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South Korea’s bloated public services need to be slimmed down-Chosun Ilbo: Daily News from South Korea

The government promised to freeze the employment of South Korea’s bloated civil servants for the next five years on Wednesday. 1% of civil servants in each ministry are seconded each year to jobs that require inter-departmental cooperation, such as helping the semiconductor industry and responding to coronaviruses.

From 990,000 during the Lee Myung-bak administration to 1.03 million under President Park Geun-hye and 160,000 during the Moon Jae-in administration, the number of civil servants in the central and local governments is 2009. It has increased dramatically since the year. In the previous administration alone, the number of civil servants has increased by 130,000 over the past five years, more than double that of the Lee and Park administrations. In rural areas, the number of residents is decreasing, but the number of civil servants is increasing rapidly.

Over the last five years, public servants’ salary spending has skyrocketed by 30%, but pension obligations have increased by about 300 trillion won (US $ 1 = 1,307 won). The debt burden per person is 20 million won. How did the Moon government intend to cover its debt as the birth rate continues to decline and the population continues to grow?

The bloated public sector also reduces economic efficiency, as an increase in the number of civil servants naturally leads to an increase in bureaucratic formalism to continue to occupy them. The new government has the right to try to reduce the number of surplus civil servants and increase efficiency.

State-owned enterprises also need to be rationalized. The number of state-owned enterprises has increased by 18 to 350 over the past five years, and the state government has established 118 new public enterprises. According to statistics, the number of employees of state-owned enterprises increased by a whopping 35 percent, or 115,000, during the lunar administration. In addition, publicly funded sinecure of the elderly has increased significantly due to sneaky work such as picking up leaves and cleaning bird droppings. Civil servants are not in a tight spot by nature, so it is difficult to reduce the public sector immediately. But the country urgently needs to reduce it. Current plans will undoubtedly be hit by protests from spoiled civil servants, but they are needed during times of high inflation and a slowdown.

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https://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2022/07/14/2022071401355.html South Korea’s bloated public services need to be slimmed down-Chosun Ilbo: Daily News from South Korea

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