An agreement was finally made on the budget plan for next year after oppositions between the ruling and opposition parties surrounding the increase of the number public employees.
The ruling and opposition parties will hold a general meeting today (Dec. 5) and vote on next year’s budget plan.
Reporter Lee Jun-sahm has more.
The ruling and opposition parties continued to be at an impasse regarding next year’s budget plan and finally announced their agreement two days after the legislation deadline.
The parties confirmed the size of additional public employees at about 9,400, which was their greatest point of debate.
<Woo Won-shik / Floor Leader for the Minjoo Party of Korea> “The number of additional public employees hired in 2018 shall be set at 9,475.”
This is a number that decreased by about 2,700 compared with the original plan from the government, which stated about 12,000 additional officials.
The increase in the minimum wage, which was the greatest point of debate, along with the increase of public employees, will be funded directly with 2.9 trillion won for next year, but the government has decided to support the plan indirectly starting in 2019.
<Jung Woo-taek / Floor Leader for the Liberty Korea Party> “(After 2019), we will report the plans and progress on providing indirect support by July of 2018 to the National Assembly.”
The plan for increasing the income tax for very high earners was maintained and the standard for the maximum corporate tax (25 percent) was changed from 200 billion won to 300 billion won or above.
The child allowance, which was supposed to be given for every child, was revised to be a selective welfare program.
<Kim Dong-chul / Floor Leader for the People’s Party> “The child allowance shall be paid out at 100,000 won per month starting in September of 2018 for children between the ages of zero to 5 for households of two people with income levels below the top 90 percent.”
The Liberty Korea Party left some doors open for some issues.
Floor Leader Jung Woo-taek stated that he deferred on the additional hiring of public employees stated in the agreement, as well as two clauses regarding corporate taxes.
The ruling and opposition parties will hold a general meeting at 11 a.m. on Tuesday and vote on the budget plan reflecting the details of the agreement.
Lee Jun-sahm reporting for Yonhap News TV.
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