President Lee Myung-bak expressed hope Monday that South Korea's "science-business belt" project will promote the country's science and technology and lead the nation to a better future, an official said, after a government-led committee decided to set up the complex in the central city of Daejeon. Earlier, the science business belt selection committee said the Daedeok district in the northern part of Daejeon, located 164 kilometers south of Seoul, will host the National Basic Science Institute and a particle accelerator aimed at helping South Korea take the lead in cutting-edge technologies. "I hope the science belt will contribute to the promotion of science so as to become the future" of South Korea, Lee said at a meeting with senior aides, according to presidential spokeswoman Kim Hee-jung. The 3.5 trillion won project, along with another project to relocate the headquarters of a major state corporation, has been the focus of much attention after the government scrapped a new airport project last month citing the lack of economic viability. A number of regional governments had vied for the project, believing it could boost their economies, which fueled regional rivalries and division as a result.