W50 Trillion to Be Set Aside for Reunification

      July 18, 2011 09:34

      The government is preparing to raise W50 trillion over the next 10 to 15 years for reunification with North Korea (US$1=W1,060). This amount is one-sixth of South Korea's annual budget of W300 trillion.

      A member of a Unification Ministry task force said, "We're looking at a scenario where Korea may be reunited in 10 to 15 years, and we've estimated some W50 trillion would be needed to cover the costs." The government will have to raise between W3 trillion and W5 trillion every year to achieve that aim.

      It plans to change the way the Inter-Korean Cooperation Fund is used, whose ceiling is W1 trillion per year. Until recently, the government has only added W100 billion to the fund for the following year if there was W900 billion left in the balance, but under the new policy, it will add W1 trillion per year regardless of what is left in the balance. It is also mulling a special reunification tax.

      A senior government official told reporters at the inter-Korean immigration office in Paju, Gyeonggi Province last Friday, "We're thinking hard about how to make the most of the cooperation fund and could end up making up part of the fund from tax money." But he added the government will try to keep the burden for taxpayers as light as possible.

      A senior government official told reporters at the inter-Korean immigration office in Paju, Gyeonggi Province last Friday, "We're thinking hard about how to make the most of the cooperation fund and could end up making up part of the fund from tax money." But he added the government will try to keep the burden for taxpayers as light as possible.

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