Since the 1980s, South Korea’s
high-tech industry has been
undergoing rapid growth. The
country has maintained its position as one of the pioneers in technological innovation. Home to companies like
Samsung SDI and SK Hynix, the country
is striving to enhance its technological
prowess by constructing industrial clusters that focus on advanced technology.
And among the many clusters in Korea,
the one currently receiving the most spotlight is the Songdo High-Tech Industrial
Cluster in the Incheon Free Economic
The Songdo High-tech Industrial
Cluster is located within the IFEZ and
spans over 3 million square meters. There
are already a handful of businesses that
are doing business here, including domestic conglomerates such as POSCO and
Samsung Biologics. Japanese companies
like Olympus and TOK have moved in as
well. Olympus is currently constructing
K-TEC (Olympus Korea Training &
Education Center), which provides professional training for local medical staff
and houses demonstrations of their new
The cluster’s potential is to be amplified in 2018. Global corporations will be introduced to the area, including 10 businesses specializing in automotive parts and semiconductor inspection equipment. Such investments will no doubt vitalize the cluster and the local economy by bringing in new jobs. In May of 2018, various companies will open their R&D research centers in the area, providing a venue for the development of automotive and semiconductor technology. In addition, Japan’s biggest manufacturer of household products will construct a manufacturing facility and invest more than USD 500 million,
further rejuvenating the regional economy.
In a bid to enhance the competitiveness of this high-tech cluster, a complex specializing in robots will be established. Songdo will provide a platform in which companies focusing on various types of industrial robots may compete, cooperate and collaborate with each other to support the development of this particular sector.
Moreover, educational facilities have also been located within the cluster; the Songdo Science Village and the Incheon Global Campus provide high-quality human capital to businesses. The global campus will soon accommodate about 10,000 students and 10 different schools. Along with the manpower produced in the nearby capital, Seoul, the global campus will regularly provide the industry with plenty of well-educated talented. The industry, education and research centers are expected to accelerate the research and development process.
The cluster also boasts state-of-the-art logistical infrastructure. Located in Incheon, the cluster naturally has full access to one of the best ports and airports in the world. The Incheon International Airport, which is less than an hour away, offers excellent international cargo transport
services made possible due to its world-class flight network. The logistical benefits don’t end there. The Incheon New Port, which has the highest growth rate of all domestic ports (15 percent annual growth), is always ready to accommodate the country’s largest economic zone. Better yet, by 2030 the port will be capable of handling 4.2 million TEU containers per year.
The Songdo High-tech Industrial Cluster is operated under the goal of cultivating a knowledge-based advanced industry. Already the cluster has shown its potential and provided a glimpse of what it is truly capable of. With more investments and knowledge accumulating in the area, it’s just a matter of time until Songdo unleashes its full potential.