Thursday, October 30, 2014

Hanging out at the Koreas' demilitarised zone


Graphic: Rising Tide of Chinese Global Investments


Singapore tops World Bank business ranking for ninth year


"Ease of Doing Business" Ranking

1. Singapore
6. Norway
2. New Zealand
7. USA
3. Hong Kong
8. UK
4. Denmark
9. Finland
5. South Korea
10. Australia

Korea’s Business Environment Ranks 5th in the World

30 OCTOBER 2014
The Ministry of Strategy and Finance announced on Oct. 29 that Korea ranked fifth this year on the World Bank Doing Business Index, reaching a new high and joining the top 10 for four consecutive years.
Korea has climbed from 19th in 2009 and 16th in 2010, to eighth in 2011 and 2012 and seventh in 2013. This year, it is second to no G20 country, and second only to New Zealand and Denmark among OECD members.
Singapore beat them all, followed by New Zealand, Hong Kong, and Denmark. Korea was followed by Norway, the United States, and Great Britain. Canada, Japan, China, and Russia took the 16th, 29th, 90th, and 62nd spots.
- See more at:

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

North Korea: Defectors and Their Skeptics

North Korea’s Charm Offensive: New Cards, Same Player


Japan Can’t Ratify the TPP This Year


Protest Art in 1950s Japan: The Forgotten Reportage Painters


Afghanistan Promises China Help with 'Militants'

Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) with Afghan PresidentAshraf Ghani Ahmadzai attend a signing ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing October 28, 2014.
(Reuters) - Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani has pledged to help China fight Islamist militants, a senior Chinese official said on Tuesday, after Ghani met President Xi Jinping in Beijing on his first visit abroad since his September inauguration.

China 'to Overtake Korea in Most Industries in 4 Years'


South Korea’s Export Weakness Puzzles Economists


New Apartment in downtown Pyongyang North Korea Costs US$100,000

Pyongyang Changjon Street.jpg

A recently-released photo of the newest, hottest hot spot in Pyongyang - Changjon Street.
A recently-released photo of the newest, hottest hot spot in Pyongyang - Changjon Street.
29 OCTOBER 2014
The Worker’s Party of Korea, the North Korea’s state-owned newspaper, posted a picture of a fancy night view of Pyongyang Changjon Street on the second page of their Sept. 29th edition. Changjon Street, construction of which was completed in June 2012, is a new apartment complex is known as “North Korean New Town.”
As investment in real estate is active in North Korea, a new apartment in Pyongyang is said to be traded at US$100,000. In addition, loans with usurious annual interest rates of 20 percent have become generalized as private loans develop
- See more at:

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Afghanistan: Out with NATO, in with China?

Afghanistan: Out with NATO, in with China? - Yahoo News
China will not send any troops to replace the departing NATO forces, local and foreign analysts agree. But Beijing, which offered Mr. Ghani hundreds of millions in aid Tuesday, is gearing up to play a leading role in Afghanistan’s future – fearful that if its neighbor descends into chaos, more trouble will spread into China’s restless, predominantly Muslim province of Xinjiang.

Monday, October 27, 2014

My taste and some photos of the delicious persimmons in Youngdong South Korea

I got here just in time for the persimmons harvest in  Youngdong South Korea.

I was also in Youngdong for the grape harvest and festival.
But the persimmon trees are everywhere. 

The trees look as if they are covered with orange Christmas ornaments while dropping their leaves. 

Everywhere you look some one is picking persimmons.
Some to be sold at market, others for home use.

Many are peeled then hung up to dry outside to be eaten at a later date.
The frost enhances their taste.

Youngdong and the surrounding area is one of the most beautiful places in South Korea.

The people are some of the nicest and welcoming you would ever want to meet.
Their sense of sharing is something i have never seen before. It is a custom that just comes naturally to them.

 I love it here.

Tao Dao Man