On Tuesday, the Ministry of Knowledge Economy announced that five EU-based companies have pledged to invest $510 million in Korea. These pledges were made in Berlin during an event that was attended by the Minister of Knowledge Economy Choi Joong-kyung.
One of the companies has pledged $25 million, while another that is involved in renewable energy has pledged $80 million.
Another company, the Germany-based photovoltaics equipment maker Avancis GmbH has pledged $353 million for investments in Korea. The other two, a German industrial pump maker Wilo SE and an auto parts maker Brose Fahrzeugteile GmbH have pledged $30 million and $23 million respectively.
Choi said in a statement that, “Securing investment from companies in the renewable energy, and parts and materials industries will help strengthen the country’s industrial competitiveness.”
Ups and Downs
This exciting news comes at a time when investments in Korea from the EU had been depressed. Investments in Korea that were made by European countries during the first quarter of the year were down 48.5% compared to the same period last year. In contrast, U.S. investments in Korea have been steadily rising, with a 10 fold increase between the first quarter of this and last year.
With the recently ratified Korea-EU free trade agreement, Korea now plans to send a delegation to Europe in June to facilitate continued support and investment. The ministry has also appointed the former German ambassador to Korea, Michael Geier, to be a promotion ambassador for investing in Korea.