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GM's restructuring plans are a timely warning for South Korea

Seoul must address structural problems to keep industry and the economy on track

The impact of the decision will not be limited to GM's 16,000-strong workforce in South Korea, but will also affect their families, as well as subcontractors.   © Reuters

TOKYO General Motors plans to shrink its ailing South Korean operations, and Seoul is rightly worried about limiting the immediate economic fallout from the move. But policymakers should also see it as a timely warning about the deep structural issues plaguing the country's economy.

The U.S. automaker's South Korean unit recently logged its fourth straight year in the red, and GM, as part of its global restructuring, decided to slash operations in the country.

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