Dunkin’ Donuts jumps on Asia’s coffee craze

Dunkin’ Donuts jumps on Asia’s coffee craze

SEOUL — It is a Saturday night and one of the unlikeliest hot spots in the city is packed. More than 100 people are sprawled at tables, sipping, talking, munching. Young women are dressed as if at a nightclub. Some have been here for hours.

A concert? A dinner party? Nope. This, believe it or not, is Dunkin’ Donuts — one that is unlike almost any other in the world.

This scene, in a city long synonymous with tea houses, is a glimpse of a coffee gold rush, one in which the Canton-based coffee and doughnut company has patiently and methodically set out to transform the food and social culture in the Far East.

Coffee boom in S. Korea

It is working well enough that South Korea is now home to more than 900 Dunkin’ Donuts, nearly as many as there are in the chain’s home state, making it the company’s largest international market. Starbucks is not far behind. Both companies consider South Korea a warm-up for an even bigger play: China. Continue reading


Change in Korean Adoption Law Followed by More Abandoned Babies

Domestic Adoption Is Still Uncommon in South Korea, Wall Street Journal, Updated October 7, 2013, 9:53 a.m. ET



South Korea amended its adoption laws last August in hopes of reducing unregistered overseas adoptions of its children. WSJ Digital Network’s Kurt Achin reports on one unintended consequence: a sharp rise in child abandonment.

SEOUL—When South Korea amended its adoption law in August of last year, it was intended to reduce unregistered adoptions of children overseas.

A year later, it appears to have accomplished that with an unintended side effect: a drastic increase in the number of babies abandoned anonymously by their mothers.


ReutersSouth Korean pastor Lee Jong-rak adjusts the blanket around an abandoned two-week-old baby boy in a “baby box” at Joosarang church in Seoul on Sept. 18, 2012.

In the first seven months of this year, 152 infants were abandoned in South Korea, up from 62 in the same period of 2012, according to Ministry of Health and Welfare data. The increase has been attributed by some to the new Special Adoption Law, which stipulates that infants can’t be put up for adoption without their births being registered with the government. It also requires that mothers remain with their newborns for a minimum of seven days before putting them up for adoption. Continue reading

What Park pledged to do as president

What Park pledged to do as president, Korea Herald, Published : 2012-12-19 23:44

Peninsular trust-building process

At the core of Park’s policy toward North Korea is the Korean Peninsular Trust-Building Process, which is aimed at entrenching durable peace and laying the groundwork for reunification.

The process is based on a flexible and balanced approach. It shuns a dichotomist attitude of taking either appeasement or a hard-line stance, which she says has been unhelpful in bringing positive change in the communist state.

Under the process, Seoul is to resume dialogue with Pyongyang, increase humanitarian support and try to carry out agreements forged between the two Koreas and between the North and international community.

The strategy stems from her policy of “trustpolitik,” a term she introduced last year in her contribution to the U.S. bimonthly journal Foreign Affairs. Continue reading

Korea’s newly elected president

Our Madam President-elect, The Korea Times, 2012-12-20 00:28

Park Geun-hye becomes South Korea’s first female president, the guardian, Wednesday 19 December 2012 11.13 EST

Park Geun-hye wins South Korea’s presidential election, The Washington Post, Wednesday, December 19, 1:29 PM

Daughter of Dictator Wins South Korea Presidency, New York Times, December 19, 2012

Profile: South Korean President-elect Park Geun-hye, BBC, 19 December 2012

Park Geun-hye projected to be South Korea’s first female president, Los Angeles Times, December 19, 2012, 5:05 a.m.