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  • Inaugural Address by the Mayor of Seoul

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    Inaugural Address by the Mayor of Seoul

    • 1.

      Dear respected fellow citizens of Seoul. Thank you.
      Your grand decision has allowed me to stand before you again today.

      Each of your votes reflect your earnest wishes for the success of the Moon Jae-in administration.
      These votes embody your aspirations for complete peace and a new economic order on the Korean peninsula.
      They are the expression of your support for the administration I have led over the past six years, and your higher expectations for Seoul’s future.

      During the campaign, I asked for an opportunity to complete a ten-year revolution seeking to transform the citizens’ quality of life; and you have given me the honor of being the first mayor to serve Seoul’s citizens for three consecutive terms.
      During this election, I campaigned with the commitment of a field commander. You elected 24 district mayors and 102 councilors from our political party, thereby giving the Democratic Party of Korea an opportunity to change Seoul exactly the way it should be.

      The overwhelming support for our party
      is truly astonishing.
      Yet it is also frightening, too.

      From now on, everything is entirely under the responsibility of the Democratic Party of Korea.
      Based on the wisdom and competence that it has acquired over the years,
      we will put in every effort to fulfill the citizens’ demands
      as our municipal administration devotes itself to reshaping the lives of Seoul’s citizens.

    • 2.

      Dear fellow citizens,

      Over the past six years, Seoul experienced numerous changes.
      “Humankind” that was pushed to the sidelines during the era of development and growth finally stands at the heart of the city’s administration.
      The burden that each individual had to bear alone,
      has now been lightened with the help of Seoul City through a new institutional arrangement.

      Community service centers provide home-based welfare benefits to those who still fall through the safety net. More children are able to attend public daycare centers today.
      Multiple irregular workers have become full-time employees,
      and the supply of public rental housing has eased the citizens’ housing burdens.

      However, we still have a long way to go.
      An incalculable number of people I met on the campaign trail,
      faced a harsh and desperate reality.

      Ever-rising household debt; Shop owners suffering from high rents and credit card fees; The worst youth unemployment in history; Working moms suffering from occupational burnout; Many young people who have given up on love, marriage and childbearing.

      To change the lives of our citizens, we still have many challenges to face.

      In the past, I led a difficult fight to push for policies focusing
      on the improvement of our citizens’ lives,
      despite the opposition of a conservative government.
      Yet, I still regret not having been bolder or not faster.

    • 3.

      Dear fellow citizens,

      The ultimate reform in this era is to end poverty once and for all.
      The greatest task Seoul has to face is resolving the problems that citizens meet in their everyday lives.
      Over the next four years, I will do everything in my power to improve the citizens’ quality of life.

      I will never hesitate, nor will I pause in my devotion to looking after your lives.

      First, I will solve the issue that one million self-employed citizens face, standing at the brink of survival.
      As promised, I will lessen their heavy burden of credit card fees by lowering the rate below 1 percent within the year.
      I will also realize a paid sick leave system and incorporate them into the country’s employment safety net.

      Second, I will solve the high rent issue, our era’s most substantial source of suffering. I will make sure that tragedies such as the one that occurred at the restaurant “Gungjung Jokbal” in Seochon will never happen again.
      I will find solutions to the high rent issue that threatens the survival of citizens living in rental housing as well as those doing business in rental properties.
      Of course, I cannot do it on my own: there must be an institutional support. I will join forces with the central government and the National Assembly to achieve this goal. If not, I will absolutely make it possible in solidarity with all the tenants, the self-employed and people in general.

      Third, I will start working today to find a complete solution to childcare.
      The childcare gap is directly connected with unemployment rates, women’s career disruption, and low birthrates.
      During my term, I will realize a complete public childcare system so that the heartbreaking fate of “Kim Ji-young: Born in 1982” will never be a reality in Seoul again.

      Fourth, I will solve the housing issue which plagues the citizens of Seoul more than anything else.
      I will supply 240,000 public housing units while in office, thereby raising the proportion of public housing in the city to 10% for the first time in South Korea’s history.

      Fifth, I will launch the “Long March for Jobs, Season 2” to improve today’s job market.
      The country’s unemployment is largely due to external and structural elements such as continuously low economic growth and the ongoing Fourth Industrial Revolution. Yet, I am certain that we can mitigate the problem to a considerable extent through our own initiatives.
      I will make practical and realistic efforts
      instead of depending on theories and statistics to create jobs.

    • 4.

      The situation is grave.
      Emergency warnings are signaling the difficulties that ordinary people must face in their everyday life.

      I will take all the emergency measures necessary to help the citizen’s welfare. I will begin by diving into the citizens lives myself.

      To change the citizens’ lives, we must meet citizens in their daily lives, not at the mayor’s desk.
      I will move the mayor’s office to locations that requires the mayor’s influence the most.
      I will start by living among the people of Gangbuk, sharing both the pleasures and pains of life with them.

      I will commute to work and share my daily life with the local residents, to make an accurate diagnosis of their arduous lives.
      I will sympathize with your pain.
      I will lay out alternative solutions.
      I will change the lives of citizens in Seoul.

      Dear fellow citizens of Seoul,

      The city’s decade-long revolution to change the citizens’ lives for the better requires funds and investments. So far, I have reduced the city’s debt by KRW 8 trillion to fill its reserves.
      I will now invest in the improvement of your lives through a bold fiscal expansion policy. I will make the citizens of Seoul thrive even if the city must endure shrinking finances.

      Above all, I will make changes rapidly.
      I will focus on policies that will change your lives for the better in a tangible manner.

    • 5.

      Dear fellow citizens of Seoul,

      I feel a heavy burden on my shoulders as I must fulfill the requests that you have made.
      Nonetheless, I am also thrilled at the idea of completing the decade-long revolution that will Seoul’s citizens’ lives for the better.
      I am proud to have opened an era of social friendship based on community life,
      instead of a lonely individualist society.
      I am now happy to be able to dream of Seoul in the new Northeast Asian era moving toward peace and coexistence.

      As I take my first steps on the untouched path of the third term,
      I promise to do my utmost to fulfill all of my duties faithfully
      and to join hands with you
      to make deeper, broader, and more sustainable changes.

      Let’s begin this exciting, beautiful journey together.
      Great cities are built by great citizens.
      Today again, the citizens remain the mayor in Seoul.

      Thank you.