choe as a member on the Workers' Party Central Committee Political Bureau Presidium.

[Soundbite] Choe Ryong-hae (Member, NK Workers party Central Committee): "We will hold a ceremony to mark the completion of the May First Stadium renovation."

The Political Bureau Presidium is the top decision-making body of the Workers' Party. Choe Ryong-hae is the only member aside from Kim Jong-un and Kim Yong-nam. Choe appeared to be close to the North Korean leader on several occasions recently. He was spotted aboard a ship with Kim and sitting on a sofa directly next to the North Korean leader. Choe Ryong-hae was once believed to have been replaced by Hwang Pyong-so, one of the three top North Korean officials who visited South Korea on October fourth. However, recent signs suggest that Choe has regained his political post as the second most powerful man in North Korea.

[Soundbite] Jeong Seong-jang (Sejong Institute) : "A son of a former anti-Japanese partisan fighter, Choe Ryong-hae has helped Kim Jong-un to inherit power and seize control of the military. He is currently one of Kim's closest aides."

Signs of a reshuffle have also been noticed in North Korea's military, namely a change in the order in which People’s Armed Forces Minister Hyon Yong-chol and Army General Ri Yong-gil are introduced.

5. Medical Tourism

[Anchor Lead]

An exhibition on Korean medical tourism has opened in the United Arab Emirates to publicize Korea's advanced medical technologies and promote medical tourism. Take a look.

[Pkg]

Abu Dhabi is the capital of the United Arab Emirates, one of the largest oil producing nations in the Middle East. Korean doctors provide free consultations on health care to local patients. Many people in the Middle East suffer from geriatric diseases, such as diabetes and metabolic syndrome, because of the lack of exercise due to the hot climate. But their interest in advanced medical technologies is high because they can afford high-quality health care thanks to their nation's oil revenues.

[Soundbite] Humaid Al Hammadi (Chairman, Korea-Arab Friendship Society) : "Korean medical prowess has two fetures: reasonable price and cutting-edge technology."

This exhibition showcasing Korean medical technologies brought together 13 Korean hospitals and seven medical tourism companies. Last year, some 1,100 patients from the UAE visited Korea to receive health care services, three times the number compared to the previous year. Each spent an average of over 16,000 U.S. dollars.

[Soundbite] Lee Jae-sung (Official, Korea Tourism Organization) : "Locals are receiving a lot of information about Korean medical services. Many of them are looking forward to visiting Korea as medical tourists."

The United Arab Emirates has emerged as a high added-value medical tourism market estimated at 8.5 billion dollars. The Middle Eastern nation holds big promises for Korea's medical industry.

6. Work & Academics

[Anchor Lead]

Cooperative programs between schools and businesses are mutually beneficial because students can get jobs early while employers can find good workers easily. Here is a good example of academic-industrial cooperation. Let's take a look.

[Pkg]

A drone equipped with a camera flies into the sky. Earlier drones for filming require two people for operation: one to fly the drone itself and another to handle the camera. However, this newly dev
eloped drone automatically films a target at pre-determined coordinates, so that only one person is needed to operate it. College students developed the drone in cooperation with a small business. The developers landed jobs even before graduation.

[Soundbite] Kim Wan-min (Korea Polytechnic University) : "Because we know what's happening in the field, I could say yes when asked if I had experience managing a server."

A system to circulate air using waste heat, a new type of 3D printer and a simulation device are also results of academic-industrial cooperation. Most of the students participating in the projects had little difficulty obtaining jobs. Approximately 2,000 female college students had a chance to tour some 100 companies across the country and gain hands-on industrial experience. The program was intended to help them learn directly from the field before entering the job market.

[Soundbite] Yoon Sang-jick (Minister of Trade, Industry and Energy) : "It is an occasion for students and young people to dispel their misunderstandings about small, middle-sized companies and get jobs."

Despite the tight labor market, these students have succeeded in finding jobs not with bloated resumes, but with their experience in the field.

7. Forest Healing

[Anchor Lead]

The phytoncide or anions released by trees are said to calm the mind and boost your immunity. Forest healing, or walking in the woods to cure what ails you, has become the latest health trend in Korea.

[Pkg]

Soaring cypress trees have formed an enormous forest. Taking a stroll through the forest and feeling the gentle breeze clears the mind.

[Soundbite] Chu Eun-hye (Second Grader) : "It makes me feel really good. My anger is gone."

This 8-year-old girl couldn't sleep at night because of her atopic dermatitis. But her rash has noticeably lessened ever since she took part in the forest healing program.

[Soundbite] Lee Eun-seo & Jang Haeng-sun (Participants, Healing Forest Program): "Her skin would get very red and itchy, but now it's become much better."

These people stretching in the forest are cancer patients. With their weakened immune systems, which are suppressed by cancer treatments, they had limited options. But now, they come here to calm their minds and bodies.

[Soundbite] Han Yeong-taek (Participant, Forest Healing Program): "I feel happy. I meditate and my mind automatically calms down."

This woman in her 60s, suffering from depression after five years of fighting cancer, has regained her self-confidence.

[Soundbite] Hwang Oi-seok (Participant, Forest Healing Program): "My depression went away now that I'm happier. I want to keep doing this."

There are several forest healing programs around the country that help people overcome various illnesses through exercise and meditation in forests.

[Soundbite] Choi Hyo-jeong (Forest Healing Instructor) : "The program is meant to discard bad things from the body and take in good things from the forest. It calms down the mind and body, and boosts immunity."

Previously regarded only as a place for relaxation, forests are evolving into a place for healing as well.

8. Musical Market

[Anchor Lead]

Musicals are hot in Korea right now. The market for musical productions has grown to over 284 million U.S. dollars, but the industry is detecting signs of crisis stemming from chronic structural problems.

[Pkg]

This musical production was presented in Seoul last summer. It didn't do as well as expected and the cast and staff members have not been paid.

[Soundbite] Lee Bong-geun (Musical Actor): "More than 70% of my wage is overdue. I haven't been paid for months now, and my credit cards have been suspended."

Such financial problems were caused by the excessive number of musicals for a limited market, and soaring fees for top stars.

[Soundbite] Musical Producer (Voice Modified) : "There are too many productions and too many big names. Many large productions have not actually done well."

For years now losses from failed musicals were made up for with money made from other productions. To make matters worse, investors, who should bear financial losses together with producers, often make outrageous demands.

[Soundbite] Musical Producer (Voice Modified) : "They demand outright that their principals be preserved. They want their principals plus interest."

The musical industry believes the solution lies in attracting more investment, but investors are discouraged by a market structure that prevents even an accurate sales assessment.

[Soundbite] Park Min-seon (CJ E&M Live Entertainment Business Unit) : "Investments are made only when accurate statistics about revenue and annual market growth are available."

The Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism is looking for ways to disclose industry data on the integrated computer network for the performing arts sector, which was set up to boost investment and benefits for consumers.

9. Unique Gifts

[Anchor Lead]

Picking out presents can be tricky, and more special gifts tend to be pricey. So today we have a lowdown on super unique gifts. Here are some tips.

[Pkg]

This small, cozy doll making studio in Seoul's Seongbuk district looks no different than from any other at first glance. But here, we hear that one of a kind dolls can be found.

[Soundbite] Yun Eun-yeong (Doll Maker): "I'm making a one of a kind doll in this world. There are many ready-made stuffed dolls but what we do different here is we make customized dolls if clients send us a drawing or an image."

Once the studio receives a character image, they begin the design. The design is revised again and again to reflect the client's opinion. The custom made doll is finally complete! It's the spitting image of the print character. At this home in Yongin city, the children are busily preparing a gift for their dad. A necktie design is finally complete.

[Soundbite] "I think it will be nice on him."

Putting in a custom made gift order is simple. Take a picture of the image you want and just send it to the company. The image then arrives at this tie manufacturer in Seongnam city. All the pictures on the wall were used to make a tie for Dad. How in the world did they think of using a child's drawing for product design?

[Soundbite] Gwon Geum-yeong (President, Tie Manufacturer) : "I figured a family with a child will most likely have some kind of child's drawings lying around. So I thought of making a tie print from children's drawing."

Customer opinions are reflected every step of the way: in deciding the cloth material, color, and design patterns for the necktie. Revisions are made continuously to perfectly satisfy the client's preference. This tie is based on a child's drawing of their dad's face. The fish drawing now makes for two ties.

[Soundbite] "The clients are mothers in their 30-40s. Some request orders to create memories for their kids or to encourage their husbands with a nice gift."

This special gift will be a lasting memory for not only dad but the whole family. On this university campus in Seoul a campus couple is deep in discussion.

[Soundbite] Nam Seung-ju (University Student) : "We're putting together a design to include a couple photo print on our phone case. This personalized one of a kind phone case will be a wonderful gift to each other."

They visited the firm to observe the manufacturing process. People can log onto their homepage, post a photo or drawing, and then select the type of mobile phone case and color of their choice. Production begins as soon as the order is in. A phone case wrapped in film that has the print design goes into a printing machine for about 11 minutes. Whether it's a personally designed tie or a phone case, any custom made gift makes a unique and heartfelt gesture. Your extra effort is sure to impress your loved ones.
  • “Golden Time”
    • 입력 2014-10-30 14:06:52
    • 수정2014-10-30 15:28:04
    News Today
[Anchor Lead]

President Park Geun-hye's administrative policy speech at the National Assembly focused on the economy. She said that now is the last "golden time" to improve the economy and vowed to do her best even if it would result in a financial deficit. She also urged parliament to process the public pension reform bill within this year.

[Pkg]

President Park Geun-hye is the first Korean president in the constitutional history to give administrative policy speeches for two consecutive years. In her recent speech she focused on the economic recovery. Park said she expanded the 2015 budget by 20 trillion won, or approximately 19 billion U.S. dollars, to produce tangible results of her three-year economic innovation plan, even if that would result in a financial deficit.

[Soundbite] Park geun-hye (President) : "It's the last golden time to revive the economy, which is standing at a crossroads between recovery and stagnation."

The president said she has earmarked 7.8 billion dollars to promoting creative economy, 17.8 billion dollars to R&D investment, and around 109 billion dollars to welfare. The welfare budget surpassed 30 percent of the nation's entire budget for the first time. Park added that she has increased the public safety budget by 17.9 percent to reach 13.8 billion dollars. The president then urged the parliament yet again, to process the public pension reform bill by the end of this year.

[Soundbite] "We must take this seriously and do our best not to hand down debts to both our nation and future generations, and prevent the national pension system from going bankruptcy."

The president also vowed to eradicate corruption in the national defense and military equipment industries because it undermines national security. Park stressed she would boost the domestic demand by promoting corporate investment through regulatory reforms and prevent bad regulations from taking root. The opposition party criticized the president's speech for its failure to address the issues of operational wartime command transfer and the Sewol ferry disaster. some 60 members of Sewol ferry victims, amid tears, asked the president to meet with them at the entrance of the National Assembly building.

2. Sewol Disaster

[Anchor Lead]

This Saturday will mark the 200th day since the sinking of the Sewol ferry. However, the truth behind the maritime disaster remains elusive, and the special law to get to the bottom of it still hasn’t been passed.

[Pkg]

Citizens sing a song to console the spirits of the Sewol ferry victims and the families they left behind. Although time has passed, the bereaved families remain in as much pain as they felt 200 days ago when their loved ones suddenly died. Their wounds have grown deeper during their fight for the legislation of a special Sewol law on the street and at the National Assembly.

[Soundbite] Jeon In-sook (Mother of Late Im Kyung-bin) : "As a parent, I hope that other parents won't have to go through this heartbreaking, debilitating pain."

A theatrical play depicts the bereaved families' desperate search for the truth behind the accident, and the frustrations they face due to misunderstandings about them and the special Sewol law. The Sewol families appealed repeatedly to the nation to join forces for the legislation of an effective special law.

[Soundbite] Jeon Myung-sun (Head of Sewol Families' Association) : "We will never give up until this special law is enacted and the nation becomes safer."

Lit by candles, the memorial altar was filled with the warmth of visitors. Participants pledged never to forget the tragedy, and to work to make the country a safer place.

3. Counterfeit Headaches

[Anchor Lead]

Counterfeit Chinese products are causing a headache for Korean manufacturers. Even fake auto parts disguised as Korean-made are being exported worldwide.

[Pkg]

This auto parts company in China has a secret door that leads to a large warehouse. There are piles of auto parts in there, from radiator grilles to oil filters. Korean automakers' logos are attached to them, but they were all made illegally
in China.

[Soundbite] (Chinese Police) : "This is a counterfeit Korean brand. There's no such product that was developed in China."

About ten firms producing fake auto parts are caught each month. But the sale of counterfeits shows no signs of abating. What's more, they're even exported overseas.

[Soundbite] Yoo Myung-chul (Vice President, China Branch of Hyundai Mobis) : "Our branches in Europe and, especially, in North America crack down on fake products imported from China."

Famous Korean apparel brands are in high demand at this large shopping mall. All these T-shirts at the store are
fake.

[Soundbite] "Is this an authentic product? I don't know."

Fake clothes that are sold here are also smuggled to Korea.

[Soundbite] Won Sang-yeon (President, China Branch of Black Yak) : "All the brands are having a hard time because of counterfeits.

This product says in Korean that it's banana-flavored milk. However, it's really a Chinese product disguised as one made in Korea. Last year, this company posted 28 million U.S. dollars in sales revenue in China, but this year the figure plunged 40 percent because of these fake products. Almost all popular products are immediately counterfeited in China. Korean companies are facing increasing challenges in the global market because of the rampant product piracy.

4. NK Leadership Shakeup

[Anchor Lead]

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un made an appearance in mid-October after a six-week absence from public view. Observers are taking note of Choe Ryong-hae's return to the central political scene as well, and say he may have reclaimed his position as the second most powerful man in North Korea.

[Pkg]

Workers' Party Secretary Choe Ryong-hae smiles broadly as he accompanies North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on an inspection of the recently remodeled May First Stadium. Reporting on Kim's entourage, North Korean news outlets listed Choe ahead of Director of the North Korean People's Army General Political Bureau Hwang Pyong-so, and even Premier Pak Pong-ju. In coverage of a ceremony to mark the completion of the remodeling project, the North Korean media introduced Choe as a member on the Workers' Party Central Committee Political Bureau Presidium.

[Soundbite] Choe Ryong-hae (Member, NK Workers party Central Committee): "We will hold a ceremony to mark the completion of the May First Stadium renovation."

The Political Bureau Presidium is the top decision-making body of the Workers' Party. Choe Ryong-hae is the only member aside from Kim Jong-un and Kim Yong-nam. Choe appeared to be close to the North Korean leader on several occasions recently. He was spotted aboard a ship with Kim and sitting on a sofa directly next to the North Korean leader. Choe Ryong-hae was once believed to have been replaced by Hwang Pyong-so, one of the three top North Korean officials who visited South Korea on October fourth. However, recent signs suggest that Choe has regained his political post as the second most powerful man in North Korea.

[Soundbite] Jeong Seong-jang (Sejong Institute) : "A son of a former anti-Japanese partisan fighter, Choe Ryong-hae has helped Kim Jong-un to inherit power and seize control of the military. He is currently one of Kim's closest aides."

Signs of a reshuffle have also been noticed in North Korea's military, namely a change in the order in which People’s Armed Forces Minister Hyon Yong-chol and Army General Ri Yong-gil are introduced.

5. Medical Tourism

[Anchor Lead]

An exhibition on Korean medical tourism has opened in the United Arab Emirates to publicize Korea's advanced medical technologies and promote medical tourism. Take a look.

[Pkg]

Abu Dhabi is the capital of the United Arab Emirates, one of the largest oil producing nations in the Middle East. Korean doctors provide free consultations on health care to local patients. Many people in the Middle East suffer from geriatric diseases, such as diabetes and metabolic syndrome, because of the lack of exercise due to the hot climate. But their interest in advanced medical technologies is high because they can afford high-quality health care thanks to their nation's oil revenues.

[Soundbite] Humaid Al Hammadi (Chairman, Korea-Arab Friendship Society) : "Korean medical prowess has two fetures: reasonable price and cutting-edge technology."

This exhibition showcasing Korean medical technologies brought together 13 Korean hospitals and seven medical tourism companies. Last year, some 1,100 patients from the UAE visited Korea to receive health care services, three times the number compared to the previous year. Each spent an average of over 16,000 U.S. dollars.

[Soundbite] Lee Jae-sung (Official, Korea Tourism Organization) : "Locals are receiving a lot of information about Korean medical services. Many of them are looking forward to visiting Korea as medical tourists."

The United Arab Emirates has emerged as a high added-value medical tourism market estimated at 8.5 billion dollars. The Middle Eastern nation holds big promises for Korea's medical industry.

6. Work & Academics

[Anchor Lead]

Cooperative programs between schools and businesses are mutually beneficial because students can get jobs early while employers can find good workers easily. Here is a good example of academic-industrial cooperation. Let's take a look.

[Pkg]

A drone equipped with a camera flies into the sky. Earlier drones for filming require two people for operation: one to fly the drone itself and another to handle the camera. However, this newly dev
eloped drone automatically films a target at pre-determined coordinates, so that only one person is needed to operate it. College students developed the drone in cooperation with a small business. The developers landed jobs even before graduation.

[Soundbite] Kim Wan-min (Korea Polytechnic University) : "Because we know what's happening in the field, I could say yes when asked if I had experience managing a server."

A system to circulate air using waste heat, a new type of 3D printer and a simulation device are also results of academic-industrial cooperation. Most of the students participating in the projects had little difficulty obtaining jobs. Approximately 2,000 female college students had a chance to tour some 100 companies across the country and gain hands-on industrial experience. The program was intended to help them learn directly from the field before entering the job market.

[Soundbite] Yoon Sang-jick (Minister of Trade, Industry and Energy) : "It is an occasion for students and young people to dispel their misunderstandings about small, middle-sized companies and get jobs."

Despite the tight labor market, these students have succeeded in finding jobs not with bloated resumes, but with their experience in the field.

7. Forest Healing

[Anchor Lead]

The phytoncide or anions released by trees are said to calm the mind and boost your immunity. Forest healing, or walking in the woods to cure what ails you, has become the latest health trend in Korea.

[Pkg]

Soaring cypress trees have formed an enormous forest. Taking a stroll through the forest and feeling the gentle breeze clears the mind.

[Soundbite] Chu Eun-hye (Second Grader) : "It makes me feel really good. My anger is gone."

This 8-year-old girl couldn't sleep at night because of her atopic dermatitis. But her rash has noticeably lessened ever since she took part in the forest healing program.

[Soundbite] Lee Eun-seo & Jang Haeng-sun (Participants, Healing Forest Program): "Her skin would get very red and itchy, but now it's become much better."

These people stretching in the forest are cancer patients. With their weakened immune systems, which are suppressed by cancer treatments, they had limited options. But now, they come here to calm their minds and bodies.

[Soundbite] Han Yeong-taek (Participant, Forest Healing Program): "I feel happy. I meditate and my mind automatically calms down."

This woman in her 60s, suffering from depression after five years of fighting cancer, has regained her self-confidence.

[Soundbite] Hwang Oi-seok (Participant, Forest Healing Program): "My depression went away now that I'm happier. I want to keep doing this."

There are several forest healing programs around the country that help people overcome various illnesses through exercise and meditation in forests.

[Soundbite] Choi Hyo-jeong (Forest Healing Instructor) : "The program is meant to discard bad things from the body and take in good things from the forest. It calms down the mind and body, and boosts immunity."

Previously regarded only as a place for relaxation, forests are evolving into a place for healing as well.

8. Musical Market

[Anchor Lead]

Musicals are hot in Korea right now. The market for musical productions has grown to over 284 million U.S. dollars, but the industry is detecting signs of crisis stemming from chronic structural problems.

[Pkg]

This musical production was presented in Seoul last summer. It didn't do as well as expected and the cast and staff members have not been paid.

[Soundbite] Lee Bong-geun (Musical Actor): "More than 70% of my wage is overdue. I haven't been paid for months now, and my credit cards have been suspended."

Such financial problems were caused by the excessive number of musicals for a limited market, and soaring fees for top stars.

[Soundbite] Musical Producer (Voice Modified) : "There are too many productions and too many big names. Many large productions have not actually done well."

For years now losses from failed musicals were made up for with money made from other productions. To make matters worse, investors, who should bear financial losses together with producers, often make outrageous demands.

[Soundbite] Musical Producer (Voice Modified) : "They demand outright that their principals be preserved. They want their principals plus interest."

The musical industry believes the solution lies in attracting more investment, but investors are discouraged by a market structure that prevents even an accurate sales assessment.

[Soundbite] Park Min-seon (CJ E&M Live Entertainment Business Unit) : "Investments are made only when accurate statistics about revenue and annual market growth are available."

The Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism is looking for ways to disclose industry data on the integrated computer network for the performing arts sector, which was set up to boost investment and benefits for consumers.

9. Unique Gifts

[Anchor Lead]

Picking out presents can be tricky, and more special gifts tend to be pricey. So today we have a lowdown on super unique gifts. Here are some tips.

[Pkg]

This small, cozy doll making studio in Seoul's Seongbuk district looks no different than from any other at first glance. But here, we hear that one of a kind dolls can be found.

[Soundbite] Yun Eun-yeong (Doll Maker): "I'm making a one of a kind doll in this world. There are many ready-made stuffed dolls but what we do different here is we make customized dolls if clients send us a drawing or an image."

Once the studio receives a character image, they begin the design. The design is revised again and again to reflect the client's opinion. The custom made doll is finally complete! It's the spitting image of the print character. At this home in Yongin city, the children are busily preparing a gift for their dad. A necktie design is finally complete.

[Soundbite] "I think it will be nice on him."

Putting in a custom made gift order is simple. Take a picture of the image you want and just send it to the company. The image then arrives at this tie manufacturer in Seongnam city. All the pictures on the wall were used to make a tie for Dad. How in the world did they think of using a child's drawing for product design?

[Soundbite] Gwon Geum-yeong (President, Tie Manufacturer) : "I figured a family with a child will most likely have some kind of child's drawings lying around. So I thought of making a tie print from children's drawing."

Customer opinions are reflected every step of the way: in deciding the cloth material, color, and design patterns for the necktie. Revisions are made continuously to perfectly satisfy the client's preference. This tie is based on a child's drawing of their dad's face. The fish drawing now makes for two ties.

[Soundbite] "The clients are mothers in their 30-40s. Some request orders to create memories for their kids or to encourage their husbands with a nice gift."

This special gift will be a lasting memory for not only dad but the whole family. On this university campus in Seoul a campus couple is deep in discussion.

[Soundbite] Nam Seung-ju (University Student) : "We're putting together a design to include a couple photo print on our phone case. This personalized one of a kind phone case will be a wonderful gift to each other."

They visited the firm to observe the manufacturing process. People can log onto their homepage, post a photo or drawing, and then select the type of mobile phone case and color of their choice. Production begins as soon as the order is in. A phone case wrapped in film that has the print design goes into a printing machine for about 11 minutes. Whether it's a personally designed tie or a phone case, any custom made gift makes a unique and heartfelt gesture. Your extra effort is sure to impress your loved ones.
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