The Impact of Globalization on South KGlobalization is the increase in mobility of people and related factors of production across national borders. Globalization allows people to easily share ideas, cultures, financial claims for instance contracts, and fosters international trade (Lee, 2017). The interaction at a global level has facilitated growth and economic development. The advancement in technology and economic development, in turn, has fostered globalization. This essay aims to expound on the impact of globalization by looking into the case of South Korea. The nation has succeeded at taking advantage of globalization as it has realized significant levels of development.
South Korea had a population of 42.5 million people in the 1980s. However, the population has been increasing since that period, and this growth can be attributed to globalization. For example, in 2007, South Korea’s population was 51,446,201. In 1980, the nation had a per capita Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of $2300, which was lower than other developed economies in Asia, such as Japan and Hong Kong. In 2010, South Korea’s per capita GDP reached $30000.
The total GDP has shifted from $88 billion to $1460 billion from the 1980s to 2010. Life expectancy has also increased from 67 years to 81.3 years over the same time frame. Relative and absolute poverty had been reducing in South Korea since the 20th century but increased after the 1990s. However, only 2% of the citizens were affected by absolute poverty at the time. Moreover, 13-16% of the 2% are elderly (Yang, & Greaney, 2017). The levels of relative poverty mainly affect people over the age of 65 years. It is estimated that about 15% of South Koreans live below the poverty line.
South Korea has an effective education system and a skilled and motivated population that has driven the country to economic growth and technological boom. The nation has increased international trade with other countries from Asia, Africa, Europe and America, which has created profitable overseas markets. Since the 1997 Asian financial crisis, South Korea’s economy has become more structurally stable. The nation has a diverse population, but 96% are ethnic Koreans. Yet, following South Korea’s economic growth, the immigrant population has risen to hit the million mark (Sungwon, 2017). The largest groups of immigrants are the Chinese, Vietnamese and Americans.
South Korea has reaped substantial benefits since the Korean war and has been a trading partner of the European Union and the United States of America. South Korea’s rapid economic development has mainly been fostered by globalization. For example, the country is a leading technology hub, which supplies electronic hardware to overseas markets. Through globalization, the nation’s industries have grown significantly, creating job opportunities and improving the overall living standards (Solingen, & Malnight, 2016). Exports make up more than half of South Korea’s economy. Hence, the nation relies on markets beyond its borders. However, the high levels of exports leave the nation sensitive and vulnerable to the economic state of the nations it exports to. Korean culture was heavily affected by the American and European influences after the Korean War. For example, a female president was sworn in, which marked a transition to a more gender-equal society. The interaction with foreigners created a chance for South Koreans to assimilate and adopt new cultures. Korean culture is widely spreading in other nations and is commonly called the Korean Wave. The phenomenon has created a brand for the nation. For instance, Korean pop culture has spread over the globe. The Korean Wave has had significant effects on solidifying the country’s national image and economy to the extent of being used as a diplomatic tool.
South Korea’s national per capita income has almost tripled since the 1990s. This is due to the increase in its productivity over time in a bid to serve the overseas demand. The balance of payments has become favorable for the nation as it is a leading exporter of high-tech products, such as mobile phones, and electronic gadgets. Thus, the nation’s export of income is high in comparison to the amount spent on imports. South Korea’s population density has risen to 508 people per square kilometres. The high population density is due to the increase in population. The population growth rate is associated with changes in the economy and the level of immigration. South Korea has strict immigration policies, but this has not prevented foreigners from settling in the nation and acquiring citizenship. Consequently, the level of cultural diversification has increased. Globalization has also aided in the advancement in technology (Li, Liu, Long, de Jong, & Youn, 2017). For instance, multinationals like General Motors and Tata have established thriving divisions in South Korea.
In conclusion, South Korea has benefited from industrialization and globalization. Due to the increase in foreign investments in the country, the domestic economy has diversified and developed, creating employment and improving the overall economic status. Globalization has helped South Korea’s economy as it has found a profitable overseas market for its products. Globalization has also allowed the country to create a brand via pop culture, which is known internationally as the Korean Wave.
Lee, S. (2017). International trade and within-sector wage inequality: The case of South Korea. Journal of Asian Economics, 48, 38-47.
Li, L., Liu, J., Long, H., de Jong, W., & Youn, Y. C. (2017). Economic globalization, trade and forest transition-the case of nine Asian countries. Forest Policy and Economics, 76, 7-13.
Solingen, E., & Malnight, J. (2016). Globalization, Domestic Politics, and Regionalism. The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Regionalism, 64.
Sungwon, Y. (2017). Globalization and language policy in South Korea. In Language policy, culture, and identity in Asian contexts (pp. 47-64). Routledge.
Yang, Y., & Greaney, T. M. (2017). Economic growth and income inequality in the Asia-Pacific region: A comparative study of China, Japan, South Korea, and the United States. Journal of Asian Economics, 48, 6-22.
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