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Inconvenient Laws to Be Abolished

Posted March. 28, 2008 07:33,   


The process of getting a driver’s license will be significantly simplified and the de-facto obsolete regulation forbidding car window tinting is expected to be scrapped soon.

“Laws and regulations that cause inconvenience to the people and get in the way of economic activities should be rescinded,” said President Lee Myung-bak while attending a briefing session by the Ministry of Government Legislation at the Central Government Complex in Seoul on Thursday morning.

He ordered government officials to come up with measures (to abolish those laws and regulations) in consultation with economy-related organizations including the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Korea Federation of Small and Medium Business.

On the driving license examination, President Lee said, “It costs over 1 million won per person to prepare for the test, including attending a private institute. This causes unnecessary losses in terms of time and money.” He urged officials to devise measures to reduce the burden of test takers and adopt a simplified process like that of the United States.

He has also hinted at the abolition of customary trainings of taxi and bus drivers aimed at providing quality service and sanitary education for restaurant owners, saying, “Unsanitary restaurants are not competitive. Taxi and bus drivers will be kind if working conditions improve. So relying on market principles is more desirable.”

President Lee asked to replace inexplicable legal codes with plain ones as well. “Though it will take a considerably long time to replace difficult and Japanese-driven terms, we should start doing it right away,” said Lee. He also said, “I have been to the court. At the time, (the judge) used words that I couldn’t understand, I had no idea whether I was guilty or not guilty.”

“In the case of financial laws, provisions created in the 1950s are still in effect, restricting business activities,” he said, asking the Ministry of Government Legislation to review the current laws across the board.

In addition, he pointed out that the government often gives a hard time (with a variety of regulations) to IT experts setting up their businesses with their own technology. He urged officials to consider abrogating unnecessary laws and regulations in order (for the experts) to start up an enterprise with no more than an establishment report.

In accordance with President Lee’s instructions, the Ministry of Government Legislation will soon set up a task force in charge of reviewing laws and a center aimed at abolishing laws and regulations that cause inconvenience to the public. In addition, it plans to shift the current legal system of “prohibiting in principle and allowing in exceptional cases (a positive system)" to the one which “allows in principle and prohibits in exceptional cases (a negative system)."

Government Legislation Minister Lee Seog-yeon said at a briefing, “We plan to rescind laws and regulations that cause troubles to people as soon as possible. Those laws include the one that regulates car window tinting and a traffic regulation imposing fines on those driving without a driver’s license.”

Minister Lee also said, “Oftentimes inside regulations of individual ministries, such as instructions and notices, hinder businesses and inconvenience the people. To prevent this, the Ministry of Government Legislation will review them before they are issued by each ministry.” He also emphasized, “The Advanced Media Support System, which was carried out by the now-defunct Government Information Agency, violated people’s right to know. This should not be repeated by inside regulations of individual ministries.”

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