Legal threat over university's plan for Korean campus

The opening of an Aberdeen University campus in Hadong has been repeatedly delayed.

South Korea: High hopes during announcement in 2015. University of Aberdeen

South Korean authorities have threatened legal action over a Scottish university's long-delayed plan to open a campus in the country.

Aberdeen University announced it had signed an agreement for a branch in the southern county of Hadong in 2015.

At the time it described the deal as a "significant milestone" which would create "huge opportunities".

The opening has been repeatedly delayed, however, leading to a dispute with authorities in Hadong.

They have threatened to take legal action to recoup money spent building the campus if it does not open in March 2019.

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Around £6.8m has been invested already, according to South Korean news agency Yonhap.

The campus was intended to specialise in oil and gas-related degrees but Aberdeen University now wants to steer it towards decommissioning and renewables.

A spokeswoman for Aberdeen University said: "The downturn in the oil and gas industry has led to reduced demand for the types of degrees in offshore engineering originally envisaged for Hadong, which has been clearly demonstrated by low application levels.

"Despite many efforts to adapt to the downturn and change the focus of the campus towards programmes which were more relevant to the new market conditions - such as degrees in decommissioning and renewable energy engineering - we have not yet received the necessary support in Korea to achieve this.

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"We continue to seek a mutually agreeable way forward with our partners and we look forward to welcoming them to Aberdeen for further discussions later this month."

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