Why this is important to Wisconsin businesses: Opportunities for Wisconsin companies

The South Korean government is actively pursuing the “new energy” industry as a core innovation project for the nation’s economic growth. The government plans to reduce greenhouse gas output by 5,500 tons and to grow the new energy industry to be a $100 billion market by 2030. The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy launched the Energy Future Strategy Committee and announced in July that a total of $42 billion will be invested in the new energy industry by 2020. The government will focus mainly on growing eight areas: electric automobiles, the megawatt market, energy storage systems, energy independent islands, eco-friendly energy towns, zero-energy buildings, utilization of heat from wastewater from thermal power plants, and solar panel rental services.

In the area of the electric automobile, the government will expand infrastructure to invigorate the market by permitting private companies to provide battery charging and battery leasing services with the aim of increasing the number of electric cars in use to 200,000 by 2020. Also, the government will put emphasis on applying new and renewable energy to residential areas and transforming them to energy-efficient environments by establishing eco-friendly energy towns, zero-energy buildings and energy independent islands.

The government will also invest $30 billion in the establishment of 13 million kilowatt-sized (the equivalent of 26 thermal power plants) renewable energy power stations by 2020. Additionally, new and renewable energy projects totaling 2.3 gigawatts, including solar and offshore wind power, will be undertaken from 2017 on.

As the government encourages private sector participation in the industry by easing regulations and aggressive investment, many companies are seeing great potential in the new and renewable energy industry, and business opportunities are expected to extend beyond the boundaries of the industry.