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More Benefits to Go to Poor Households Next Year

Posted September. 29, 2009 08:27,   


Support for low income households with both parents working will be expanded next year.

For example, such parents can leave their children at school until 9 p.m. and receive up to 170,000 won (142 U.S. dollars) in extra childcare support every month. Furthermore, low income households can receive an additional 690,000 won (577 dollars) a month to hire babysitters.

This is according to a Dong-A Ilbo analysis after it categorized the beneficiaries of the 2009 budget bill.

○ Students and parents

Parents of a low income household who both work can leave their children at school until 9 p.m. The children will get not only dinner but also extra classes.

Forty billion won (33 million dollars) in budget will go to 2,000 elementary schools nationwide next year to set up an “all-day daycare school.” Forty thousand students, or 20 per school, are expected to benefit from this program.

○ Women and children

More support will go to childbirth and childcare to raise the country’s low fertility rate. A household with a monthly income below 4.98 million won (4,200 dollars), up from 4.36 million won (3,600 dollars), and in which both parents work can receive up to 170,000 won (142 dollars) in childcare support every month from next year.

Only 75 percent of income earned by a person earning less than his or her spouse will be counted.

The government estimates that the new calculation will enable 18,000 additional households to benefit from the program. In addition, a family with a monthly income below 4.36 million won (3,600 dollars), or belonging to the lower 70 percent income group, can get all childcare expenses for a second child subsidized.

○ Smaller companies

A budget of 9.1 billion won (7.6 million dollars) has been allocated next year for launching a small and medium-sized supermarket chain, and 36.5 billion won (30 million dollars) will go to support traditional markets through marketing and publicity assistance.

Support for start-ups will also be expanded. A start-up support fund for small, mid-size and venture companies will grow from 266.3 billion won (222 million dollars) to 348.2 billion won (291 million dollars). Financial assistance for single person start-ups will expand from 3.7 billion won (three million dollars) to 9.9 billion won (8.2 million dollars).

○ The elderly and disabled

Elderly people aged 60 or above who earn 120 percent less than the minimum living wage can receive 30,000 won (25 dollars) per month in medicine subsidies if they get dementia. Those aged 65 or above with dementia or other senile diseases can live at nursing homes depending on their conditions as decided by the National Health Insurance Corp.

Children aged six or under raised by visually impaired parents can receive individual language tutoring tailored to specific needs. Monthly lesson vouchers worth 160,000 to 220,000 won (134 to 184 dollars) will be provided for each child for language and play lessons.

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