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South Korean food delivery gets a government-backed challenger

Publicly-run app aims to inject competition into fast-growing market

South Korea's food delivery market has grown explosively amid the pandemic, but it is dominated by just two players.   © EPA/YONHAP/Jiji

SEONGNAM, South Korea -- The government of South Korea's most populous province is set to launch a public-private food delivery app in hopes of loosening the iron grip that the two dominant players have on the fast-growing market.

South Korea's food delivery market has grown explosively as the coronavirus pandemic spurred a rise in remote working and put a damper on dining out. According to data from market tracker WiseApp, food delivery sales hit 1.2 trillion won ($1.05 billion) in August, up 28% from the previous month and the highest monthly total ever.

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