Seoul declares the “coexistence between Seoul and other provinces” together with 29 local governments in recognition of the necessity for special measures to address the polarization and imbalance between Seoul and other regions. To this end, the city has announced a comprehensive plan for the coexistence between Seoul and other provinces and has plans to invest KRW 240.6 billion to implement 36 projects by 2022.
The three keywords are people, information, and goods. Since the inauguration of Mayor Park, the collaboration for the exchange of goods has been largely expanded through the establishment of the I‧Market‧U store, the public meal service for the win-win relationship between the city and farming villages, the public dormitory, and the market for farmers. Therefore, the paradigm must be changed so that people, information, and goods can be exchanged more effectively. As a result, the first medium- and long-term master plan was formulated to systemize the existing projects and expand its influence.
For the exchanges of human resources, Seoul will focus on the employment of the youth and their entrepreneurship. The city will encourage young people to move to other regions to find new opportunities and revitalize the regions. Support for those who want to go back to the farm, which has been mainly focused on educational programs, will evolve into an “on-spot stay” through which participants can live in farming villages and learn about the villages’ lives.
To share information, the city will operate a “travelling innovation road,” a program to distribute innovative technologies and policies concentrated in Seoul, through which Seoul’s government officials and experts will form a team to visit other regions and offer consulting services. In addition, visiting performances and exhibition exchanges will be expanded for regions with low accessibility to culture and art.
For the exchange of goods, the Farming Republic (tentative name), a comprehensive platform for promotion, sales, and experience related to urban agriculture, will open in 2021 in Magok. Following the opening of the I·Market·U store as the springboard for offline promotion and sales of agricultural products and specialty products from other provinces, an online platform will be opened by the end of this year.
The I·Market·U store is located in Anguk-dong, Jongno-gu (New Anguk Building, 39, Yulgok-ro), where visitors can encounter various regions in a variety of ways. It is filled with unique and healthy agricultural products and specialty products from various regions, as well as a diverse array of information, such as the regions’ festivals, tourist resources, and cultural contents.
As the foothold for a win-win relationship between Seoul and other provinces, economic vitalization of farming and fishing villages, and information sharing related to healthy foods, the I·Market·U store is a platform for win-win exchanges and a cooperation network where foods from throughout the country, various information on tourism and festivals, excellent agro-fishery products, and specialty products are available.