The government of Jeju Island has decided to revoke a permit it granted to a Chinese-owned medical center that was set to become the first for-profit hospital in South Korea.
Jeju Province Governor Won Hee-ryong announced the decision regarding the Greenland International Medical Center at a press conference on Wednesday.
The governor said the hospital was supposed to open within three months of receiving the conditional permit that was granted last December, but did not consult with the Jeju government regarding its opening and requested an extension for the opening period only after the agreed-upon deadline had drawn near.
Won also explained that unlike its original business plan, stating it would treat mainly foreigners, the Greenland International Medical Center filed an administrative lawsuit against the Jeju government, arguing that the condition the center could only treat foreigners is illegal. Last December, the center received conditional approval from Jeju to open as South Korea's first for-profit hospital on the condition that Korean patients are not treated.
The governor also pointed out the hospital had failed to produce materials proving that it sought to employ new staff members needed to launch operations.
Won, however, was quick to add that he would consult with the Jeju Free International City Development Center, Greenland Group and the Ministry of Health and Welfare on ways to normalize the functions of Jeju Healthcare Town, which houses the Greenland International Medical Center.