“Undersea tunnels are necessary for Busan to become the center of the Pan-Japan Economic Zone.” This year, the city of Busan will launch a research project to analyze the feasibility of building an undersea tunnel between Korea and Japan. The installation of the Peace Girl Statue in front of the Japanese consulate has caused diplomatic relations between the two countries to deteriorate.
Undersea tunnel construction site in Karatsu, Saga Prefecture, Kyushu, the starting point on the Japanese side of the Korea-Japan Undersea Tunnel.
At the ``2017 Policy Concert'' held in the presence of Mayor Seo Byung-soo on the 10th, the city of Busan said, ``Basic research for the construction of the Korea-Japan undersea tunnel, which is one of the strategies for the development of the West Busan area. It will be implemented for one year from May." The construction of the undersea tunnel is one of the 50 major projects in the '2030 West Busan Global City Grand Plan' announced by the city in 2015.
It reflects the mayor's will because an undersea tunnel is necessary for Busan to become the center of the Pan-Japan Sea Economic Zone, which connects South Korea, North Korea, China, Japan, and Russia. The employment cost is 100 million won.
The main research contents are: ▷ Analysis of the impact of the Japan-Korea undersea tunnel on the Busan economy ▷ Public awareness survey ▷ Feasible routes. In 2009, the Busan Development Institute (BDI) proposed a route of Gangseo-gu, Gadeok Island, Japan Tsushima Island, Iki Island, and Fukuoka (222.64 km, project cost of 92 trillion won). It turns out that the Japanese side prefers the Kyushu Karatsu-Iki Island-Tsushima-Geojedo-Gadeokdo-Busan route (288 km, project cost 100 trillion won).
The key is public sentiment towards the undersea tunnel. Experts also claim that the undersea tunnel will not only facilitate economic exchange, but will also become a symbol of the joint prosperity of Japan and South Korea, and that it will serve as a passageway for Japan to advance into the continent, and will be of practical benefit to Busan. This is because the counterargument that there is no such thing is evenly opposed. The recent intensification of the diplomatic conflict between South Korea and Japan over the installation of the Busan Girl Statue is also expected to have an effect on the spread of negative perceptions of the undersea tunnel.
Seong Sam-jeong, head of the West Busan Development Headquarters, said, “It is true that there are many variables in the relationship between South Korea and Japan, and the utility itself is a burden. See," he said. He added, “The undersea tunnel between South Korea and Japan is impossible without state-level support, so we will promote it as a long-term issue.” Earlier, at the South Korea-Japan Undersea Tunnel Debate held by Busan Citizens' Solidarity for Economic Revitalization in November last year, Chuo University Professor Heo Jae-wan (specializing in urban economics) said, "The South Korea-Japan undersea tunnel will be built at a cost of less than 65 trillion won. It is economical,” he argued.