The government in South Korea was deemed far passive compared with Chinese and Japanese counterparts in responding to the transition to the fourth industrial revolution, a cross-border survey on business leaders showed.
According to a survey conducted by Maeil Business Newspaper together with China’s Global Times and Japan’s The Nikkei on 314 chief executive officers of the three countries, only 57 percent of Korean CEOs were satisfied with the government’s measures backing the transition to industry 4.0 represented by artificial intelligence, big data, and self-driving technologies.
In contrast, 98 percent of Chinese CEOs and 77 percent of Japanese corporate leaders were happy with their government policies and promotions.
Korean CEOs, however, were confident in their technological competitiveness.
Some 88 percent of Korean CEOs expressed confidence in their own efforts in responding to the industrial transition, similar to 87 percent of Chinese leaders and 89 percent of Japanese CEOs.
Korean business leaders’ dissatisfaction with the local government’s support on advancing new technologies comes from heavy regulations, said various experts across industries. The country’s rental van-hailing platform Tada is on the brink of being outlawed, and the proposal to ease communication data related laws has failed to gain legislative approval, raising uncertainties about new technology development.
“Regulatory hurdles have prevented companies from seeking innovation and also have led them to distrust government on policies related to the fourth industrial revolution,” said Lee Kyung-sang, economic research chief at the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Economic confidence in Korea was also the poorest in East Asia. When asked which of the three countries has the brightest economic outlook, Korea came third, with China on the top and Japan following - 69 percent of Chinese CEOs and 85 percent of Japanese CEOs placed Korea at the end in the economic growth outlook.
CEOs have become wary of China’s growth prospects compared to the past. The survey showed that the CEOs were still most concerned about the trade disputes between China and the United States, with more than 70 percent of Japanese CEOs picking it as the greatest threat to their business.
By Jung Wook, Kim Dae-gi, Ko Bo-hyun, Jin Young-hwa, and Cho Jeehyun
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]