South Korea

Republic of Korea
Daehan Minguk
Motto: " 홍익인간 (弘益人間)" ( Korean) ( de facto)
"Benefit broadly in the human world /
Devotion to the Welfare of Humanity"
Anthem:  Aegukga "애국가 (愛國歌)" ( Korean) ( de facto)
"Patriotic Song"
Government Emblem
Emblem of the Government of the Republic of Korea.svg
대한민국정부 상징문양 (Korean)
Government Emblem of South Korea
Projection of Asia with South Korea in green
Area controlled by South Korea is shown in dark green; South Korean-claimed but uncontrolled regions shown in light green.
Status Sovereign state
and largest city
37°33′N 126°58′E / 37°33′N 126°58′E / 37.550; 126.967
Official languages Korean
Korean Sign Language [2]
Official script Hangul
Ethnic groups Predominately Korean. No official statistics [3] [4]
Government Unitary presidential
constitutional republic
•  President
Moon Jae-in
Lee Nak-yeon
Chung Sye-kyun
Kim Myeong-soo
Lee Jin-Sung
Legislature National Assembly
c. 7th century BC
18 BC
October 12, 1897
August 29, 1910
March 1, 1919
April 13, 1919
August 15, 1945
August 15, 1948
February 25, 1988
• Admitted to the United Nations
September 17, 1991
• Total
100,210 km2 (38,690 sq mi) ( 107th)
• Water (%)
0.3 (301 km2 / 116 mi2)
• 2017 estimate
51,446,201 [7] [8] ( 27th)
• Density
507/km2 (1,313.1/sq mi) ( 23rd)
GDP ( PPP) 2018 estimate
• Total
$2.029 trillion [9] ( 13th)
• Per capita
$41,173 [9] ( 28th)
GDP (nominal) 2018 estimate
• Total
$1.53 trillion [10] ( 11th)
• Per capita
$30,919 [11] ( 29th)
Gini (2015) 29.5 [12]
HDI (2015) Increase 0.901 [13]
very high ·  18th
Currency South Korean won (₩)
( KRW)
Time zone Korea Standard Time ( UTC+9)
Date format
  • yyyy년 m월 d일
  • yyyy. m. d. ( CE)
Drives on the right
Calling code +82
ISO 3166 code KR
Internet TLD
South Korea
South Korea (Hangul and Hanja).svg
"South Korea" in Hangul (top) and Hanja (bottom) scripts.
Hangul 한국
Hanja 韓國
Revised Romanization Hanguk
McCune–Reischauer Hanguk
Republic of Korea
Hangul 대한민국
Hanja 大韓民國
Revised Romanization Daehan Min-guk
McCune–Reischauer Taehan Min’guk

South Korea, officially the Republic of Korea (abbreviated ROK), is a sovereign state in East Asia constituting the southern part of the Korean Peninsula. [14] South Koreans lead a distinctive urban lifestyle, with half of them living in high-rises [15] concentrated in the Seoul Capital Area with 25 million residents. [16]

The earliest neolithic Korean pottery dates to 8000 BC, [17] with three kingdoms flourishing in the 1st century BC. The name Korea is derived from one of them, Goguryeo, which was one of the great powers in East Asia during its time, [18] [19] [20] [21] ruling most of the Korean Peninsula, Manchuria, some parts of the Russian Far East [22] and Inner Mongolia, [23] under Gwanggaeto the Great. [24] Since the unification of the Korean kingdoms into Unified Silla and Balhae in the 7th century, Korea enjoyed over a millennium of relative tranquility under long-lasting dynasties. [25] Koreans developed improved versions of many advanced innovations such as the metal movable type printing press, which used to print and publish the Jikji, the world's oldest extant movable metal type printed paper book in 1377. By the 15th century, Koreans had one of the highest living standards in East Asia, [26] and Sejong the Great invented Hangul to promote literacy amongst the general Korean population, enabling anyone to easily learn to read and write and transfer written information rather than spend years in learning complicated Hanja. [27] Its rich and vibrant culture left 19 UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritages of Humanity, the third largest in the world, along with 12 World Heritage Sites.

Annexed into Imperial Japan in 1910, the country's current political structure dates back to 1919 when the Korean Provisional Government was organized in Shanghai, China as a government in exile and then moved to Chungking to resist the Japanese occupation of Korea. After Japan's surrender in 1945, Korea was divided along the 38th parallel with the United States controlling the southern part. This region was declared the First Korean Republic on August 15, 1948, but a North Korean invasion led to the Korean War (1950–1953) two years later. Peace has since mostly continued with the two agreeing to work peacefully for reunification and the South solidifying peace as a regional power with the world's 10th largest defense budget.

South Korea is one of the Four Asian Tigers. The South Korean economy soared at an annual average of 10% for over 30 years [28] in a period of rapid transformation called the Miracle on the Han River. A long legacy of openness and focus on innovation made it successful. [29] Today, it is the world's fourteenth largest economy and fifth largest exporter with the G20's largest budget surplus [30] and a high Credit Rating of AA. [31] It has free trade agreements with 75% of the world economy and is the only G20 nation trading freely with China, the US and the EU simultaneously. [32] Since 1988, its constitution guarantees a liberal democracy with high government transparency and many fundamental rights such as universal healthcare. [33] High personal freedoms led to the rise of a globally influential pop culture [34] such as K-pop and K-drama, a phenomenon called the Korean Wave, known for its distinctive fashionable and trendy style. [35] Home of the UN Green Climate Fund and GGGI, South Korea is a leader in low carbon green growth, [36] committed to helping developing countries as a major DAC and Paris Club contributor. A study has suggested that it is the world's third least ignorant country when questioned about their population, [37] ranking eighth highest for peaceful tolerance and inclusion of minorities on the Fragile States Index. [38]

South Korea is a technologically advanced developed country driven by a highly educated and skilled workforce, having the world's eighth highest median household income, the highest in Asia. [39] Globally, it ranks highly in personal safety, job security, ease of doing business and healthcare quality, with the world's third highest health adjusted life expectancy and fourth most efficient healthcare system. [40] It is the world's largest spender on R&D per GDP, leading the OECD in graduates in science and engineering [41] and ranking third in the Youth Wellbeing Index. [42] Home of Samsung, LG and Hyundai-Kia, South Korea was named the world's most innovative country for 4 consecutive years since 2014 in the Bloomberg Innovation Index, [43] ranking first in business R&D intensity, manufacturing value-added, patents filed per GDP, second in higher education efficiency and fourth in high-tech density and researcher concentration. [44] In 2005, it became the world's first country to fully transition to high-speed Internet [45] and today it has the world's fastest Internet speed and highest smartphone ownership, ranking first in ICT Development, e-Government [46] and 4G LTE coverage. South Korea currently provides the world's second largest number of Christian missionaries, surpassed only by the United States. [47]

South Korea is a member of the ASEAN Plus mechanism, United Nations, World Bank, World Health Organization, International Monetary Fund, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation and G20.


The name Korea is derived from Goguryeo, also known as Koryŏ, one of the Three Kingdoms of Korea

The name Korea derives from the name Goryeo. The name Goryeo itself was first used by the ancient kingdom of Goguryeo in the 5th century as a shortened form of its name. The 10th-century kingdom of Goryeo succeeded Goguryeo, [48] [49] [50] [51] and thus inherited its name, which was pronounced by visiting Persian merchants as "Korea". [52] The modern spelling of Korea first appeared in the late 17th century in the travel writings of the Dutch East India Company's Hendrick Hamel. [53] Despite the coexistence of the spellings Corea and Korea in 19th century publications, some Koreans believe that Imperial Japan, around the time of the Japanese occupation, intentionally standardised the spelling on Korea, making Japan appear first alphabetically. [53] [54] [55]

After Goryeo was replaced by Joseon in 1392, Joseon became the official name for the entire territory, though it was not universally accepted. The new official name has its origin in the ancient country of Gojoseon (Old Joseon). In 1897, the Joseon dynasty changed the official name of the country from Joseon to Daehan Jeguk ( Korean Empire). The name Daehan, which means "great Han" literally, derives from Samhan (Three Hans). However, the name Joseon was still widely used by Koreans to refer to their country, though it was no longer the official name. Under Japanese rule, the two names Han and Joseon coexisted. There were several groups who fought for independence, the most notable being the Provisional Government of the Republic of Korea (대한민국 임시정부/大韓民國臨時政府).

Following the surrender of Japan, in 1945, the Republic of Korea (대한민국/大韓民國, IPA: ˈtɛ̝ːɦa̠nminɡuk̚, literally "Great Korean people's country"; About this sound  listen) was adopted as the legal name for the new country. Since the government only controlled the southern part of the Korean Peninsula, the informal term South Korea was coined, becoming increasingly common in the Western world. While South Koreans use Han (or Hanguk) to refer to the entire country, North Koreans and ethnic Koreans in China and Japan use the term Joseon as the name of the country.

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Suid-Korea
Alemannisch: Südkorea
አማርኛ: ደቡብ ኮርያ
Ænglisc: Sūþcorēa
aragonés: Coreya d'o Sud
arpetan: Corê du Sud
asturianu: Corea del Sur
Avañe'ẽ: Ñemby Koréa
azərbaycanca: Cənubi Koreya
تۆرکجه: جنوبی کوره
Bân-lâm-gú: Tāi-hân Bîn-kok
башҡортса: Көньяҡ Корея
беларуская: Паўднёвая Карэя
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Рэспубліка Карэя
Bikol Central: Sur nin Korea
Bislama: Saot Koria
български: Южна Корея
Boarisch: Sidkorea
bosanski: Južna Koreja
brezhoneg: Republik Korea
català: Corea del Sud
čeština: Jižní Korea
chiShona: South Korea
chiTumbuka: South Korea
Cymraeg: De Corea
dansk: Sydkorea
davvisámegiella: Lulli-Korea
Deutsch: Südkorea
ދިވެހިބަސް: ދެކުނު ކޮރެއާ
dolnoserbski: Pódpołdnjowa Koreja
Ελληνικά: Νότια Κορέα
español: Corea del Sur
Esperanto: Sud-Koreio
estremeñu: Corea del Sul
euskara: Hego Korea
eʋegbe: South Korea
فارسی: کره جنوبی
Fiji Hindi: South Korea
føroyskt: Suðurkorea
français: Corée du Sud
Gàidhlig: Coirèa a Deas
galego: Corea do Sur
贛語: 韓國
Gĩkũyũ: South Korea
गोंयची कोंकणी / Gõychi Konknni: दक्षिण कोरिया
客家語/Hak-kâ-ngî: Thai-hòn Mìn-koet
한국어: 대한민국
hornjoserbsce: Južna Koreja
hrvatski: Južna Koreja
বিষ্ণুপ্রিয়া মণিপুরী: খা কোরিয়া
Bahasa Indonesia: Korea Selatan
interlingua: Corea del Sud
Interlingue: Sud-Korea
Iñupiak: Natiq Korea
íslenska: Suður-Kórea
italiano: Corea del Sud
Basa Jawa: Koréa Kidul
kalaallisut: Korea Kujalleq
Kapampangan: Mauling Korea
къарачай-малкъар: Корея Республика
kaszëbsczi: Repùblika Kòreji
kernowek: Korea Dhyhow
Kiswahili: Korea Kusini
Kreyòl ayisyen: Kore disid
Кыргызча: Түштүк Корея
لۊری شومالی: کورأ هارگأ
latviešu: Dienvidkoreja
Lëtzebuergesch: Republik Korea
lietuvių: Pietų Korėja
Ligure: Corea do Sud
Limburgs: Zuud-Korea
lingála: Koré ya Súdi
Livvinkarjala: Suvi Korea
la .lojban.: snanu zei .xanguk
lumbaart: Curea del Süd
magyar: Dél-Korea
македонски: Јужна Кореја
Malagasy: Korea Atsimo
მარგალური: ობჟათე კორეა
مازِرونی: جنوبی کره
Bahasa Melayu: Korea Selatan
Baso Minangkabau: Korea Salatan
Mìng-dĕ̤ng-ngṳ̄: Dâi-hàng Mìng-guók
Dorerin Naoero: Ripubrikin Korea
Nederlands: Zuid-Korea
Nedersaksies: Zuud-Korea
नेपाल भाषा: दक्षिण कोरिया
日本語: 大韓民国
Napulitano: Corea d''o Sud
нохчийн: Къилба Корей
Nordfriisk: Süüdkorea
Norfuk / Pitkern: Sowth Koriya
norsk: Sør-Korea
norsk nynorsk: Sør-Korea
Nouormand: Corée du Sud
Novial: Sud Korea
олык марий: Кечывалвел Корей
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Koreya Respublikasi
پنجابی: دکھنی کوریا
Papiamentu: Sur Korea
Patois: Sout Koria
ភាសាខ្មែរ: កូរ៉េខាងត្បូង
Piemontèis: Coréa dël Sud
Tok Pisin: Saut Koria
Plattdüütsch: Süüdkorea
português: Coreia do Sul
Qaraqalpaqsha: Qubla Koreya
qırımtatarca: Cenübiy Koreya
română: Coreea de Sud
rumantsch: Corea dal Sid
Runa Simi: Tayhan Republika
русиньскый: Южна Корея
Gagana Samoa: Kolea i Saute
संस्कृतम्: दक्षिणकोरिया
sicilianu: Corea dû Sud
Simple English: South Korea
slovenščina: Južna Koreja
Soomaaliga: Koonfur Kuuriya
српски / srpski: Јужна Кореја
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Južna Koreja
Basa Sunda: Koréa Kidul
svenska: Sydkorea
Tagalog: Timog Korea
Taqbaylit: Kurya n Wenẓul
tarandíne: Coree d'u Sud
татарча/tatarça: Көньяк Корея
ትግርኛ: ደቡብ ኮርያ
Türkçe: Güney Kore
тыва дыл: Мурнуу Корея
ᨅᨔ ᨕᨘᨁᨗ: Korea Selatan
українська: Південна Корея
ئۇيغۇرچە / Uyghurche: كورىيە
Vahcuengh: Hanzgoz
vèneto: Corea del Sud
vepsän kel’: Korejan Tazovaldkund
Tiếng Việt: Hàn Quốc
文言: 大韓民國
West-Vlams: Zuud-Korea
吴语: 大韩民国
Xitsonga: Korea Dzonga
ייִדיש: דרום קארעע
粵語: 大韓民國
Zeêuws: Zuud-Korea
žemaitėška: Pėitū Kuoriejė
中文: 大韩民国