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S. Korea to allow people to send more masks to family members living abroad

Economy 15:33 July 10, 2020

SEOUL, July 10 (Yonhap) -- South Korea will allow citizens to send more face masks to their family members living abroad, officials said Friday, in line with the government's plan to end its mask rationing scheme.

The government introduced the mask rationing system in early March due to surging demand as the spread of the new coronavirus worsened, but the scheme will end Sunday, with the supply of masks stabilizing.

For the past three months, a person has been allowed to send a maximum of 36 face masks to family members living abroad.

Starting Monday, a person will be able to send 90 face masks per quarter, according to customs officials.

This undated file photo shows a citizen holding protective masks purchased under the mask rationing scheme. (Yonhap)

Between March 24 and Wednesday, South Koreans sent about 6.07 million face masks to their family members living abroad, data showed.

Of them, 4.06 million masks were sent to the United States and 560,316 masks to Canada.

Currently, mask producers are allowed to export up to 30 percent of their total output. The government will operate the monthly exports quota system, under which the total amount of permissible monthly exports should not surpass 50 percent of total production.

But the government will continue to ban overseas shipments of surgical masks and thinner anti-saliva masks to meet local demand for such products in the summer.
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