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SBD Global/April 9, 2013/Facilities

Seoul Considers Selling Financially Stricken Olympic Stadium To Chinese Investors

The Seoul, South Korea Olympic Stadium, the venue for the 1988 Summer Olympics, "has suffered a five-year deficit" of 52.3B Korean won ($46.5M), "forcing the city's government to consider selling it to Chinese investors to redevelop the venue," according to Swan Qiu of the WANT CHINA TIMES. The proposed move "triggered complaints from a ruling party legislator, saying such a move would be badly received by the public." Seoul officials responded by saying that "it is a purely economic issue and there is no need to invoke nationalist sentiment." The Seoul-based Korea Joongang Ilbo reported this week that the city's government "is considering selling land in the sports complex to Chinese investors." An official said that "the plan has faced strong opposition from athletics circles, and it will not be easy to put the plan into action without offending local sensibilities." Seoul Metropolitan Council member Kim Yong-seok said, "The city government must provide a specific development plan before they decide to sell off the areas to foreigners" (WANT CHINA TIMES, 4/6).
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