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Drones in South Korea

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South Korea to strengthen drone registration laws in 2021

Those with drones that have a maximum takeoff weight of over 2 kilograms will be required to register them as they do for automobiles.

South Koreans who own drones that have a maximum takeoff weight of over 2 kilograms will need to register them as they do for cars starting from next year, the government has announced. The new laws will be promulgated in May this year and come into effect on 1 January 2021, said the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport. Previously, drones that weighed less than 12 kilograms, excluding weight from fuel, were not required to be registered. The ministry said the new laws reflect safety concerns that have arisen due to the increase in the number of drones as well as the increased capacity of the machines themselves. Recently, there have been "hit and run" cases where unregistered drones would damage cars, with the owners of the drones nowhere to be found, the government said. The government will also require mandatory testing and licences for all drones weighing over 250 grams.

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