July 2 - South Korea launches new administrative city of Sejong after years of political wrangling. Sarah Charlton reports.
A ceremony in the city of Sejong ushers in the birth of South Korea's new administrative hub. After years of political and legal wrangling, a number of government bodies are set to move to the city. Seventeen government offices and 20 other state agencies will be based in Sejong, bringing with them more than 10,000 employees. SOUNDBITE: SOUTH KOREAN MAYOR OF SEJONG CITY YU HAN-SIK SAYING (Korean): "The birth of Sejong City is the outcome of the whole nation's confidence for the future of our country and it's an historic choice." A number of departments within the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) will be first to relocate in September. The government estimates Sejong's population will grow to 300,000 by 2020. People on the city's streets had mixed feelings about the initiative. SOUNDBITE: 37-YEAR-OLD EOM MI-SOON SAYING (Korean): "They say many central government organisations will move to Sejong City. I want them to keep their promise, but this area is in disorder and the traffic bad. I want to see everything settled systematically." SOUNDBITE: 32-YEAR-OLD KANG KYUNG-HEE SAYING (Korean): "As a resident here, I am very glad that this area is promoted to a special Sejong City. And I see the city developing here. I hope this area becomes a much better city." The Sejong project was initiated by a former leader, saying it would help relieve overcrowding in the capital Seoul. Sarah Charlton, Reuters.