Pandemonium” is the word you are looking for to describe the present reality in every corner of the world and particularly what Korea is facing today in 2017.

Until when will the unrest we experience every day continue? It does not seem to be feasible to remove uncertainty and regain stability in one year or two.

The global geopolitical environment in particular, already deep in sharp conflicts and confrontation, is being driven toward a crisis. The policy drives by world powers that are pushing forward protectionist measures with the highest priority on their own interests have made it difficult for emerging economies such as Korea to see beyond their noses.

Wielding its key currency status and hegemonic power as weapons, the United States is implementing its fiscal and exchange rate policies to secure its own interests. Nothing comes to mind on what we could do to respond if an exchange-rate war should break out at the global level.

The United States has entered the era of President Donald Trump whose unexpected election win has been followed by a string of hard-to-predict policies and measures. Though long considered as a constant, the United States has now become one of the biggest variables for Korea.

China also continues to be another big variable for Korea. Different levels of risk will be posed to Korea’s diplomacy, security and economy depending on how China will respond to the United States and to what extent. The severity of the potential risk for us is hard to estimate.

Unrest in Europe where the peripheral countries are still under an economic crisis as well as unrest in the Middle East, the powder keg of the world, is casting a shadow over the outlook for the geopolitical future of Korea.

In the meantime, artificial intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT) have been driving structural transformation in the world industry, leading a transition into the digital economy. This transformation has been demanding extensive changes from the manufacturing-oriented Korean economy.

The issues of low birth and population aging in Korea are virtually at a disaster level: The working-age population has actually started to decrease this year. The fact that China, our biggest export market, is mired in low birth and aging population issues will likely weigh heavily on us.

Our energy structure is also a major concern. Our energy system heavily relies on fossil fuels and nuclear energy, which other countries have been putting to an end. The climate change issues on which the world finds it so hard to reach agreement amid sharp conflicts of interests will also have great impact on us.

In this respect, K.E.Y. Platform, MoneyToday’s global conference first held in 2013, plans to present the future three years from now in the form of a detailed scenario and propose specific counterstrategies. The scenario will depict the vision of the future that will unfold right before our eyes in 2020.

To this end, we put our heads together with The Heritage Foundation, one of the most prestigious think tanks in the United States that has been attracting the more attention since the inauguration of President Trump. We also have worked with Sejong Future Strategy Research Forum, a Korean research group, to come up with accurate forecasts and strategies.

Furthermore, we plan to develop Korea’s response strategies with the “K.E.Y. Platform Advisory Panel,” which is made up of 50 advisers including policy leaders who have taken the lead in Korean politics for the past decade as well as potential future policy leaders. Once completed, they will also be presented.

We are ready to take the first step with you to contemplate and explore the roads ahead for the next three years that will determine our future.


Global Scenario for 2020: Forecasting the future three years from now through scenario planning techniques

In order to create an elaborate outlook on the next three years of pandemonium, which will determine the future of Korea, K.E.Y. PLATFORM has produced a scenario that is likely to unfold before our eyes in 2020 using scenario-planning techniques as its core methodology.

Earlier in 2013, the Global Scenario for 2018 was developed using the same methodology and presented at the fist K.E.Y. PLATFORM conference. In this scenario, we presented our forecasts on changes in global dynamics and economic conditions including the recovery of the U.S. economy, a partial failure of Abenomics and the weakening of solidarity among the EU countries as well as transformations in the industrial structure such as the advent of the digital economy.

At the fifth K.E.Y. PLATFORM conference in 2017, an upgraded version of the scenario will be presented: “Global Scenario for 2020.”

To identify developments that are likely to take place over the next three years, we first conducted pre-survey in-depth interviews with 100 experts in various fields in and out of Korea over about six months. This interview was featured in MoneyToday’s New Year Series of Cover Stories in 2017 under the title of “Pandemonium 2020.”

K.E.Y. PLATFORM selected ▲ geopolitical environment ▲ global economy (fiscal and exchange rate policies) ▲ Industrial and population structures, and ▲ energy and climate change as core drivers. In addition to this, 70 core signposts were selected after further in-depth discussions with the experts. Our joint research process with the top American think tank, The Heritage Foundation, has added insights at the global level.

To ensure that we will be able to produce a meaningful and elaborate scenario, K.E.Y. PLATFORM conducted an in-depth survey with 300 global economic and management experts. We asked them questions on 70 signposts, such as: Will a dispute break out between the U.S. and China surrounding the South China Sea? How greatly will the U.S. fiscal deficit expand? How much of human labor will AI replace? How fast will the transition from coal to gas be accelerated? We asked for answers on the likelihood of such a development to take place as well as the extent of its impact.

How have the experts leading the global economy predicted the future three years out? The answer to this question will be presented to you through on-site presentations and an in-depth report at the “K.E.Y. PLATFORM 2017” conference

Korean Heritage Remastering: Upgrading “principles” to ensure sustainable development for Korea

K.E.Y. PLATFORM has developed strategic alternatives as well as specific and elaborate countermeasures based on a scenario that was produced through in-depth interviews with 100 experts in and out of Korea and a survey with 300 global experts.

Countermeasures were developed by the MoneyToday K.E.Y. PLATFORM Advisory Panel, which was newly created this time. We worked with 50 policy experts from the government, political parties, think tanks, survey organizations and law firms to come up with response strategies as well as specific policy and innovative ideas. A comprehensive report on outlooks and counterstrategies will be presented on site at the plenary session of the K.E.Y. PLATFORM conference.

We worked together with Korean and foreign experts to find the foundation of innovation for Korea. In the process, we learned that we were looking outside to find what we were sitting on. We already have great legacies with us. The experts shared and emphasized the opinion that Korea could ride through the waves of a crisis as long as the Koreans abide by the principles embedded in their heritage and implement them promptly and strongly.

K.E.Y. PLATFORM 2017 intends to “remaster” the heritage. Korea has the underlying strength that it takes to achieve democratic advances as well as economic and industrial development at the same time, and it has successfully achieved both. K.E.Y. PLATFORM plans to upgrade the master (original) of this underlying strength to a new level. We will remaster the Korean systems and strategies in a new format that fits the era of the digital economy.

We are paying a big price for having breached the principles in many political and economic fields for the past years. “Sticking to principles” is the spirit of the times again. Indeed, we are living in a world of pandemonium. Nevertheless, the Korean economy should seek to go beyond simply surviving to achieve further development and growth.

We hope that you will be with us at the place where we will seek new principles and implementation methodologies on the basis of our great heritage.