Jump to content

Large business groups buying land around Pyeongchang


Recommended Posts

22 people, largely affiliated with the Chaebol (family-controlled conglomerates), have snapped up 230 square kilometres of farmland and woods around Pyeongchang since 2000, about the time PC first became interested in the WOG. The price of land has since jumped 10x in value. The Chaebol argue it was bought for farming purposes, but there have been little instances of farming there. Come on Korea, let's do this right.

http://www.koreatime...137_105956.html

When Korea won the bid to host the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang last July, some people worried about various adverse effects. Recent media reports on the buying up of large swathes of land surrounding Olympic sites by some chaebol families and executives show some of those concerns have become a reality.

According to Chaebul.com, a website tracking the activities of tycoons and their family-controlled conglomerates, 22 people, including large shareholders of Lotte and GS Group and former executives of these and other groups, have snapped up 230,000 square meters of farmland and woods around the Olympic venue, about 160 kilometers east of Seoul, since 2000.

It was then the nation jumped into the competition to attract the Winter Olympiad in earnest. The land price has since jumped about 10 times, from 2,500 won to 23,000 won per 3.3 square meters. Officials of the chaebol group say the owners bought the land for farming or to build country homes. Yet Jeong Seon-seop, a representative of the Olympic sites who recently visited it, said he saw few instances of agricultural activity there.

We don’t want to believe the large business groups, most of them official sponsors of the 2018 Olympics, struggled hard to lure the Games to Korea to jack up their property prices, but can hardly avoid some bitter feelings.

One does not need to be a sports expert to know the quadrennial festival of amateur sports has long degenerated into money party of international sports bodies and construction firms. Profitable Olympics are no longer possible. At stake is how to minimize deficits. Some host cities and countries, such as Vancouver in Canada and Nagano in Japan, failed to do so and are still reeling from losses of more than $10 billion. Experts say the deficit will be far larger in PyeongChang given the investment plans of its organizers.

How many countries in the world would spend scores of billion dollars for a two-week festival, whose after-effects will last for decades in the name of huge maintenance costs of a dozen white elephants? Officials here say PyeongChang will be a regional winter sports hub and Korea will once again be able to boost its national brand image. Even if they are right, the cost overwhelms the benefits by too huge a margin. If anything, their wishes will end up as just such. Can you remember Albertville or Lillehammer, two former hosts, and in which countries they are situated?

Lillehammer is the only recent example of an Olympics recording a surplus. The Norwegian city built no permanent facilities or structures, making do with existing rinks and slopes and makeshift buildings. The Norwegians’ motto was to make no one realize it was an Olympic venue one year on. Compare this with the Korean officials’ plan to build and change as much as possible, even destroying one of the nation’s oldest forests.

PyeongChang should be a second Lillehammer, not another Nagano. This is the only way to make the athletics festival a party for local residents, not for builders and speculators.

Edited by Gangwon
Link to comment
Share on other sites

At least Kang Ho-Dong donates his land around Pyeongchang to charity. Good for him. He is one of the biggest names in Korean entertainment, and hopefully this brings awareness to the Korean public. Pyeongchang has the potential to mean so much to the country, and they have 6 years to work at this. They have the chance to make this about the common good.

http://www.koreahera...=20120229001035

......Though transactions for real estate in PyeongChang and its adjacent areas are strictly regulated as agricultural land, almost none of the land possessed by the wealthy outside the area is used for farming, said Jeong Seon-seob, president of Chaebul.com.

“Speculation is something that we should not do. The so-called wealthier and powerful people should follow Kang as an example, and carry out ‘noblesse oblige,’” a netizen said on a bulletin at the web portal Daum.......

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 years later...

According to Chaebul.com, a website tracking the activities of tycoons and their family-controlled conglomerates, 22 people, including large shareholders of Lotte and GS Group and former executives of these and other groups, have snapped up 230,000 square meters of farmland and woods around the Olympic venue, about 160 kilometers east of Seoul, since 2000.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...