S. Korea earmarks $11 bn for this year’s first extra budget for small businesses

2022.01.21 15:53:30 | 2022.01.21 16:01:58

[Photo by MK DB]이미지 확대

[Photo by MK DB]

The South Korean government has proposed to allocate 14 trillion won ($11.7 billion) for this year’s first supplementary budget to support small business owners hit hard by Covid-19 social distancing rules and increase hospital beds for critically-ill patients.

According to the Office for Government Policy Coordination and Prime Minister’s Secretariat, Cabinet members on Friday nodded to 2022’s first extra budget of 14 trillion won in a meeting at Seoul government complex in Seoul. The approved proposal comes one week after Prime Minister Kim Boo-kyum confirmed supplementary budget in a meeting, saying that the government will lay out the extra funds to deepen support on small merchants.

S. Korea`s Prime Minister Kim Boo-kyum. [Photo by Yonhap]이미지 확대

S. Korea`s Prime Minister Kim Boo-kyum. [Photo by Yonhap]

The government plans to submit the 14 trillion won supplementary budget proposal to the National Assembly for approval on Monday.

The latest extra budget, which is the seventh of its kind to cope with the pandemic since early 2020, will be spent to provide 3 million won each to small business owners grappling with plunging sales due to the state’s strict social distancing rules. The rest will be spent to increase hospital beds for severely-ill patients.

Kim also called for the National Assembly to swiftly approve the extra budget.

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But it remains to be seen whether the latest extra budget proposal would pass at the parliament. With the latest supplementary budget proposal, the country’s deficit would increase to 70 trillion won.

Combined with this year’s record budget of 607.7 trillion won, Asia’s fourth largest economy’s total spending for 2022 would hit 621.7 trillion won, up 11.4 percent from last year’s budget. But the government’s revenue stays at 553.6 trillion won. The Korean government plans to issue bonds to support the latest extra budget.

By Lee Eun-joo

[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]