SEOUL, Feb. 18 (Yonhap) -- President Moon Jae-in ordered his Cabinet on Tuesday to mobilize all available "special" means to handle the "emergency economic situations" attributable to the continued spread of the novel coronavirus.
"Emergency situations require an emergency prescription. The current situation is much more serious than (we) thought," he said in his opening remarks during a weekly Cabinet meeting at Cheong Wa Dae.
The president stressed that, "It is the time when special measures are absolutely necessary to use every possible means that the government can mobilize."
Moon's strong call reflects his resolve to minimize the pandemic's impact on the South Korea economy that the government said was on the cusp of revival starting in the last quarter of 2019.
He emphasized the importance of timely and preemptive steps to put the momentum of recovery back on track.
He said the Cabinet approval for the use of the government's emergency funds in response to the COVID-19 pandemic should be just the "beginning," adding the early spending of state budgets is a basic step the government should do.
"This is not enough," he added. "In order to respond to the emergency economic situations, I want you to exert policy-related imagination that goes beyond expectations with no restrictions."
Advertising controversy grips S. Korean mukbang YouTubers
Seoul's last-ditch home supply plan still in doubt over its viability
Korean foodmakers ramp up overseas push amid COVID-19 pandemic
Bumpy road lies ahead for Samsung, even after heir avoids detention
One month into eased social distancing, S. Korea wrestles with cluster infections, cases with unknown routes