South Korea's presidential office has said that South Korea is planning a new hub for automotive start-ups in the south-west of the country, with the assistance of Hyundai Motor.

Hyundai and Kia will provide around 1,000 unused patents to those who want to open automotive start-ups at an innovation centre in Gwangju, with a focus on fuel-cell technologies.

"Hyundai Motor will offer substantial assistance in the whole process of corporate growth ranging from the development of ideas to industrialisation to making inroads into global markets," President Park Geun-hye said in a ceremony marking the launch of an innovation centre in Gwangju.

The Korea Herald reported that Gwangju is the latest city to launch an innovation centre meant to nurture local start-ups and venture firms with the assistance of large conglomerates. Samsung has also supported a similar scheme.

The Herald said that South Korea plans to set up twelve other innovation centres in major cities across the country this year as part of a push to build a creative economy.

Hyundai Motor said it launched the innovation centre to transform the city into a centre for hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.

"Together with financial investors, the group will raise 177.5 billion won ($164 million) to develop the eco-friendly industry in Gwangju,'' Hyundai Motor said in a statement.

"The centre will focus on nurturing start-ups, providing key infrastructure and creating an 'ecosystem' for the hydrogen economy by training workers and strengthening necessary networks,'' the company said.