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Gov¡¯t performance mixed in 2000

Posted January. 15, 2001 11:43,   


The government is headed in the right direction, but its inadequate readiness produced limited results, according its self evaluation.

The government undertook restructuring last year, but its results fell short of satisfying the public with tangible fruits of reform or increasing the nation's competitiveness due to a lack of consistency and to resistance from special-interest groups, an official self-evaluation by the government said. Cited on the upside, however, were: the landmark summit meeting between South Korea and the North, maintenance of the basic economic growth potential and laying the groundwork for a welfare state.

A report containing these and other evaluations was adopted at a meeting of officials and a private advisory body of specialists commissioned to evaluate government policies. It was chaired by Lee Se-Jung at the presidential mansion Saturday and presided over by President Kim Dae-Jung.

The annual assessment of government performance is conducted under the auspices of the Office of the State Affairs Coordination at the Prime Minister's Office. The conclusions of the self-assessment are to be delivered to all government agencies concerned for supplementary enforcement of policy programs and remedial measures. Some of the outstanding contents follow.


In selecting and disposing of troubled businesses, strategies were not prepared in a proper time frame, and policy response was inadequate. Lack of diverse policy alternatives to cope with uncertainties undermined the nation's capacity to deal with changing external conditions, including the sharp rise in oil prices and the plunge in semiconductor chip prices. The dwindling value of the assets possessed by the middle class has been one of the causes of general disaffection toward economic policies.

Unification and diplomacy:

The base of popular consensus needed to be broadened for the effective implementation of North Korea policy. Clear-cut division of responsibilities between government departments is yet to be achieved for systematic continuation of inter-Korean exchanges and cooperation. Interdepartmental accord on trade issues was unsatisfactory.

General administration:

Sufficient preventive efforts were not made at curbing an illegal and violent explosion of activism by special-interest groups in the course of restructuring public corporations and the separation of medical practice from dispensing of prescription drugs. Delay in anti-corruption and human rights legislation stood in the way of carrying through reforms.

The report also showed more citizens expressed satisfaction at the clerical and administrative service offered to citizens at government agencies. A poll conducted on more than 4,000 visiting 39 central government offices gave a high score of 62.3 point out of 100. The numbers compared favorably with those for l998 (54.9) and for 1999 (61.0).