By Xu Aiying and Lee Jihae
President Moon Jae-in on May 21 pledged to swiftly press ahead with his proposed "Korean New Deal" to minimize the economic impact of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and secure future competitiveness.
He said this in a meeting he chaired of business leaders from key industries at the Korea International Trade Association in Seoul.
Speaking to CEOs from nine key sectors such as aviation, cars and shipbuilding, the president warned that domestic industry and jobs were all in crisis and urged cooperation between labor and management to save jobs and the economy.
"Through five rounds of Emergency Economic Council meetings, the government made the extraordinary decision to inject KRW 245 trillion – 13% of our country’s GDP – into overcoming this economic crisis, and it is also preparing a third supplementary budget," he said.
"Among other things, the government will quickly implement the Korean version of the New Deal. We'll put all our efforts into recovering the economy, securing future competitiveness, protecting jobs and expanding the employment safety net."
President Moon also forecast the acceleration of digitization and eco-friendliness after the pandemic ends. He also pledged to forge ahead with the Green New Deal, part of the Korean New Deal, to respond to climate change by reducing greenhouse gases and create jobs.
"For its part, the government will strive to nurture future technology professionals while supporting Korean companies' efforts to innovate," he said, asking corporations to make efforts to respond to the post-COVID-19 era.