SEOUL, May 20 (Koreabiz Wire) – Foreign ownership of land in South Korea grew slightly last year compared to 2014 amidst increasing Chinese investment in the southern resort island of Jeju, said a government official Friday. In total, some 20.6 million square meters, or 1.1 percent, of Jeju Island is owned by foreigners.
According to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport, the amount of land owned by foreign entities was 228.27 million square meters at the end of 2015, a 9 percent increase from the previous year’s 208.28 million. Foreign investors or companies owned 0.2 percent of the country’s total area, while South Korean expatriates owned the highest percentage of the land owned by foreign entities, accounting for 54.5 percent.
Foreign individuals of non-Korean heritage owned about 4.5 percentage of all the foreign-owned land, while joint ventures owned 33.1 percent, and foreign firms owned 7.6 percent.
In terms of nationality, U.S. individuals or companies owned 117.4 million square meters, while European investors owned about 22.1 million square meters. Japanese and Chinese entities owned 18.7 million square meters and 14.2 million square meters respectively. Chinese ownership took up 44.4 percent of the total, followed by the U.S. with 17.9 percent and Japan with 11.7 percent.
By M.H.Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org)