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Economic News

South Korean documentary highlights Portland's outdoors, apparel industry

October 05,2020 | By Anna Marum
Portland was the subject of a recent documentary produced by Seoul Broadcasting System, which aired on South Korean public TV. The video features an interview with Shawn Kim, deputy director of the Port of Portland's Korea Representative Office. The piece showcases the Greater Portland region's accessible outdoors, powerhouse footwear & athletic apparel industry and bike-friendly streets.



Greater Portland has seen recent investments by several South Korean companies, including high-tech outdoor apparel company Black Yak. The forests, rivers, mountains and beaches located within an hour of Portland continue to draw athletic apparel firms in need of a living laboratory to test their products. Greater Portland is the world's hub for the outdoor apparel industry, home to headquarters for Nike, Adidas, Columbia Sportswear Company, Keen and many more, offering a talent pool that is both wide and deep in its skill level.

Here is a rough translation of the interview with Shawn Kim in the documentary:

"Portland is the most famous city of outdoor industries. We call Portland the 'The Mecca of Outdoor.'

“There is lots of forest in downtown Portland. Therefore, Portland people can enjoy their outdoor life even in downtown. Also, Mt. Hood which is over 10,000 ft, is located about an hour from downtown Portland. The summit of Mt. Hood is covered by permanent snow field, so skiing is available all year around even summer. Furthermore, the Pacific Coast is located about an hour far from Portland as well.

“As you can see from this book, Portland is called the “Bike Town.” Portland have the highest ratio of bike commuters in U.S.”

“For win-win relationship, Portlanders recognized they should respect and understand each other. At the beginning, Portlanders had many conflicts because people came from different places. They solved the problems with the mutual understanding.”

“Portland is a good example of win(City)-win(Company) relationship city, however it was not that good at the beginning. Portland had many conflicts to solve and they solved those issue. While that, they found how to cooperate each other and keep their good sustainable system.”

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