Go to Contents Go to Navigation

(LEAD) S. Korea's sovereign debt hits record high in 2018

All News 16:19 April 02, 2019

(ATTN: UPDATES with government spending)

SEJONG, April 2 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's sovereign debt hit a record high last year, the finance ministry said Tuesday.

The sovereign debt -- which covers the central and provincial governments' accounts and funds -- reached 680.7 trillion won (US$598.9 billion) in 2018, up 20.5 trillion won from a year earlier, according to the 2018 settlement of accounts endorsed by the Cabinet.

The 2018 debt growth is the slowest since 2009, the Ministry of Economy and Finance said.

South Korea's sovereign debt accounted for 38.2 percent of the nation's gross domestic product (GDP) in 2018, unchanged from a year earlier.

The ministry said the 20.5 trillion won on-year gain included 20.3 trillion won worth of state debt raised by Treasury bonds.

Meanwhile, the gross revenue that the government brought in last year came to 465.3 trillion won in 2018, compared with 430.6 trillion won in 2017. The government's expenditure totaled 434.1 trillion won in 2018, up from 406.6 trillion won in 2017.

As a result, its surplus reached 31.2 trillion won last year, widening from a surplus of 24 trillion won in 2017.

Based on the consolidated financial statements, South Korea's state assets amounted to 2,123.7 trillion won and liabilities reached 1,682.7 trillion won last year, with net assets standing at 441 trillion won.

Also Tuesday, the ministry said South Korea spent 60.3 trillion won in January and February, accounting for 20.7 percent of the 291.6 trillion won earmarked for the central government and public institutions this year.

The higher spending came as South Korea has vowed to frontload 61 percent of the national fiscal budget during the first half of this year to respond to downside risks in consumption and employment.

(LEAD) S. Korea's sovereign debt hits record high in 2018 - 1


Send Feedback
How can we improve?
Thanks for your feedback!