CFO Reaffirms Opposition to Universal COVID-19 Relief Cash Payments


South Korea’s top economic policy official on Tuesday reiterated his opposition to providing universal COVID-19 relief to anyone with another supplementary budget currently under consideration in parliament.

On Monday, the leaders of the ruling parties and the main opposition parties shared the point of view on the need to distribute money to all people with the second supplementary budget of this year.

At the end of June, the government proposed a supplementary budget of 33 trillion won ($ 28.9 billion) to fund the fifth round of COVID-19 assistance programs for people in the lower income bracket of 80. % and small traders hit hard by the pandemic.

“I do not agree (with the idea of ​​political leaders),” Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki said at a parliamentary meeting.

Hong has long opposed providing universal support to all, citing the country’s growing national debt.

He also remains cautious about increasing the size of the proposed supplementary budget, presenting negative views on the possibility of a debt sale to fund a larger supplementary budget.

The ruling Democratic Party (DP) wants to offer another round of universal stimulus checks for all households. In May 2020, the government distributed 14.3 trillion won in emergency cash to all households.

The fourth wave of the pandemic is expected to cause huge losses for small traders as the country on Monday began implementing Level 4 social distancing rules, the highest level of its four-level program, in the greater capital region for two weeks. (Yonhap)

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