Collaboration and Cohesion Goal Among Govt. Agencies, Depts.
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Collaboration and Cohesion Goal Among Govt. Agencies, Depts.
MOTIE to get tough with large-sized firms’ unfair practices of unilaterally undercutting their subcontractors’ unit prices

30(Tue), Apr, 2013

President Park Geun-hye receives a policy briefing from the Ministry of Trade, 

Industry and Energy, the Small and Medium Business Administration (SMBA), 

and the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO)at Cheong Wa Dae on March 25.

The government will devote itself to solving the difficulties facing businesses and industries and will nurture small and medium enterprises (SMEs) as of one of the key national policy agendas.

President Park Geun-hye said at a policy briefing of the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE), the Small and Medium Business Administration (SMBA), and the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO) on March 25, “The government needs to exhaust all its resources to solve the difficulties facing businesses through creative collaboration.”

“The MOTIE and the SMBA are at the front lines where policies converge with businesses,” she said. Park went on to say that problems facing businesses can be solved only if all departments related to the industry, trade, and energy sectors cooperate on top of eliminating partitions. In particular, she called for fast cohesion between industry and trade, which have been consolidated following the recent reorganization of government.

“The government’s reorganization will result in the strengthening of the SMBA’s roles, reflecting the new government’s willingness to foster SMEs as a driving force behind transforming the national economy into a more creative one.” She urged the participating government officials to do their best to meet Korean SMEs’ expectations over a shift in the government policy paradigm to give more weight to SMEs, particularly transferring the function of nurturing SMEs from the ministry to the SMBA with the goal of building an ecosystem ranging from startups to up-and-coming mid-sized firms. She noted that it is important to set up new policies to put them in conformity with reality, but it’s more essential to put the existing policies into practice at the front of business and make them take effect.

As to the roles of the KIPO, she said building and protecting a sound knowledge ecosystem is not only a key task in an era of a “creative economy,” in which creativity leads to economic profits, but also a precondition for the success of the creative economy. “Conflicts surrounding intellectual properties have been mounting around the world, such as the design patent lawsuit between Apple and Samsung Electronics,” said Park, adding that some companies tend not to give a full reward to subcontractors’ or employees’ intellectual properties or even rip them off in the worst cases. She called for offering institutional support to build and protect a sound intellectual property ecosystem. 

And lastly, Park urged the participants to take steps to cope with public grievances in the energy sector. The nation has come from strength to strength thanks to a solid foundation for a stable supply of energy. In recent years, public confidence toward government policies has been eroding due to worries over electricity supply and misgivings over the safety of nuclear power units. Park said, “Public trust is very important in establishing and implementing energy policies.” 

Minister of Trade, Industry and Energy Yoon Sang-jick presented his ministry’s 2013 plan to President Park, calling for role sharing in which the ministry is responsible for preventing large-sized companies’ anomalous activities while the SMBA is charged with fostering SMEs. 

In a policy briefing together with the SMBA, the ministry said in the first half of this year the ministry will launch a probe into large-sized companies’ unfair practice of unilaterally undercutting subcontractors’ unit prices. The ministry plans to establish steps to eliminate such unfair practices by September.

The ministry said it intends to give additional points in calculating the Win-Win Index to companies that allow their cooperative partners to supply their products to other consumer companies. The National Commission on Corporate Partnership (NCCP) announces the index on 74 large-sized companies, including Samsung Electronics and Hyundai Motor Co., based on measured guidelines on shared growth each year. 

The ministry plans to unveil a plan to nurture new convergence industries in four arenas so as to create good quality jobs. Those industries are the safety-related sector covering disaster surveillance and life-saving robots; the health sector, including smart medical equipment; smart home appliances; and the cultural sector, covering performances using three-dimensional technology and fashion. 

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