SEOUL, Jan. 11 (Yonhap) -- President Moon Jae-in said Monday that the government will provide all South Korean people with free-of-charge COVID-19 vaccines in phases starting next month.
"(The government) will make sure that all of the people will be inoculated free of charge in accordance with priorities," he said in his New Year's address, assuring that inoculation will begin in February.
Moon also apologized to those with difficulties due to soaring home prices and pledged "quick and various" measures for the supply of new houses.
On diplomacy, he said the government will strengthen the Seoul-Washington alliance on the occasion of the upcoming launch of the Joe Biden administration.
He vowed efforts to pull off a "great transition" in the stalled North Korea-U.S. and inter-Korean dialogue.
"The key driving force of the peace process on the Korean Peninsula is dialogue and win-win cooperation," he stressed. "Our will to meet (with North Korea) anytime, anywhere, even in a non-face-to-face formula remains unchanged."
Moon announced that South Korea will also "actively consider" joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), while speeding up a push to forge free trade agreements with the Philippines, Cambodia and Uzbekistan.
For South Korea, he added, 2021 will be a year of "recovery" from the coronavirus crisis, "inclusiveness" to reduce social disparities and a "leap" toward becoming a leading nation.
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