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S. Korea Eyes US$10.7 bln in Software Exports in 2011
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South Korea aims to export a record US$10.7 billion worth of software in 2011 as local companies make inroads into the global information technology (IT) service sector, the government said Monday.


   The Ministry of Knowledge Economy said exports could jump 17.1 percent on-year as software companies become more competitive on the international market by offering reliable programs that meet overseas requirements.


   "The forecast growth is due to large conglomerates, such as Samsung SDS, seeking to sell their IT service software in overseas markets compared to focusing on domestic sales in the past," said Jeong Marn-ki, head of the ministry's information technology industry office.


   IT service software, such as operating systems, is currently dominated by global giants like Microsoft and Oracle.


   The official said if all goes according to plan, outbound shipments of IT service software could soar 36 percent to $1.4 billion, with sales of so-called package and embedded software products posting solid gains this year after expanding steadily in the past.


   Jeong said South Korea's software market will grow 8.4 percent vis-a-vis 2010 to reach 41.4 trillion won ($37.1 billion). The increase is far greater than the 4.5 percent growth being forecast for the global software sector as a whole.


   Jeong also said Seoul will spend more than 214 billion won this year to encourage software-related research and development, infrastructure building and training of experts.


   "The amount is significant because Seoul spent just 280 billion won from 2003 through 2010 to assist the software field," he said.


   The official said money will be allocated to help develop next-generation mobile software and programs that can improve energy efficiency and national defense.


   Other areas that will receive support are human-computer interaction, quality improvement and product certification, with 23.2 billion won to be used to train 3,520 IT workers.


   Jeong said because software users demand reliability, more effort will be made to refer locally developed programs to such specialized agencies as Gartner and IDC.


Source: Yonhap News (Feb. 21, 2011)

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