KOBC Helps National Flag Carriers Overcome Crisis
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KOBC Helps National Flag Carriers Overcome Crisis
Opens ‘Smart Marine Center’ window to give youth an opportunity to navigate a ship

24(Fri), Sep, 2021

Korea Ocean Business Corporation (KOBC) holds a ceremony to open “Smart Marine Center” at Korea Job World in Bundang-gu, Gyeonggi-do, on July 8. (Photo: KOBC)

Korea Ocean Business Corporation (KOBC) has so far provided 6,140.5 billion won in financial support to 87 maritime companies.

Thanks to the financial support, Hyundai Marine Merchant (HMM) has posted an operating profit for the first time in 10 years.

SME enterprises have seen their financial situation improve. KOBC has been credited with playing a part in taking steps to cope with environmentally stringent restrictions, and helping shippers restore management to normal.

KOBC President Kim Yang-soo said, “KOBC has implemented a variety of support policies, including policy financing to help the Korean shipping industry, which has been struggling with difficulties, overcome a crisis and maintain sustainable management since its establishment in 2018.”

“Even though the difficult situation, which is never predicting its future due to the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, the shipping industry and the rank and file of KOBC have made joint efforts, which have contributed to helping national flag-carriers stabilize their management and the Korean shipping industry get back to life.”

Of late, the shipping industry has faced a new and unfamiliar environment, said KOBC President Kim, adding that fluctuations in the shipping market have been expanded due to the protracted pandemic.

The shipping industry is also facing a crisis, caused by international organizations’ strengthening of environment restrictions to address climate change, he said.

The shipping industry badly needs to shift to digital transformation management, such as self-navigating ships, smart ports and blockchain, Kim said.

KOBC plans to ramp up support so the Korean shipping industry can brace for rapid environmental changes in advance, based on its role of buttressing the resurrection of the Korean shipping industry and making a leap forward as a global leader, he said.

First, President Kim said KOBC will continue to provide support so that shipping companies can tide over difficulties caused by the protracted pandemic.

KOBC will expand investments and guarantees so that national flag carriers can restructure their core assets such as ships, port terminals and logistic facilities into a low-cost and high-efficiency one, and implement diverse projects such as a sale and lease back, which is designed to help shippers overcome a temporary liquidity crisis.

Secondly, he said, KOBC will help the Korean shipping industry secure future growth engines. KOBC will offer a variety of financial support programs so that national flag carriers can secure major logistics centers, hinterland logistics sites and carbon neutrality energy infrastructure.

Thirdly, he said, KOBC will support national flag carriers’ management innovation. KOBC will help national flag carriers improve their capability to cope with economic changes and ramp up their risks by scientifically analyzing data of transaction entities participating in the shipping market and providing meaning related information.

Furthermore, KOBC has performed social responsibilities as a public entity: Those efforts include maritime safety, co-prosperity with local communities, human resources development and protection of the environment.

In particular, KOBC has struck sisterhood ties with nearby traditional markets and purchase products to reinvigorate the market.

The corporation also provided IT systems and gadgets such as notebook PCs and desktop PCs worth a combined 15 million won to 21 regional children’s centers with insufficient academic support facilities.

KOBC opened the “Smart Marine Center,” a window to give to youth an opportunity to navigate a ship. Smart Marine Center’s occupational experience hall, located in Korea Job World in Bundang-gu, Gyeonggi-do, offers virtual reality ship navigation experiences.

Korea Job World is a public entity designed to provide to youth information their future courses and occupational experiences, attracting 470,000 visitors annually.

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