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Plethora of Policies Following Lines with President-elect’s Election Pledges

Plethora of Policies Following Lines with President-elect’s Election Pledges

Posted January. 22, 2003 22:52,   


As President-elect Roh Moo-hyun recently called on government ministries for carrying out his election pledges with future-oriented attitudes, instead of complaining about insufficient budget, a growing number of cases are found that some ministries of the government came up with polices that simply follow the line with president-elect’s election pledges. Against this backdrop, there are concerns that the president-elect’s election pledges are unlikely to be implemented because of insufficient budget.

It has been known that noticing such cases have been frequently found, President-elect Roh strongly criticized government ministries for accepting his election pledges without critical opinions. “Instead of simply accepting election pledges, government ministries should examine feasibility and drawbacks of election pledges, prerequisite for implementation and alternatives to those election pledges, along with polices,” he was quoted as saying to government officials at the parliamentary briefing session with the government transition team on Jan.22.

The Ministry of Health and Welfare reported the government takeover team Jan.22 that it is planning to increase recipients of guarantee for basic living, government financial assistance to people with minimal incomes by extending the scope of coverage. As a result, additional 320,000 people will benefit from the increased coverage. Under the new scheme, a household of 4 family members with monthly incomes of 1-1.2 million won will be received government assistance for education and medical bills. Also the ministry presented plans to increase beneficiaries for elderly pensions and the amount that they can receive.

In addition, the ministry reported that it will introduce a new pension system for people with severe disability (disability level 1-2) and is planning to provide 830,000 elderly people suffering from physical paralysis with various services such as nursing and bath.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Finance and Economy reported that it will lower the real property acquisition and registration taxes and raise the possession tax by adjusting the real estate tax base to a realistic level, considering Roh’s election pledges. However, the ministry had previously expressed its opposition to the idea, citing reducing the real property acquisition and registration taxes goes against the taxation principle as reasons

The Ministry of Construction and Transportation reported it will provide 330,000 people living in houses which are below the minimal dwelling standard with rental houses built by the government and financial assistance for house repairing. In addition, it will invest 1.6 trillion won for improvement of 496 substandard residential areas by next year.

In particular, the Ministry of Gender Equality suggested introducing a quota system for women in the government offices and also contended women should be elected as deputies of local governments. However, the recommendation of such a quota system is not the ministry’s expected job. The president-elect had promised a quota system for women lawmakers in local and central elections during the Dec.19 presidential election campaign.

On top of those cases, other cases that simply follow the president-elect’s election promises were found at the briefing to the presidential transition team. In the briefing session dealing with three topics of “participatory welfare and improvement of quality of life,” polices that included the increase in child welfare for children with the age of 5, provision of 160,000 won a month for the disable, and temporary retirement for working mothers, were found.

Young-Hae Choi yhchoi65@donga.com