Fact-Finding Mission

«Zurich meets Seoul» Business Mission to the Tiger Nation - South Korea

In the early 60’, South Korea was among the poorest countries in the world. Within a record time of 30 years, Korea built a developed and affluent economy which boasts world leading companies in many industries. Economically, South Korea punches way above its political importance as a classic middle power. South Korea’s exports in 2018 hit the 600 billion US$ mark making Korea the 6th largest exporter. Korean companies such as Samsung, SK, Hyundai, Doosan, LG and Celltrion gained top spots in many high-tech industries worldwide.

«Zurich meets Seoul» Business Mission

South Korea’s capital, Seoul, is one of the leading global cities in the world. Highly connected with other global cities, it is a thriving place in the arts, culture, business, high-tech innovation and tourism.

Switzerland Global Enterprise, together with the Canton of Zurich, Zürcher Kantonalbank and Swissmem, invite you to a business mission to Seoul, South Korea, from September 30 to October 2nd, 2019. The three-day program will give you insights into the South Korean culture and business environment and provide an excellent platform for networking among participants and local business representatives.

The "Zurich meets Seoul" festival with over 25 events will also take place during the same timing, from September 25 to October 5. Participants of the business mission will be able to participate in the official delegation programme, which will be led by Carmen Walker Späh, President of the Canton of Zurich and Economic Director, and Corine Mauch, Mayor of Zurich. The festival is organized by the Canton and the City of Zurich as well as Zurich Tourism together with ETH, the University of Zurich, ZHAW and ZHdK. The goal: to present Zurich as an attractive location for culture, science and innovation.

Program Highlights

  • Gala-Dinner at the Embassy of Switzerland in Korea
  • Workshop “Doing Business in Korea”
  • Networking platform with high-level participants


Monday, September 30, 2019

The three-day program will kick off with a seminar in the Embassy of Switzerland providing exclusive insights into the Korean economy and business environment. Leading experts will discuss with you:

  • how to do business in Korea
  • the structure of the Korean economy and implications for Swiss companies
  • economic policy, the role of government in business
  • the mystery of the large family-controlled conglomerates (chaebol)

Korea was the first nation to build a country-wide 5G network. This network will serve as the backbone of Internet of things applications,such as autonomous vehicles, smart homes and cities, digital identities, payment systems, traffic management and electronic health records.
We shall visit the largest Korean 5G provider, SK Telecom and will get exclusive first-hand insights into their strategies, R&D, applications and product development. SKT is a strategic investor in the Swiss quantum encryption company IDQ. We will learn more about this Swiss angle on SKT’s 5G strategy.
The business mission participants will be invited to the official Gala Dinner for the “Zurich meets Seoul” (ZmS) project.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

The second day of the business mission will concentrate on applications in mobility and smart cities. In the morning, the business mission will attend the Smart City Summit together with the official delegation of the city of Zurich under the leadership of city mayor Ms. Corinne Mauch. The summit will feature presentations by various international cities, potential industrial solutions and funding opportunities from Korean government programs. The Smart City Summit will take place in the iconic Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP), designed by late architect Zaha Hadid.
We will visit the research center of Hyundai Motors in Yongin. We will be given an exclusive first-hand overview of Hyundai’s leading research on autonomous vehicles, hydrogen fuel cells and mobility in general. We will learn why Hyundai has a very specific Swiss angle on the development of a “hydrogen economy”.
The dinner will be combined with a culinary experience only possible in Korea. We will go to a micro-brewery where a high-level version of the Korean national drink, makgeolli, is brewed. Makgeolli is a kind of rice beer, and boasts many health benefits due to its probiotic nature. High quality makgeolli is rarely known in Switzerland as the real, non-pasteurized version needs to be consumed within a short time after production and thus is not widely exported. Makgeolli goes very well with Korean food which will be plentiful. You will like it!

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

The last day of the business mission will reinforce what we learned during the two previous days. Any Digital Transformation concept starts with the collection of data. We will visit the “control tower” of the megacity Seoul (TOPIS) where real-time smart city data is collected, analyzed and distributed to all stakeholders. We will learn why the city mayor of Seoul, Mr Park Won-Soon, refers to Seoul as the “most transparent megacity on the planet”.
Right after the visit to TOPIS we will transfer to the Pangyo Techno Valley (PTV), the largest technology ecosystem in Korea. It is also known as the Silicon Valley of Asia. The complex, which focuses on information technology, biotech, cultural technology and fusion technology, stretches over 660,000 m2. The second phase will add yet another 425,000 m2. The business mission will meet some of the hottest startups in Korea. 
A light debriefing dinner in Pangyo or in Seoul will conclude the ZmS business mission.

Thursday, October 3, 2019 (optional, public holiday)
As an option – not sponsored by Zürcher Kantonalbank – and with limited space, we are organizing an exclusive trip to the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) alongside the border with North Korea. This trip will be guided by a former Swiss officer who used to serve in the Swiss Delegation to the Neutral Nations Supervisory Commission (NNSC). NNSC was commissioned by the United Nations Command. Its mission consists of the inspection and investigation of specific parts of the Armistice Agreement between the two Koreas. We shall have a briefing by the current head of the Swiss Delegation in the Swiss Camp, a lunch in the Swiss-Swedish canteen and will be shown many places of historic interest. We shall be able (subject to the current security situation) to visit the Joint Security Area (JSA), the only connection between North and South Korea. On the way back we will visit the Gyeongbokgung Palace (UNESCO Cultural Heritage site) and the Jogyesa temple. The day will conclude with another culinary experience with Korean drinks and food.

The same optional program will take place on September 29, 2019 for business mission participants arriving early in the morning (for example with Lufthansa at 05:40).

Participation Cost
CHF 2’100.- for S-GE members, Swissmem members and clients of Zürcher Kantonalbank
CHF 2’300.- for non-members

Price per particicpant excl. VAT

Included in the price: 

  • All transports logistics on the ground
  • Accommodation
  • Meals
  • Gala Dinner

Flights* and Airport transfers

* Participants are able to enjoy a special rate for Flights with Lufthansa

Cancellation terms
Before 15.08.2019: 50% of fee
After 15.08.2019: 100% of fee

For further information:
Jacqueline Tschumi, Consultant South Korea, jtschumi@s-ge.com, +41 44 365 54 83Image removed.Image removed.Image removed.Image removed.


Target audience Companies in the Canton of Zurich
Organizer S-GE and Swiss Business Hub South Korea
Event language


Cost of participating CHF 2’300.- for non-members, CHF 2’100.- for S-GE and Swissmem members, CHF 2’100.- for clients of Zürcher Kantonalbank - Price per participant excluding VAT
Registration deadline
Members specials

CHF 2’100.- for S-GE members


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