Empire Of The Ring - LightNovelsOnl.com
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Youngho was now at a private meeting with Kim Roman, the congressman and the chairman of Koryoin Organization.
"You'd get the full support if you had told the president. Why are you trying to get me involved in this?"
"If you'd get involved in this Chairman, other Koryoins would also partic.i.p.ate in this. I want to help the Koryoin society in Kazakhstan. I feel sorry that I haven't been able to help Koryoins more before."
"Oh, please don't say that. Do you know how much Koryoins are proud of the Arirang Autonomous State? You've achieved something that no one could have ever achieved."
"The autonomous state is only the name. It's just a private land named as an autonomous state."
"The president trusts you to a great extent. He even trusted you with the Maritime Police's job. It's not the national military force, but it is basically the same in its essence."
Kim Roman flattered Youngho for his achievement in the 70 years of Koryoin history in Kazakhstan. He also complimented Youngho for helping Koryoins in need with his welfare foundation. Youngho could not help to blush.
It would be great if a Korean company succeeded in Kazakhstan but even if it did not, it was still beneficial to the Koryoin society since many jobs were opened for them as interpreters for Korean employees. Not to mention, they were very proud of Korean companies.
"Chairman Kim. Electric power shortage in Kazakhstan is quite great. I didn't know about this before, but S Corporation's construction department has a lot of experience in constructing electricity generation facilities. I'll be the middleman. Why don't you ask the company to invest in the electricity department?"
"The east and west are now planning to build thermal power plant facilities or gas turbine power generation systems. It'd be great if S Corporation would invest in those projects. The shortage of electricity had been great distress everywhere."
Because of Kazakhstan's big land ma.s.s, electricity would be wasted while transmitting. The total length of transmission cable lines in Kazakhstan was about 460,000 kilometers long.
The economy was developing at a fast pace every year but the electricity issue was a huge obstacle in its development. This was why the Arirang Autonomous State used solar panels to supply power. It was not efficient to get electricity from nearby cities. Since there was plenty of sunlight and Youngho had a partners.h.i.+p with K Electronics which made solar panels; using solar panels was the best option for the state. The panels installed in an area of 82 acres and the roofs of each house, factory, and warehouse buildings generated surplus electricity for the state.
Youngho was not sure what S Corporation was up to but if it could scratch the itching part of the Kazakh government, the rest of the work would be a smooth sail.
Since the government was intimidated by China's business expansion in Kazakhstan through railroad and different road construction projects, Youngho convinced the government to partner with K Electronics to establish a solar panel factory in Almaty, following the autonomous state's precedent. Youngho was certain about this project since he knew that the most economical way to provide electricity in remote places was using solar energy generation.
He was highly motivated to become the middleman for Kazakhstan's overall development since the autonomous state would not be able to survive when Kazakhstan fell.
Kim Roman the congressman and Youngho cooperated together to attract S Corporation's investment in the government's electric power industry.
Kim Roman took a role of explaining the benefits of establis.h.i.+ng a foreign electricity factory to convince the Kazakh government, and Youngho worked on collecting similar successful foreign cases to support his presentation.
The two wanted to convince the government that it would be controllable by the government since it would be built in Kazakhstan, despite the power plant being owned by a foreign company. It was because the government officials; who had experienced the pain of borrowing electricity from Russia in the early days of independence, had a perception that the electric power industry should be a state-run enterprise.
If foreign-invested power plants were pa.s.sive in producing electricity or raised their electricity bills, the government would be helpless. However, it was too much to build a power plant with the current state finances.
Hoping to learn about the perspective of S Corporation, Youngho wanted to hear the deputy department head, Kim Sung-ho's opinion.
"Deputy head Kim, what do you think is Kazakhstan's problem?"
"Well, there are too many that I'm not sure what to mention first. There must be things that I've been missing out too since the country had been developing quickly. Also, who am I to say when I've only lived here for several days?"
"What I'm asking is not about the overall society of Kazakhstan, but the industry part of it."
Kim Sung-ho pondered upon Youngho's question for a while.
Youngho was sure that a deputy department head of S Corporation would have studied different statistical data of Kazakhstan. He must know how to strategically approach toward Kazakhstan's development.
"It's a shame that the government is selling raw materials without processing them. I also think that the insignificant number of infrastructures is a huge obstacle for the country's economic growth."
"What kind of infrastructure do you think is necessary at this moment?"
"The distribution system including roads and railroads is at a beginning stage and the information part of the society is substandard. Moreover, the shortage of electricity is serious. It's sad that the government is not utilizing its limitless oil crude and gas to produce electricity."
'Whoa, is that so?'
"I guess what you're saying is that investing in the electrical power industry will be profitable. I should make an investment right away. Isn't selling electricity and gaining underground resources are killing two birds with one stone?"
At this point, Kim Sung-ho seemed to realize something.
He was enlightened by his conversation with Youngho.
After talking with Youngho, Kim Sung-ho moved fast. Having spent two days in S Corporation's branch office with the two followers, he came to see Youngho.
"Mr. Lee. Do you think the Kazakh government will maintain to mimic free economic system?"
"Isn't a major American oil company and other foreign global companies' involvement in Kazakhstan's different businesses proof of that?"
He was worried that the dictator-like government might nationalize all of the industries inside the country in the future. Since he did not know about Kazakhstan well yet, it was natural for him to have some doubts.
"Do you know how much I invested in for the autonomous state?"
"Frankly, I have no idea."
"Building a single house costs you about 50 million Korean won. Can you guess how much I spent on building 1,200 houses? Have you seen a person who invested this much for an uncertain future?"
It was a rough estimate of what Youngho had paid for building houses.
"I see what you're saying."
Being a bright person, he knew what Youngho was implying.
"I don't know if my a.s.surance will be of help, but if the company wants it, I'll write a letter of a.s.surance."
If things went bad and S Corporation gave up the business here, Youngho could buy out the electricity company from it instead.
"If you would provide some sort of safeguard rules for the investment, the president of the construction department and the CEO of S Corporation will come to discuss the business."
The investor should figure out the advantages and disadvantages of his investment. If someone could guarantee his safe ride, anyone would be an investor. Anyway, Kim Sung-ho was highly intrigued by Youngho's appeal to invest in Kazakhstan's project.
"Mr. Lee, you have a talent to make me happy. You set them up first and gave the credit to Koryoins as you stepped back. That was a great move."
The president complimented that Youngho had given Koryoins the credit for S Corporation's investment in the government's electric power industry project. Youngho had made Kim Roman the congressman in charge of this brokerage.
"I'm glad you're satisfied, Mr. President."
"You know, several Korean companies made bold investments in the early days of our independence and that attracted countries to make investments too. I was worried since the oil price had dropped lately, but this investment will act as oil to make a bigger fire in our economy."
As it was announced that the electric power industry of the nation would be partially privatized, each emba.s.sy of different nations based in Kazakhstan began to grasp the truth. This was because it was tantamount to putting the national strategic industry on a free-for-compet.i.tion basis.
"It was something I had to do because I want Kazakhstan to flourish. I came here to live until I die. If you could encourage foreign companies, even U.S. companies will want to join the project."
As the word was spread that a global Korean corporation was about to join the project, the U.S. emba.s.sy had moved to inquire about it. Agent Smith in Astana had called promptly to ask if Youngho and Jong-il were related to this project, which meant that the emba.s.sy was interested.
"Oh, is that true?"
"An American friend in Germany inquired about this in details. He asked me if this could be a secure business."
He drank up Zeynep Wine at that point.
"I said that I'd guarantee it. I told him that I wouldn't have built a thousand houses in the autonomous state in the first place if I didn't see any profit."
The old president clapped as he got excited about Youngho's response.
"That's right. Who would make such investment if our Kazakhstan is not safe enough? And then what happened?"
He looked like a child expecting to hear more fun, yet interesting story.
The project quickly attracted many investors.
The U.S., French, and German companies also showed their interest in partic.i.p.ating in the project. The Kazakh government was happy to hear the news. Other companies compet.i.tively joined the project because S Corporation which was said to be exceptionally tricky in partnering with foreign countries was involving in the project.
Only France, which belatedly said to conduct market research, was excluded and the three countries were selected as power generation facility operators. Two Korean companies, as well as U.S. and German companies, signed an agreement to build a total of five power plants in Kazakhstan. Another Korean company was H Corporation. The government gave it an advantage since H Corporation had already invested in the government's road construction project.
S Corporation agreed to build a gas turbine power plant in the region of Atyrau, but the company was very satisfied because the size of the plant was as equal to two other plants together. As the U.S. and German companies had joined the project, S Corporation did not need Youngho's a.s.surance letter for it anymore since those companies were proof that its investment would not be a waste.
The followers of Youngho were proud that they had achieved something in Kazakhstan although it was all Youngho's doing. However, their happy days were over soon. It was because Youngho made them receive gun training since they would be going out of the autonomous state frequently from now on. As the project began, three other employees were sent from S Corporation's headquarters. Six of S Corporation's branch employees including the new ones had to go through severe training for several days.
Because Youngho and Jong-il had volunteered to join them in order to work out, they could not complain about the harsh training. The training instructor was an employee of Zeynep Security Service. Since Youngho was suffering from the severity of the training, other employees of S Corporation including Youngho's followers must be almost dying.
"What were you thinking when you made him a training instructor?"
Jong-il was to blame for the hard training.
"Don't even talk to me. I'm dying here. I won't let him get away with this."
Hearing the two's conversation, the instructor raised his voice.
"Okay, it looks like there are some trainees who still don't know how to be respectful. Now, repeat the eighth movement four times!"
The eighth movement of the physical training exercise was twisting the whole body, which was an advanced movement. Youngho was now getting exhausted.