PM speeds up new plan for Sejong
The government’s alternative road map for the Sejong administrative capital relocation project is expected to gain speed as Prime Minister Chung Un-chan said yesterday he will consider advancing the date for unveiling details of alternatives for the 22 trillion won ($19 billion) project set for completion in 2011.
“We had originally planned to come up with the finalized alternatives by the end of January next year but will consider advancing the schedule to minimize social conflict,” Chung said in a meeting with high-ranking officials from the Blue House and government ministries and lawmakers from both ruling and opposition parties yesterday morning.
The participants of the meeting reportedly said in unison that the revised layout for the city should be released by the end of this year. Grand National Party leader Chung Mong-joon agreed that persistent controversies could cause conflict across the nation.
After meeting with President Lee Myung-bak on Nov. 4 on the controversial project initiated by the former Roh Moo-hyun administration, Chung said the new road map will be completed by January - an advancement of one month. Under the initial plan, the project was designed as an administrative hub in South Chungcheong but the Lee administration has argued the plan should be revised to develop a self-sufficient city with medical and scientific research centers.
Park Geun-hye, the GNP’s former chairwoman, has consistently made clear her unwillingness to cooperate with the party and the administration’s move to revise the plan.
At the meeting yesterday, Chung unveiled the names of 16 experts from private sectors to become members of the committee that will be working on the revision. Of them, there are six from Chungcheong, three from Gyeongsang, three from Jeolla and four from other regions.
By Seo Ji-eun [firstname.lastname@example.org]