SEOUL, Sept. 11 (Korea Bizwire) – Korea has been evaluated as making the lowest efforts to solve the problem of income inequality.
It was also pointed out that structural corruption was severe, as those who had the upper hand were getting all the benefits that resulted from the protection of regulatory systems.
The World Economic Forum (WEF) revealed a report on the economic situation in 112 countries, issued from an ‘inclusive’ point of view. ‘Inclusive’ growth means that society shares the fruits of growth, narrowing the gap between the rich and the poor, elevating the real living standards of the people, and using that energy to power more growth.
In the report, the WEF selects ‘growth and competitiveness’, ‘equity of income’, and ‘equity between generations’ to be the key indicators of a nation’s economy. The countries were graded in five classes from high to low.
Furthermore, the 112 countries were divided into four groups based on their income levels. Korea was in the ‘industrially advanced’ group, with a per capita income over $17,000.
Korea scored at the highest level in terms of ‘growth of per capita income during the past decade’ and ‘expansion of labor productivity during the past decade’, which are lower indexes of ‘growth and competitiveness’.
However, Korea was graded in the 4th class for ‘international competitiveness’, where policies and systems were included, while the poverty rate that measures ‘equity of income’ was graded 5th class, and the ‘rate of labor income’ was graded 4th class.
The WEF pointed out the problems of Korean society reflected in the results. “Corruption is the biggest concern in the Korean economy. The stronger in many fields are taking away the rents. These rents are concentrated on a small number of major companies managed by families. They are protected by all sorts of regulations.”
In the mean time, the level of financial assets possessed by ordinary people was very low, and social protection including health and medical treatment was very restricted.
Also, Korea ranked lowest among 30 countries in an index that shows the size of effects redistributive policies have on narrowing the income gap.
By Lina Jang (firstname.lastname@example.org)