[EDITORIALS]Projects need more thoughtWithout a proper plan, local governments are recklessly jumping into a development project to develop a tourism belt along the nation’s south coast, and poor business plans and overlapped investments are resulting in an enormous waste of money. Uri Party Representative Lee Kyung-sook submitted a report on the south coast tourism development project to the National Assembly’s Culture and Tourism Committee. She also criticized the Culture and Tourism Ministry for failing to coordinate local governments’ business plans or conduct proper feasibility studies.
As of now, 64 business projects exist to develop tourism in the region, and 518.8 billion won ($504.9 million) of central government money, 660.9 billion won of local government budgets and nearly 3 trillion won in private investments have been poured into the programs. Due to imprudent business plans, similar facilities are being built at many places and some of the completed facilities have seen almost no visitors due to poor feasibility studies.
Such reckless development projects can also be found in places other than the south coast. So-called J and S projects, business and innovation cities that will encourage companies and public institutions to relocate there are rampant, despite not being based on the central government’s national development plan. Tens of golf courses are planned nationwide, as the entire country stands at the center of development fever. The central government doesn’t even know how many golf courses are planned nationwide or what types of tourist resorts will be built and where.
Balanced development of the country is important and developing tourism industries for income is also urgent. However, the makeshift plans of local governments without a master plan are damaging the nation’s development potential and also damaging the environment. Precious tax money will eventually be wasted.
Each development needs thorough planning and feasibility studies before being started. To build a world-class tourist resort, we need to make the right selection to make full use of money and efforts. Once selected and developed, we should also follow-up the site to ensure the resort does play its role as a tourist attraction.