Korea’s economic development through postal history (Saemaul Undong Card, 1978)


Part of a series of 5 cards issued at 10 won each in 1978 to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the (South) Korean state, this card (CPC4) shows an important development in South Korean society. During the 1960s and 1970s South Korea tried to develop its economy. No efforts were spared to create a stronger economy. This drive was very understandable: in 1961 South Korea was one of the poorest nations on earth. It is hard to believe today, but in 1961 the average Ethiopian or Ugandan was richer than the average South Korean!

One way to get the economy going was the New Village Movement (새마을운동 or ” Saemaul Undong”). Launched in 1970 by South Korean president Park Chung-hee the idea was based on the Korean traditional communalism called Hyangyak (향약, 鄕約) and Doorae (두레), which provided the rules for self-governance and cooperation in traditional Korean communities.

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Ivo Spanjersberg
Currently KSS Publisher/Webmaster, previously KSS Chairman (2018-2019). Living in Amsterdam. I collect Korean revenue stamps, see my website:

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