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Looking Back on Korean Economy's Past 60 Years Updated: 2010-12-03 00:00:00 KST

Industrialization and globalization.
These two words best summarize the transformation of the Korean economy over the past 60 years.
Ever since the establishment of the Korean government in 1948, its economy saw miraculous growth in the industrial and service sectors and rapidly integrated into the global economy.
Until early 1960s, Korea received foreign aid of up to 20 percent of its gross domestic product.
But now, it has grown into a small but strong country, ranking 15th globally for GDP and 7th in trade volume.
And to share the story of the nation's development, the government, together with many research centers such as the Korea Development Institute, published a set of books titled "The Korean Economy: Six Decades of Growth and Development."


[Interview : Sakong Il, Chairman
Committee for 60-year History of Korean Economy] "The Korean government has systematically arranged and synthesized research results and data that have been released until now and decided to publish the book two years ago."

It is a well-known fact that policymakers in many emerging countries are paying great attention to the Korean economy in order to learn from the country's experience in achieving vast growth.


[Reporter : Eoh Jin-joo
jjeoh@arirang.co.kr] "KDI says the book will be a valuable source for policymakers both inside and outside the country as it has combined various views on Korea's economic growth in an objective way, and will help them better understand and find solutions on pending economic issues."

The books also include anecdotes and reasons behind the nation's successes and failures that have never been revealed to the public.
It was not an easy process for Korea to join the group of advanced nations.
There were many trials and errors including misallocation of resources, chronic inflation and income inequality.


[Interview : Yim Jong-yong, Deputy Minister
Ministry of Strategy & Finance] "Evaluation of the development and economic growth Korea has achieved may differ among people and time. This is why it is important to leave an objective and accurate record of the past 60 years and hand it down to the next generations."

The Korean economy still faces many issues ahead, such as imbalances among social classes, industrial sectors and regions.
Experts hope that these books will set guidelines for finding answers for these problems and ways to supplement current policies.
Eoh Jin-joo, Arirang News.
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