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S. Korea to roll out more digital services amid pandemic

A sign of the Ministry of Science and ICT at its office in Sejong, 120 kilometers south of Seoul. (Ministry of Science and ICT)
A sign of the Ministry of Science and ICT at its office in Sejong, 120 kilometers south of Seoul. (Ministry of Science and ICT)
South Korea will start to unveil more digital services, from mobile identification to artificial intelligence (AI) doctors, as the pandemic limits face-to-face contact, the ICT ministry said Thursday.

The Ministry of Science and ICT said it has named key services to support for digital transition amid the pandemic, including rolling out mobile identification for public servants from this year and mobile driver's licenses from next year.

The ministry said it will also pursue a test service for robot delivery for small merchants and develop digital kiosks that won't require contact to reduce the risk of infection next year.

The ministry said it will support development of an AI physician to boost medical services for up to 20 diseases, such as diabetes and heart-related diseases, by 2024. It will also support development of an AI-based psychological treatment service for depression patients next year.

The ministry added that it will spend 180 billion won ($150 million) next year to foster companies that specialize in data, cloud and blockchain technology.

The latest announcement comes as a follow-up to the government's digital New Deal program announced in July that aims to spend 58.2 trillion won on digital projects and increase state investment in new technologies to create some 900,000 jobs by 2025. (Yonhap)
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