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Full Rollout of 'Brand K', National Co-Brand for SMEs

Global Growth Policy Division
□ Improve the process of selecting innovative and marketable SME products to represent Korea
□ Improve product quality and enhance awareness by facilitating support for funding (investment/loans) and utilizing partnerships with large corporations
□ Support entry into global markets by establishing entry strategies tailored to the specific nature of each distribution channel and/or region
The government is reinforcing its support to expand 'Brand K', the shared brand of promising SMEs, by improving the product selection process and providing a variety of support measures, including the facilitation of funding and export for selected items.
At the 'National Policy Agenda Coordination Committee' held by the Prime Minister on the 26th of the month, the Ministry of SMEs and Startups announced the 「Brand K Rollout Strategy」. The Ministry is committed to gathering the collective strengths of government agencies to support exporting by SMEs through the expansion of Brand K, which is already operating successfully following its initial launch in Thailand in September, 2019.
The measure aims to firmly establish the identity of 'Brand K', the shared national brand, developed to provide sideline support to SMEs with strong products that are being discounted because of weak brand power. Escalating support for the selected items will enhance awareness of Brand K, both at home and abroad, and increase participation in Brand K by promising companies.
In line with the announced measures, the government will coordinate efforts with export-related agencies such as the Korea International Trade Association, The Korea SMEs and Startups Agency, the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency, the Korea Export-Import Bank and Korea Trade Insurance Corporation to develop the products selected for Brand K into premium goods, and work with government agencies such as the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, the Ministry of Health and Welfare and the Ministry of Agriculture and Food to promote the products at various events, in order to enhance awareness of Brand K and secure sales opportunities.
Furthermore, in order to publicize Brand K and secure market competitiveness as a new brand, a joint committee of public and private sector experts will be established around the Korea International Trade Association to steer the brand in the right direction, as well as reinforcing follow-up management, including overall quality control of the products and brand, and prevention and resolution of potential disputes over intellectual property rights.
According to Park Young-sun, Minister of SMEs and Startups, "many countries have established shared national brands by leveraging their country image, seeking to back the superiority of the products of their SMEs and support their entry into global markets." The minister continued to explain that "Brand K will be effective in taking the innovative, creative and sophisticated image of Korea and the Korean Wave and embedding that image on the products of our SMEs. The MSS will focus on its policies and efforts to actively support Korean SMEs to make smooth entry into markets around the world."