Dear friends, colleagues, fellow scholars, professors, and intellectuals.
On behalf of Screen Quota Action Alliance (Alliance of the Korean film milieu, which opposes screen quota reduction and a Korea-US FTA), I am asking you to help Korean film makers and their associates in their effort to protect Korea's cultural identity and the world's cultural diversity by keeping the present Screen Quota System intact in the country. Most analysts of Korean cinema today agree that this system has been instrumental to rendering Korean film robust and competitive against the world-dominant Hollywood film. In the midst of an attempt to further the neoliberalization of the country, however, the South Korean government now plans to reduce the mandatory 146 days of screen showing--with exemptions, the days can be reduced to 106--reserved for Korean film to only 73 days.
It is feared that this measure will create a dire situation not only for the Korean film industry but also for the entire Korean population. The screen quota reduction deal is part of the negotiation now in progress to complete the Free Trade Agreement between South Korea and the United States. A careful analysis of the international relationship in North East Asia shows that it is the US not South Korea that wants this deal. As is well known, the US attempts to impose the neoliberal world order everywhere possible. This time, the US uses the leverage of its military might, imposing "strategic flexibility" and threatening the security of North Korea. To maintain stable condition in the Korean Peninsula, South Korea has to accept the terms the US set for the FTA. Of course, the South Korean government has its own neoliberal schemes. By accepting the US preconditions, it hopes not only for peace in Korea, but also for a neoliberalized North Korea, which will be a boon for South Korean chaebol corporations as well as US capital.
The impact of the FTA will be dire. It will certainly devastate Korean film, irreversibly damaging Korea's cultural independence. But this is not all. The agreement will polarize the population in both Koreas. In the mean time, the US may gain its strategic flexibility and succeed in maintaining China, but this may lead to an increase in the military tension, intensifying the arms race in the region. Our effort to keep the Screen Quota system is thus part of the social movement against global neoliberalization pursued by the US. We sincerely ask you to show your support and solidarity for our struggle against neoliberalism. For a detailed analysis of the question of quota reduction, please see the attached materials.
In order to submit the attached letter of comments signed by you to the House during its public hearings, which starts on March 24, please send it to us through our e-mail(email@example.com), fax((82-2-319-2039) by noon (in Korean time) on March 22. Or you may send the following information to the same e-mail address.
Your Name: Position: Address/e-mail: Phone Number: