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State Council Meeting on Fund Allotment Ends Without Many Gains

State Council Meeting on Fund Allotment Ends Without Many Gains

Posted May. 02, 2005 23:41,   


The state council meeting on fund allotment, the first of its kind in the Korean history, has ended without many gains. Only fundamental agreements were made in the meeting.

Attended by President Roh Moo-huyn and ministers, the council meeting discussed how to allocate national finances for the next five years, and was held for two days starting April 30 at the Central Officials Training Institute in Gwacheon.

“We agreed on focusing national finance allocations on welfare, along with restructuring relevant fields in order to prevent unhealthy financial activities which might be caused by increased expenditures on welfare,” said Planning and Budget Minister Byeon Yang-kyoon. He added that the specifics would be decided later through separate meetings.

The top agenda of the council was to finance the lower income class, which needs government support the most, and to use the market system to provide additional government services for higher-income classes, according to the Ministry of Planning and Budget.

Some ministries, including the Ministry of Planning and Budget, suggested that the private market should be used to allow a more flexible prices and a lower entry barrier to provide a variety of services for higher-income classes.

However, those who opposed the suggestion were reported to have expressed concerns that if the welfare service is privatized, the public service price would rise accordingly, leading to a heavier financial burden.

Chang-Won Kim changkim@donga.com