Time in South Korea

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Time in South Korea is given by Korea Standard Time (KST; Hangulko:한국 표준시; hanja韓國標準時; RRHan-guk pyojunsi) and is 9 hours ahead of UTC (UTC+09:00): i.e., when it is midnight (00:00) UTC, it is 9 am (09:00) Korea Standard Time. South Korea does not observe daylight saving time, but experimented with it during the 1988 Seoul Olympics.[1][2] Korea Standard Time is the same as Japan Standard Time, Indonesian Eastern Standard Time and Yakutsk Time. North Korea was also on Korea Standard Time, but in August 2015 adopted Pyongyang Standard Time, which is 30 minutes behind.[3]


The Korean Empire adopted a standard time of 8.5 hours ahead of UTC in 1908. In 1912, the Japanese colonial government changed this to UTC+09:00 to align with Japan Standard Time. In 1954 it was reverted to UTC+08:30 and then in 1961, it was changed to UTC+09:00 again.[4] There is controversy between the government and lawmakers in South Korea regarding the country's standard time. Many lawmakers claim that South Korea should adopt the same time as North Korea, claiming it aids in recovering body rhythm and also to resume the time used before external interference. The government opposes the change due to the application of daylight savings time and convenience in international dealings.[citation needed]

North Korea announced that it would revert its time zone to UTC+08:30 on 15 August 2015, which coincides with Liberation Day, and adopt the same standard time as in 1908.[5][6]

IANA time zone database[edit]

The IANA time zone database contains one zone for South Korea in the file zone.tab, named Asia/Seoul.