This blog may contain not-so-strong languages and slightly strong ecchi pictures. Please proceed with caution.

Sunday, 20 December 2015

KorEconomics 101 (한국경제학개론), Part XXV: The Merger of Hana Bank and KEB into KEB Hana Bank

Ye Olde Korea Exchange Bank (KEB Hana Bank Main Branch, 1st Business Division)
South Korea's top financial regulator on August 19th 2015 gave its final nod to a merger between Hana Financial Group Inc.'s flagship bank units -- Hana Bank and the Korea Exchange Bank (KEB), paving the way for the creation of the country's largest lender by assets. The integrated bank, named KEB Hana Bank, is scheduled to be launched in September upon the approval of the Financial Services Commission (FSC).

The Hana Bank-KEB merger has been a long-cherished desire of Hana Financial, the third-biggest banking group, since it acquired the KEB from U.S. buyout fund Lone Star in 2012. It had promised to run KEB as an independent entity for five years, but pushed for the merger, citing a fast-changing trend in the industry.

Despite strong protests against the move from KEB's labor union, the banking group filed a petition with the FSC for the preliminary approval in January, but soon withdrew it as a Seoul court upheld the KEB union's demand to stop the merger process. The FSC had stressed that labor-management agreement for the merger is a prerequisite for the integration.

An appellate court ruled in favor of Hana Financial in June, however, to pave the way for the company to resume the talks with the labor union. As Hana Financial gained consent from the union last month, the financial regulator became supportive of the merger and accelerated the review process to give the final approval in August 2015.

KEB Hana Bank Main Branch, 2nd Business Division at Hana Bank Building 
Upon officially capping the KEB-Hana merger, the new entity rose to become the nation’s largest lender, with assets of 298.8 trillion won ($254.8 billion). Ham Young-joo, the first president and CEO of KEB Hana Bank, stressed on strong performance in sales. He said the banking scene was going through substantial changes, such as the advent of account switch services and individual savings account services. 

“No top-class bank has weak earnings,” Ham said in the press conference held in the former KEB headquarters in central Seoul, following the launch ceremony. 

In order to secure a larger pool of customers amid the current low-interest tide, the former KEB labor union leader vowed stronger sales based on combining the comparative advantages of KEB and Hana Bank. 

Ham said the bank must maximize synergy out of the former Hana Bank’s excellence in asset management and the former KEB’s global and investment banking. This requires strong chemistry between the officials of former KEB and Hana Bank employees, he added. In addition, Ham vowed to launch training sessions to make all KEB Hana Bank officials professional asset managers. 

Ham also said the bank would offer improved package deals that bundled the financial services of its affiliates, such as card issuance, securities, capital, insurance and savings bank. In upcoming October, Hana Financial Group will launch “Hana Members” that can be used to pay loan interest. The CEO also vowed to strengthen risk management, diversification of portfolios and contributions to the community. 

Ham said, “A bike that does not advance is doomed to fall, and so is (a bank) that adheres to the old way ― This is why change and innovation cannot be more appreciated at this moment.”

The launch came 14 months after Hana Financial Group chairman and chief executive Kim Jung-tai announced the merger plan on July 3. After seven months of intense negotiations between the group and the KEB labor union, the KEB Hana Bank won the official merger approval from the Financial Services Commission on August 19th. 

Sunday, 6 December 2015

Koihime Musou Girls and Korean Clans, Part XXXVIII: Ha (하/河)

Ha (하/河), sometimes romanized Hah is a common Korean Surname which means 'stream or river' in Sino-Korean Language, similar to Chinese Pinyin . Based on 2000 Korean Republic Census which is provided by Statistics Korea (KOSTAT), there were 209,756 people in 65,965 families who bear the surname of Ha, making it the 34th most common name in Korean Republic. Ironically, this surname is different to interrogative Ha (何) but shares the same Hangul and Chinese Pinyin notations of 하 and Hé respectively.

According to the Great Genealogy of JinYang Ha Clan (진양하씨대동보/JinYang Ha-ssi Daedongbo), the clan traced its origins back to the Samhan Period or also known as Proto-Three Kingdoms in Korea. There are fifteen clans which are associated with the surname of Ha such as JinYang (Nowadays Jinju), Ganghwa, AnEum, Jeonju, Gangneung, Gyeongju, Hadong, Changnyeong, Miryang, Cheongju, Daejeon, DanGye, Nampyeong, Eunjin and Haman. However, the origins of three clans - JinYang, Ganghwa and AnEum are still unknown.

The 2000 South Korean census counted 192,869 members in 60,705 families of Jinju-JinYang Ha Clan (진주-진양 하씨/晋州-晋陽河氏), which is the most dominant among Ha clans. Their ancestral seat is located at the present-day Jinju City, Southern Gyeongsang Province. There are three progenitors of this clan which are Ha Gong-jin (하공진/河拱辰), Ha Jin (하진/河珍) and Ha Seong (하성/河成). With these three progenitors of Jinju-JinYang Ha Clan, this clan is divided into three smaller branches which are Sirang Branch (시랑공파/侍郞公波), Sajik Branch (사직공파/司直公波) and DanGye Branch (단계공파/丹溪公波) respectively.

Jinju-JinYang Ha clansmen played their vital role in the founding of Joseon Dynasty along with General Yi Seong-gye who later become King Taejo, deposing King GongYang - the Final King of Goryeo Dynasty in 1392. Ha Ryun (하륜/河崙) was the First Class Officer who responsible in the founding of Joseon Dynasty along with Jo Jun and King Taejo Yi Seong-gye. On the other hand, Ha Wi-ji (하위지/河緯地) was one of the Six Martyred Ministers (사육신/死六臣/Sayukshin) who loyal to Young King Danjong and opposed King Sejo who lead a coup to dethrone his young nephew. 

Friday, 4 December 2015

President Park Geun-hye's Most Cardinal Sins that you must KNOW.

I admit it. The woman who destined to be the First Woman President of Korean Republic has hampered South Koreans in general. Why should I say THIS? I'm hoping for a woman can drive Republic of Korea to progress and prosper but my hope... the Korean People's hope has been shattered into pieces. In this column, I will write about President Park Geun-hye's Most Cardinal Sins that you must know. Let's count her sins.

First of all, Park had been often criticized for being the "daughter of a dictator Park Chung-hee" and for not actively supporting the Lee administration by supporters of Lee Myung-bak. A national-level poll conducted in July 2012 by a conservative newspaper reported that 59.2% of participants responded they did not believe Park was a "daughter of a dictator" while 35.5% agreed with the characterization.

During a recent interview with the Cheongju Broadcasting station CJB, Park commented regarding her stance that her father's May 16 coup was a "revolution to save the country" by stating, 
"I don't think it's the place of politicians to be fighting over whether the events of Teachers' Day Coup in 1961 were a 'coup d'etat' or a 'revolution'." 

In a July 2012 survey, 49.9% of respondents answered that they disagreed with Park's assessment that her father's 1961 coup was "unavoidable, the best possible choice, and an advisable decision", as opposed to 37.2% that agreed.

Next, Park has faced much scrutiny over an educational foundation, Jeongsoo Scholarship Foundation, formerly known as Buil (in reference to the stock it controls in the newspaper "Busan Ilbo"), which her father, and later, she headed. Its original owners claimed in court they were forced to turn it over to her father.

A Saenuri Party assemblyman Nam Gyeong-pil, the 34th Governor of Gyeonggi Province criticized the Park-centered nature of the party, regarding its preparation for the 2012 presidential election, and stated, "If we keep seeing the same situation where Park Geun-hye gives a press conference before a general meeting of lawmakers is held, and what she says then gets decided on as the party's position, then the public is going to think democracy has disappeared from the party."

Furthermore, some have said Park's behavior in the lead-up to 2012 presidential election was a mixture of trend-following and corner-cutting—a stark contrast with the vehement insistence on principle that she showed when she opposed a revision of the plan for a multifunctional administrative city in Sejong City. For instance, Yim Tae-hee, another presidential candidate of the party, pointed to Park's voting down of a motion to arrest Chung Doo-un, a law maker implicated with bribery related to saving banks. Another candidate, Ahn Sang-soo - former mayor of Incheon Metropole, accused Park of "saying one thing yesterday and another today".

Park fired Yoon Chang-jung, a Blue House spokesman who was alleged by Washington police as committing sexual assault against a young woman hired as an intern at the South Korean Embassy in Washington during President Park's first visit to the United States. Park has been criticized for picking the wrong people for senior government posts. The sexual assault, or sexual harassment in question, consisted of groping the intern, and later calling her up to his room and answering the door either naked or in underwear (sources vary); those events occurred on May 7. On May 8, 2013 the intern reported those events to the American police. Yoon escaped to Seoul after alleged assault. Kwak Sang-do, Senior Secretary to the President for Civil Affairs, said the order for Yoon to return “didn’t conflict with any South Korean or US laws.” and "Yoon’s return from the US was a policy decision by the Blue House, and because he was only under indictment, it was not criminal flight from justice for him to return to South Korea."

3 women lawmakers of the Democratic Party in South Korea condemned Yoon for having returned to Korea in a rush to avoid a U.S. police investigation into his alleged sexual assault and criticized the Blue House for trying to cover up the Yoon's scandal. The Democratic Party has demanded the resignation of a number of Blue House officials. It has also called for a more throughout investigation. Due to those allegations and demands, Ms. Park’s senior presidential press secretary and Mr. Yoon’s immediate supervisor, Lee Nam-ki, who is said to have encouraged Yoon to return to Korea as soon as possible to avoid being arrested by the US law enforcement, has declared he is willing to resign. On 10 May, Democratic Party said the Washington scandal was a “foreseeable tragedy” because of Park’s refusal to heed her critics.

Just a week before the presidential election date, the opposing party has alleged that the public servants from National Intelligence Service (NIS) have organized to promote Park's election campaign by way of posting articles favorable to Park and slanderous to the opposing candidates online. This political behavior by public servants is strictly prohibited by Korean Constitution. To prove their allegation, the opposing Democratic Party, along with the police and Central Election Assistance Commission, swooped in the house where the alleged agent of NIS has resided. From there, the 29-year-old female agent, later known as Kim Ha-young, who was running an illegal online election campaign operation such as spreading slanderous postings about the opposing candidate had locked herself in. These are the malicious comments posted by NIS Agents:
  • [Former President Roh Moo-hyun] must be a martyr, who committed a suicide after taking bribes.
  • We should not elect someone who is mentally unstable as our leader.
  • President Roh was full of scandals, his legacy consists of political dichotomy, the anti-USA attitude, pro-North Korea attitude.
  • President Roh's suicide is nothing but a explosion of anger at himself as he was blaming his people for taking bribes and subsequent government prosecution.
  • Roh committed so much crime looking back. he should have lived a better life. Why do you regret now that you are dead? Commies, treat them better while they are still alive.

The police could not force to enter the house and the standoff lasted for three days, which provoked a tense political standoff. The opposition accused the intelligence service of blocking an investigation. Park and her party accused the opposition of harassing the woman. Park even said the standoff of the self lock-in was a violation against a female right in the presidential candidate debate that took place three days before the election.

Later that night of the presidential debate, Kim Yong-pan, then the chief of Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency, publicly announced there was no evidence of illegal online postings from the collected laptop of the female agent. This announcement, which took place three days before the election, was believed to have significantly affected the outcome of the presidential election according to the opposing party. After months of probe into the alleged election meddling, the prosecution concluded in mid-June 2013 that Won Sei-hoon, then NIS chief who headed the intelligence agency for around four years under former President Lee Myung-bak, ordered agents to conduct online smear campaign against opposition presidential candidates. The special investigation drew a conclusion that the agents systemically intervened in domestic politics by writing thousands of postings on politics in cyberspace through hundreds of different user IDs. Kim Yong-pan, then chief of the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency (SMPA), was prosecuted without physical detention on charges of abusing his authority to hamper police investigation into the case. CCTV conversation between the computer analysts who was analyzing the laptop at police revealed that the police already knew there were illegal online postings against the opposing party's candidates, but the chief of SMPA publicly announced otherwise, which indicates intentional meddling into the presidential election.

Their effort has involved tipping a rumor to a major conservative media, Chosun Ilbo, about extramarital child of the Chae Dong-wook, former Prosecutor General, who has approved the prosecution of Won Se-hoon and Kim Yong-pan, which eventually led to his resignation. Yoon Suk-ryul, the director of special investigation team, which was leading the probe into the election meddling, was fired and returned to his original position, head of Yeoju branch Supreme Prosecutors Office. The investigation of his team has further revealed that the NIS is suspected of having posted 55,689 messages on Twitter for three months until the presidential election.

Whether or not the election meddling of the NIS by way of online postings or twitters has actually affected the outcome of the presidential election is controversial. However, the false announcement by Kim Yong-pan, then chief of the SMPA, has appeared to do so. Had the police announced honestly, 13.8% of the electorate who voted for Park has answered they would have voted for Moon Jae-In, the first runner-up of the election.

Park is known to rarely hold a press conference with questions and answers. As of January 11, 2015, She held press conferences four times since she took office in February 2013. Among the four press conferences, three of them were public speeches without questions and answers. Even in the remaining press conference, the questions were submitted in advance and she read prepared answers. Consequently, she is labeled as "No communication" (불통/不通/Bultong).

One of the most crucial events during her administration is November 2015 Protest. On November 15, 2015 around 80,000 anti-government protesters clashed with government forces on the streets of Seoul, demanding Park to step down, many of the protesters chanting "Park Geun-hye, step down". The rally was triggered by Park adopting business-friendly labour policies and a decision to require middle and high schools to use only state-issued history textbooks in classes starting in 2017, combined with plans to make labour markets more flexible by giving employers more leeway in dismissing workers. Security forces fired tear gas and sprayed water cannons into the crowd when protesters attempted to break through police barricades.

Meanwhile, South Korean scholars are up in arms about the move, criticizing the government’s intrusion and efforts to impose a conservative narrative that downplays the miseries inflicted by a series of postwar military dictators — including President Park’s father, Park Chung-hee.

The elder Park ruled from 1961 to 1979 and is often credited with launching South Korea’s economic miracle, but widespread political repression and human rights abuses tarnish his record. Since assuming office in 2013, his daughter has been criticized for promoting a rosy version of her father’s despotic rule, one that provokes his victims as well as prodemocracy activists who decry this recidivist rewriting of the praetorian past. The South Korean government claims that the country’s existing crop of textbooks reflect Marxist views and are overly positive toward North Korea.

There more than 500,000 people — including teachers and students — have signed petitions opposing the state textbook, and professors from more than 20 universities and over 800 members of the Korean History Research Association are boycotting Park’s textbook initiative. Protests have erupted in Seoul against the plan and more than 400 civic groups and a parliamentary coalition have voiced their opposition. The president is increasingly isolated and has managed to unite the public against her quest to distort history. In addition, 203 overseas scholars in Korean studies based in North America, Europe, Australia and Israel have signed a letter in support of their colleagues in South Korea, calling on the government to reverse its decision.

My fellow Koreans, it's time to stand up and fight against the atrocities have been made by the daughter of bloody Yushin Dictator! This freaking father staged a military coup on the past, and now the daughter is engineering a coup in distorted history education! Distorted history can decentralize Korean Republic's Stability and ultra nationalism can affect your brain as well! Act now before it's too late!

Thursday, 3 December 2015

Take Fivers (NSFW!): How to Diss the Republic of Korea FOR DUMMIES.

Making a Pledge of Taegeukgi Allegiance in gibberish accent will make the President of ROK become more angry. Wanna try THIS? I hope YOU CAN DO IT. Hehehehehe....