My fellow Koreans,
We enter the new year, the Eulminyeon, with new confidence and new hope.
My fellow citizens,
I want to take a moment today to wish all of you a very happy New Year, a year in which your dreams and hopes will come true.
This year is very meaningful for us, in that 2015 marks the 70th anniversary of both national independence and division.
Looking back on the past seven decades, we’ve seen so many miracles. We’ve seen the whole nation join forces and achieve a miracle on the Hangang River. We’ve seen all the people maintain and develop a liberal democracy over the years.
We are now standing at the starting point of the next 70 years.
I believe that all of us have an equal responsibility to remember what our previous generations were capable of, to make Korea a competitive and proud nation. We should live up to that legacy for the future generations to come.
To this end, our most important task now is to give a boost to our economy.
Last year, the whole nation worked together to get our economy back on track and the recovery gained great traction. This year, as president, my commitment to you is to keep that recovery going. I will launch an era in which the average yearly per capita income reaches USD 40,000 by basing the economy on creativity and innovation.
I’ve also made a firm resolution to clean up deep-rooted irregularities so as to make sure that our society is transparent, safe and trustworthy.
As we close the books on the past 70 years, full of national division and conflict, I will pave the way for the unification of the peninsula by leading the North down the path toward trust and change, and building a practical and concrete foundation for a unified Korea.
The most important thing to make that happen, I believe, is for the whole nation to come together as one.
There’s a saying that, “When we encounter mountains, we make a road to go through them. When we encounter waters, we make a bridge to cross them.” If we join our forces and capabilities and move forward together, I am confident that we are posed for a period of progress, able to overcome any kind of difficulty.
I hope that we will work together and, together as one, get through the difficult times this year.
I hope that all of you will join me in the task of opening a new era of change and hope. Happy New Year.