The Seoul Metropolitan Government posted USD 1.81 billion of reported foreign direct investment (FDI) into the City in this year’s first half, up 116 percent year on year.
The gains stem from an increase of investments from all regions, namely, the Americas, Europe and Asia. Also the growth in service sector investment, which accounts for more than 90 percent of all foreign direct investment, spearheaded the overall growth in FDI, according to the City Government.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government says FDI figures continued to increase despite the earthquake in Japan and financial crises in the U.S. and Europe, due to stable expansion of the Korean economy and constant efforts to improve the investment environment.
Industrial sectors, and particularly FDI in the service sector, which accounts for over 90 percent of all investment into the City, amounted to USD 1.69 billion, up 117.5 percent from USD 777 million, posted in the same period of last year.
By region, FDI from the Americas jumped 371.6 percent year on year to hit USD 736 million while Asia gained 41.9 percent to reach USD 576 million and Europe gained 125.8 percent to total USD 736 million, reflecting that figures from all three regions increased.
By investment type, additional investment by existing foreign investment firms has continued to grow this year again after last year to account for 63.5 percent of the total FDI volume. New investment and long-term loans took up 35.8 percent and 0.7 percent, respectively. Notably, Greenfield investment jumped 189.5 percent to hit USD 1.184 billion while M&A type investment gained 45.7 percent to reach USD 625 million.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government will seek to attract regional headquarters and R&D centers of global enterprises and expand incentives in order to continuously increase FDI. The City Government also plans to conduct investor road-shows in Korea and elsewhere, catering to respective industries and countries.
Additionally, the City Government plans to make onsite visits to more than 7,500 foreign invested companies to discover the difficulties in investment and employment they face and to step up efforts to improve and remove unjustifiable regulations in collaboration with related organizations, including the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency.