Thursday, January 24, 2008

Don't Look Up

Sometimes I wonder if living in Korea is going to shorten my lifespan. Even if I can survive the mountain bus journeys, you never really know what dangers are lurking out there.

There's a new building going up near us, again, and walking by it requires squeezing through a narrow pathway. It never really inspired confidence but it took me a while before I looked up and appreciated the way scaffolding was being passed around in high places above the pedestrians' heads. The sign at least does tell you - if you needed a hint - that there is work going on and they'll do their best to be safe...

The global stock markets certainly haven't been dull since the start of the year, and Korea's market has not escaped the carnage. Since coming to Korea I've never ceased to be amazed by the amount of construction work happening, with new buildings rapidly rising up and often old buildings being pulled down to make way for them. Even if the politicians have had to talk down the country's growth rate from 7% to 4.5% of late, as economic indicators go, it tells you that some people at least are making money here.

We're teetering on the brink of recession and Korea won't escape from this unscathed, so perhaps the skyline isn't going to be changing quite so much as it has been for the foreseeable future. But at least it might make the local streets a bit safer.

Korean tags: 건물, 경제

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