Having just visited Korea, I can tell you, this article by Hank Hyena is right on the money. Korea is a major rising star. It is wired, educated, and those folks work hard:
In 1960, SK was a famished pauper with a per capita annual income of $100. Since then, “The Miracle on the Han River” has boasted the world’s most explosive economy; 8.7% annual growth from 1960-1990 transformed it from agricultural hick into techno-metro sophisticate. SK is #1 in digital technology, #1 in shipbuilding, it constructed the world’s tallest building (Burj Khalifa in Dubai), the largest shopping center (Shisegae Centrum City), the biggest boat (cruise ship “Oasis of the Seas”), it houses Samsung, LG Electronics, Hyundai-Kia, Cyworld, POSCO, etc. How’d SK do it? Relentless education, long work hours (2,390 hours per person annually, 34% more than Americans) and brave creativity — they own the 3rd largest number of patents and they’re the “Most Innovative Country” according to Global Innovation Index. Meanwhile, though North Korea is one of the globe’s poorest nations — its citizens average 4 inches shorter in height than southerners due to malnutrition — it does have mineral wealth. Goldman-Sachs believes a unified Korean economy could rival Japan’s by mid-century.
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